Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Boat Bird and the great sea swell of doubt.

The water continues to rise in Brisbane and, being married to a mediaman, I am flooded with the weight of it. I struggle with how removed I remain.With the paradox of natural disaster.

In my hot, dry home, I run the ebb and flow of days and nights with three sick children, nothing serious except for my nerves and lack of sleep. And the greyness of doubt. 
An afternoon working in the studio saves me from running so far inward I that can't see.
Instead I name what I can see in the swell of BIG doubt:
I am concerned with the lack of rigour in some of my posts,
the lack of distinction,
the occasional school project feel of it,
the small flock of birds flying,
the rejection in the form of quiet reply. (This is not a performance)
With the volume of silence,
the hesitation in posting hesitation,
the sharing of not knowing and uncertainty,
the confusion of double platform and duel audience,
the possibility that I am investing too much in a distraction (from my own future).
With the lack of time,
the fallout of expectation,
the conflicting reality of transparency and self censoring,
the pressure.
With the question of value, and reason,
the accumulation of relentless flying lessons,
the repeated crashing into runway,
the lack of auto pilot.

And then I fall into the relief of realising I have lost my way in the night, and that most days I have no map nor compass here.  I am forced to let go of the micro-detail of the researcher in me. The academic. I accept that there is too much information here. I accept I do not know most of it. I fly anyway.

So right now, I post what I am sure of; the collaboration between Lilly and I. The stories we are writing and imaging as we go, the creation of them as miniature limited edition books within the pages of the magazine. The collection. And this particular one, we introduce below: Boatbird,  originally an idea of a friendship between a boat and a bird dreamed by Lilly, to which I responded to by falling in love with this deeply felt bird over the original one. Between the idea and the response, a platform of collaboration and process was born. The words and imaging of Boatbird fly in response to what we hear, in response to children who are thrown against rocks, in response to things much bigger than doubt.

Boat Bird and the long sea home (Part 1)

One hundred thousand steps from home he had carried his boat. His head was flat and his heart full of too many days and too much water. He was tired. Finally, at the edge of the ocean he stood while all of the barnacles caught up in his wings slid off one by one in a little procession.

The barnacles had become dry and cracked on the long journey but as they hit the sea one by one, each of the tiny hidden bodies replenished; a fleet who had found their journeys end now quickly overtaken by a new starting line. Boatbird had arrived at the beginning again, he heaved with the weight of his brave boat and gathered his last strength. He was on the run, from faraway seas that were no longer safe. His only hope to freedom was on the other side of the enormous stretch of water before him... 

Boatbird images by Lilly, words by Jo. Ideas, content, and response for images and words and the space between them belong to both artists. All rights reserved.(For all children on a difficult journey)

1 comment:

  1. I once loved Jo-the-dancer; now I love Jo-the-writer.

    A Friend of Clare Blue


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