I have said to the worm; thou art my mother & my sister.
william blake from ‘the gates of paradise’ & taken from the ‘book of job’ see: here to see the many versions of “i say to my father thou art the grave & and to my mother thou art the maggots…”, all the different translations and shifts in philosophy. fascinating.
the original i think – as blake has it – is very beautiful.
sadly the picture is something of a failure i was working on this for a month or so & i can not find what i want.
- How doth the little busy bee
- Improve each shining hour
- And gather honey all the day
- From every opening flower!
- How skillfully she builds her cell!
- How neat she spreads the wax!
- And labours hard to store it well
- With the sweet food she makes.
- In works of labour or of skill,
- I would be busy too;
- For Satan finds some mischief still
- For idle hands to do.
- In books, or work, or healthful play,
- Let my first years be passed,
- That I may give for every day
- Some good account at last.
Isaac Watts’ ‘Against idleness and mischief’ 
or as alice would have it:
- How doth the little crocodile
- Improve his shining tail,
- And pour the waters of the Nile
- On every golden scale!
- How cheerfully he seems to grin,
- How neatly spreads his claws,
- And welcomes little fishes in
- With gently smiling jaws!
Lewis Carroll ‘Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland’ 
Whereof one cannot speak, one must pass over in silence.
Ludvig Wittgenstein, Tractatus Logico-Philosophicus, 1922.
i have been wanting to use this quote for some time… but i am wary.
i know wittgenstein reworked much of the ‘tractatus’ later in life but have yet to get my head around the technicalities. i think this quote works too well on its own – there being many people who could redefine it / take it from its context.
my own understanding works thusly: that there are realms for which language cannot adequately deal with. that words; specificaly words, have their strengths – at which points they have meaning; and their weaknesses – at which points they become nonsense.
i think that noam chomsky uses wittgensteins methods.
this particular quote is quite poetic & so is the book – in its way.
if you wish to correct me please feel free – i will change this accordingly (if you present a good arguement).
this is a mermaid.
a distilation of fear and beauty and lust. (all that can be done is all that can be done.)
>ahem< english visual culture resembles a half arsed skrap book with green ink annotation compiled by the aesthetically challenged. the sort you might find at a house clearance. but preserved in plastic due to health & safety regulations – thusly blanding anything inspirational.
maybe england has less tradition in visual arts.
hauser and wirth have a very interesting exhibition at the moment.
matthew day jackson brings various modes of representation to bring in ghosts to cultural artefacts – or more precisely observing that cultural artefacts are ghosts…
that more or less all of the detritus of human experience can be classified as ‘ghosts’ – the exhibition conjures up a realm i think analogous to j. g. ballard’s; as the artist scrutinises his-self his death and the traces we leave, like say, self portraits (the above picture is not a picture of me).
i think there have been observations along the lines that every piece an artist produces is a self portrait. reductive but perhaps containing some truth.
a lot of this detritus is entropy – the product of action. people look for ways to waste time, worship gods, accumulate more detritus, impress…
if you wish to see more work (i am updating it as quickly as i can) click here.