Spent the first part of the day at the Museum of Contemporary Art. There were two buildings, across the street from each other. I think both buildings held about twenty pieces in total.
At ten bucks to get in, that’s like, fifty cents a piece.
I liked the store, though. I spent an hour just leafing through the monographs. I’d been reading about Wall’s photographs in the New York Times, so I looked at his books. I don’t know. I love photography, I love large scale stuff, I love narrative and figurative work, but I just can’t get into his stuff. It’s very staged, part of the whole point, but for me the ironic distance and intellectuality are insurmountable, and they keep me from penetrating the brilliant, carefully constructed surface.
It’s anti-art, as far as I’m concerned.
The remedy was Erneto Neto’s installation piece. Now, this is the opposite of what usually gets me off artistically. I find installation pieces too intentionally hip and post-nowtro and generally seriously lacking in what moves me.
But this thing.
Imagine a huge, white stocking stretched out over the ceiling, twenty feet above you. Descending through and from it are these tubules of more white lycra, the bottoms of which are tied off and swollen with pounds of spices- turmeric, sage, lavender, dozens of them. The color leaks through the stocking and adheres to the outside like some organic crust, and the scent of them fills the room and as you walk around underneath the whole thing, it is like being suspended inside the best-smelling and oddest body part you’ve ever encountered. And everyone walking around is smiling and laughing and sniffing at the protruberences and holding their hands over their mouths and the space is filled with light and the way your body reacts to it all is the most delicious thing about it.
At the store I bought a magnet with a photograph of a dead, stuffed deer that someone had placed against a photo backdrop of a mountain road.
Walking back to the ferry afterwards, I crossed the street and on the corner, in the gutter, were the lifeless bodies of two headless chickens. Feathers all blackbrown and bluegreen, their hard yellow talons curled up next to their bellies.
Last night I had a terrible dream about a spider. At first it was sneaking up on my wife. I tried to warn her, but she didn’t get what I was talking about. Then the spider got into bed with me. I could feel it moving around in the covers by my feet. I got up and threw off the covers, but it had moved around and gotten onto my back.
It attached itself to my spine, its legs sinking into my flesh and anchoring in the vertebrae. Then it bit into my spine and sent a long tendril up the spinal cord and into my brain. I could feel all the tingly weirdness and hot, electrical pain of it and as this was happening, my cell phone rang. I picked it up and a weird buzzing went off into my ear. This was the second part of the spider’s attack- a remote brain-draining program initiated wirelessly through the cell phone- downloading the contents of my life from my brain, and also stealing my soul.
The only thing I could think of was to try to warn my wife before I was a soulless husk, filled with alien poison and drained of my lifeforce, but I was unable to move or control my body in any way.
I just shouted in my head, “Help Me! Help Me! Help Me!” over and over. I was actually trying to wake myself up, and I sensed as it was happening that I would wake Yolie up with my shouting, even if I couldn’t wake myself up. I wanted her to get up and help me get out of my nightmare, and I was also wanting her to soothe me and hold me in the aftermath.
Eventually, my shouting actually DID wake me up, and I reached out for my wife-
but I was alone.
Man, let me tell you, that sucked.
She’s so good to me.
I call her every day. Once or twice. And this is when we’re together, at home. Here, too. I’m grateful for the technology. It helps, her voice in my ear, moving through all that space and snuggling right into my actual body. Odd, when you think about it. Magical.
I love that woman real, real bad.
I hope you are having a wonderful weekend. And I hope you get to see some art. Or even better, make some.