I spent the weekend packing up index cards and patching tiny map pin holes. Salon Refu is restored to emptiness. The criss-crossing wires of The Archive no longer contain the space between floor and ceiling, transforming it into object. No redaction pattern shadows on the floor. No sentient, skin-prickle flutter of words as the door opens.
It all fits nicely into four boxes.
I listened to Krista Tippett’s interview with Ann Hamilton (On Being, November 2015) as I took The Instance Cards down, feeling very keenly the impossibility of anyone other than myself having the experience of time rushing out of the room in that hour. Hamilton said some of what I have said and felt about the banal and incremental nature of large works, about the experience of being in the room with my own work…getting to know it only having made it. I feel very fortunate to have had long hours alone in the space. It has given me a chance to understand some of what I was doing all these years. And then my understanding shifts.
Hamilton also talks about not knowing. Not saying. Waiting as long as possible to fix a thing to a name. I hope I remember this.
Here I am in the awkward place again of searching for sticks…or perhaps I am not at that point yet. At the beach in Maine, we always made little homes for inch-tall avatars. It started with an idea of the home formulated long before that moment. So it seemed the first thing to do was find enough sticks of the right size. But really the first thing happened with the idea of home, the perfect shape of shelter. Or maybe the first thing was before that first thing. Maybe the first thing was the need for shelter. A need so powerful, it dominated imagination and play.
What is my new powerful need?
What is the new shape of shelter?
Where are the sticks?