The Space We Need


Art school was where I learned that success was a trap. How limited my teachers were. Experts. Hemmed in by reduction. It would take thirty-five years for this to sink in. Not surprising if you consider the trajectory of the intervening decades, beginning with the height of their positions at the time. The accumulated authority… Continue reading The Space We Need

Security & Well-being


It's a common expression. We consider the two must go together, "How can we feel good if we're not secure?" Here's John's recent comment on An Exploration, Navigating Without a Map: Tony, I have read and re-read your original posting, and I think I have a better grip on where you are going with it.… Continue reading Security & Well-being

This is key


I just stumbled upon Donald D. Hoffman's work in The Atlantic Magazine. It was one of those exceedingly rare moments when a crucial new piece is added to the puzzle. He's a cognitive scientist. He's been studying the roots of perception and his research has led to his articulation of a key missing link if… Continue reading This is key

A Monopoly on Violence


This is the term of art used to describe and justify government's control of military and police functions. There is an obviousness, an inevitability to the rationale behind it that leads from, "There are bad-guys." to "We need to defend ourselves against evil-doers." to "Stop! Or I'll shoot!" And, then we accept the entire package,… Continue reading A Monopoly on Violence

Coherence is not reasonable.


This statement demands clarification. Coherence it is not a synonym for reason, reasoned, reasonable. Neither is incoherence: unreason, unreasonable, unreasoned. The key to understanding coherence lies at the root of these distinctions. I've found this talk given by Anthony McCann valuable in illuminating this distinction. Anthony uses language centered around what he calls Gentleness. His… Continue reading Coherence is not reasonable.

Religion, Mental Proprioception, and the Implicate Order.


JMG has repeatedly pointed out that a religious impulse is always at work. There are many avenues for this impulse to work through. There are many places it can hide in plain sight, as it does in civic religions. As it does in our belief in science/technology, distinct from the practice of science. There are… Continue reading Religion, Mental Proprioception, and the Implicate Order.

Between Wanting and Finding


There is a point at the start of a painting when there is a precariousness between what the painting "is to be about" and the first touches of what is actually there. Something I'm only arriving at now is that the former, while of great interest and concern at the start, is of no account.… Continue reading Between Wanting and Finding

“A Man in a Boat”


The image of a man in a boat in Buddhist iconography represents the combination of name and form. As Alan Watts described it, words bring out shapes. It seems to me this is a description of meaning. It relates, I cannot help but think, to neo-Platonism and the establishment of Christian Dogma. During the first… Continue reading “A Man in a Boat”

Making Space Take Time


This recent post by Morten Svenstrup at time culture describes and then discusses the implications of the blockage of a residential street to motor traffic in Denmark. It's wonderful the way the simple addition of a few posts set in the ground transforms a neighborhood. Morten discusses the various velocities of life and the way… Continue reading Making Space Take Time

The Freedom to Dream Differently


But if it’s all imagination, why not dream terrible dreams with one’s creative power? Many have, of course, and this has had disastrous consequences to life, joy, creativity, and much more. Death, destruction, pain, horror. But these are all forms of idolatry and infidelity, the belief in a limited God, be this the nation, or… Continue reading The Freedom to Dream Differently

Dwelling and Conviviality in Art, a cross-post from Light on Canvas


Ivan Illich's work turns on two related concepts. One is of our need to dwell, to inhabit a home, to have a place. The other is our need for conviviality. We cannot exist in isolation. We are vulnerable and part of everything as everything is part of us. * Continue reading on Light on Canvas.

Making Sense


We all know what that means! What does it mean? To make is to put together. It's not quite the same as create. Not as pedestrian as assemble. It does imply a matter-of-fact doing. The emphasis is on competence and taking things as they are and putting them together so the result will function as… Continue reading Making Sense