Monday, August 20, 2012

Sheri's Letter to William [in disguise] as Esme's Letter to Wyatt.

The demands of painting have the most astonishing consequences. In
     my life at this moment you are one of them
Perspective since De Chirico manipulated it plastically; resolved it in his painting paradigms, now exists in the mind; a nostalgia; a co-relative isolation; a plenary; a playa, where, one must, to see the water, go immediately after the rain, and to see the broad level ground, must visit before. Painting is exquisite as the punishment for the thinker: denied the thoughts of his grave-diggers, his own death-face and his final curiosity, a vision of his bones--the skeleton: of which he was always aware, moment by moment emerging to that static release he, the thinker, cannot joyfully sit, a separated thing, shaking his bones Perhaps a heart petrified, or a brain, an eye, an unborn child, would roll deliciously inside it, to rattle there, the way a dead man rattles in the sea nor find a solution to deny all this, a solving, nor a solvent, to disappear those bones, make it an improbability the other's joy, not to deny the priceless departure into death.
Since paintings are in the service of my desires, I can disdain no ruse to
     accomplish them.
To paint to intensify, to remember but what could I remember here,
     in this place, where, in truth, I have never been before? A street of acci
     dents all designed to happen to me?
Chroniclers, replacing instinct, become us more and more to lose our
     sensibilities, but, how can I refuse this slan-derous name when I shall paint,
     and then insist upon it?
It would doubtlessly, be kinder not to insist so, or investigate less directly,
     more discreetly: ask my mother, not my brain; "what sort of little girl
     I was?" and lover: "What woman I became" in order to define the strange
     significance of the avowal of these episodes of paint, like circumstance
     divorced from motivation
This, though, would place it, in sum, upon another level of being, every
     delusion of my energetic brain engages itself alone, then, in this enterprise,
     this demonstration of itself.
The mere coincident of materials at one's disposal cannot make a paint-
     ing, nor, even a journey, indeed that might as well never had been taken.
To paint without means, desire or justification--a dubious use, habit
     sloughed away from reason or, in an indecisive moment, "wasn't it good
    of it to rain?" or "who was it, came to see me at three in the afternoon?"
A law-maker, unable to formulate laws, can be a painter, or a land, where,
     laws when broken, punish, not the offender, but the law-makers, can
     produce painters. A painter in   any other place must struggle to be what
     he is.
Rooted within us, basic laws, forgotten gladly, as an undesirable appoint-
     ment made under embarrassing pressures, are a difficult work to find.
     The painter, speaking without tongue, is quite absurdly mad in his at-
     tempt to do so, yet he is inescapably bound toward this.
To recognize, not to establish but to intervene. A remarkable illusion?
Painting, a sign whose reality is actually, I, never to be abandoned, a
     painting is myself, ever attentive to me, mimicking what I never changed,
     modified, or compromised. Whether, I, myself, am object or image, they
     at once, are both, real or fancied, they are both, concrete or abstract, they
     are both, exactly and in proportion to this disproportionate I, being
     knowingly or unknowingly neither one nor the other, yet to be capable
     of creating it, welded as one, perhaps not even welded but actually from
    the beginning one, am also both and what I must, without changing,
     modifying, or compromising, be.
The painter concerned for his mortal safety, indifferent because he fears
     to scrutinize, paradoxically sacrifices that very safety, for he will not be
     allowed to escape painting.
He will make paintings or they will revolt and make him, unhappy be-
     ing in the grasp of them. He compulsively must, then, live them cold as
     they are, static, perversely with warmth and movement he cannot know
     but feel painfully, a bird with broken eggs inside.
On the other hand, a no-painter--resourceful as he may be, cannot paint.
     He cannot say, well, "I did not get the job but I shall say I got it any-
     how"--by this distortion of fact he deludes, not himself, but other per-
     sons, until, that moment arrives to receive the reimbursement. With
     nothing of value to show the fact will disappear. There is no fct but
The paints knows, sadly enough, that experience does not suffice unto
    itself, has no proportion, dimension, perspective, mournfully he eats
    his life but is not allowed to digest it, this being reserved for others, not
    knowing but who must somehow, at any sacrifice be made to know,
    then punished for the sight of this knowledge, by aiding it on its jour-
    ney from brain to brain.
It does not seem unreasonable that we invent colors, lines, shapes, capable
    of being, representative of existence, therefore it is not unreasonable
    that they, in turn, later, invent us, our ideas, directions, motivations,
    with great audacity, since we, ourselves having them upon our walls.
    What rude guests they prove to be, indeed: although paintings differ
    from life by energy a painter can never be a substitute for his paintings,
    so complete so independent as reality are they. Imagine the pleasure
    they enjoy at this.
They by conversion into an idea of the person, do, instantaneously de-
    stroy him. A tragic gesture that actually leads to tragedy but diabolically
    exists only in absence of tragedy, nevertheless procreating it, how-
    ever, they are unreasonably enough, insufficient, because they are not
    made of ideas, they are made of paint, all else is really us.
Paintings are metaphors for reality, but instead of being an aid to realiza
    tion obscure the reality which is far more profound. The only way to
    circumvent painting is by absolute death. '

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