After Ascension and Descent
I take the phrase "After Ascension and Descent" from a text by Pierre Joris regarding rhizomatic thinking in Deleuze and Guattari, the epiterranean run of ideas rooting everywhere without a significant central root. It is the philosophy of the Internet Age for sure, but the idea also indicates a basis for a hermeneutics that ranges beyond hierarchical categories, a recognizing the need for thinking to run rampant. Outliers in this case rest on even ground with the critical mass; without beginning or end, up or down, oppositional forces matter less than the ease with which ideas corroborate and complete each other. Tradition becomes problematic. It is naturally a postmodern idea and seems to fit the sense of play and transparency that has worked its way into my processes and that defines my style to some extent.
With that said, most of these pictures surprised me. I made some traditionally with a camera and film, some with a scanner, and one I photographed with a scanner set on its side. I knew I was knee deep in 18th century ideas of the sublime (especially in Burke and Kant) but also in the midst of a 21st century concept of the sublime if such is even possible (for instance in the immediate availability of digital media, which is detectable only on examination of my working process). I wanted to offset the commonplace, which is always at the heart of the still life genre, without upsetting its balance, so I used thread as a connecting metaphor but in a way so that it really fails to connect anything at all. The tension between surface correctness and the sewing that calls attention to itself reformulates the pictures for me, in the process redefining "still life" and, at least for my purposes, redeeming it.
The resulting images survey the gap between growth and restraint, hesitation and power. Somewhere in that gap is a wordless awareness worth sharing.