9 Sep 2008

Kim Pieters' 'Wings Caught in the Tears of The Pool', at Bowen Galleries

Dunedin painter Kim Pieters' show of new works Wings Caught in the Tears of The Pool was exhibited at Bowen Galleries, Wellington, from 8 - 27 September 2008. all of the paintings' titles were taken by Kim from poems written by me, and exhibited with an appropriately non-explicatory catalogue text I wrote for the show.

Documentation of the works is viewable on the Bowen's site here


there are times when I have lost the characters in this day's fiction as living entities, she says. They pale and fall, and a space opens in which I am absence. I situate myself in my city with the eye of a foreigner. But all looking is foreign. The process of seeing is a series of symbols copied out of books, like markings on this white ground. A parody of some tabula rasa we have never known but in the expectation of it we have created a culture. The ruins have been reconstructed. Buildings are re-facaded. But I am, increasingly, a wanderer of junkstores, disconnected, picking over the cultural debris of a place, a time unknown to experience. The day's slow unreeling as though seen through rippled water

and all languages are foreign you said to me. I, equally free, am not I like a tree trunk, but the weeping tree that inhabits your work, its limbs trailing (like words?) off the page. and how to claim as "mine". the soft branching that leans in its partiality toward silence. not a striving for monumentality, oratory, presence. a distrust of the (meat eating) sun. which would claim the final. the partiality of languaging bodies "such as flesh holds it's sense of incompletion". the untongued inbetween. that you speak. that I

light stumbles into an eye's nodes and chambers. among these inscriptions and silences what body can we? body politic, body sexual, body of sparrow, flock, ant colony. where am I bisecting the swarming softness with words. how not to incise, dissect, stick the pin in, butterfly. but the book follows us home as though we know.

but the drama that exists in the white space. show don't tell, she says. make fluid the fragmented parts. lavish me with absences. exilic anxieties. finding and searching. sleep still travels through like a current, a electrical stream when the foot is stationed at point. like the foot of a snail the eye roots itself in the shelter of image. But you are blinding mentionings inside this sentence as though language were a brick series. As though there were a state of being (in a black jacket). A state of being cocooned (in parentheses). A state of looking from (a centre?) I will hatch, she says

into pure flashes and symmetries. But not metamorphosise, butterfly. Just prevail in the continuing of version after version of human, getting weaker and stronger in patches, like sunlight between buildings, like a sunrise sight out of window and lengthening. grainy, as though on a train, as though raining. these are our hands, our media. the ragged uprise and decline of light on horizons folds my eye into days a long gradient. symbols hang without referent, their white space a mental sea. to fill in the gaps or the gaps themselves are. unknown, new zealand. a hill sequence embedded. gold stutter. language accelerant, the whole rustling and flying. into light. collapsing words as though burning out. the frame.

it is something like writing without thinking, she says. treading these pale squares. a light catalyses a way of walling the silence. margins walked, alive with revisions. this language of visible things and of things that go. what thoughts are public and what. brushed under the appearance, a wall weeps papery foldings. four makes a room. an air shelter, like a body marked by eyes, by the broken parts of days.

The city writes to my eye, and I trace its scrapes of saying. All ground is water, she says. All streets are composed of paper. I have been drowned here, and walked up onto land where I was unknown, and walked into these crowds, and disappeared.

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