Friday, December 2, 2011

strange dreams


Last night, I had some weird dreams. The kind that wake you up in sheer terror at 2:30 am and leaving you wondering how in the hell could your mind have imagined that! It has been a very long time since an icy cold sweat and heart palpations occurred in my sleep. Was it the turkey burger and roasted squash side dish? Probably not. Maybe I should attribute the nocturnal torments to what I was reading seconds before I went to bed. Most likely. Last night, I read the Dec. 5th issue of the New Yorker. The article: The Materialist: Carl Andre’s eminent obscurity by Calvin Tomkins. (Great title – “eminent obscurity”) If you have followed my blog with any regularity, you know that I was reading Naked by the Window: The Fatal Marriage of Carl Andre and Ana Mendieta by Robert Katz this summer. (click here for that post). My feelings for Carl Andre were never resolved. I love his work. Andre's floor sculptures revolutionized my approach to my own sculptures. Andre's direct usage of materials - wood, copper, and tin - fascinate me.  Additionally, I am also influenced by his third wife, Ana Mendieta's work as well. Her themes of feminism, violence, life, death, place and belonging resonate with me even though there is no physical correlation between her work and mine. What bothered me most, I think,  was the photo of Andre standing in his apartment -the same one he shared with Mendieta when she fell to her death. The photo of Andre disturbs me. He is shown wearing his famous overalls, looking so small and fiendish. The article states that he has moments of forgetfulness. Yet, his memory of Mendieta’s death is recalled with precision and clarity. The photo, though, is compelling to see, especially since my memory of Andre is from the images during the 1980’s when he was robust and bearded. Andre’s  retrospective at the Dia is planned for 2013; it is sure to be a spectacle. No doubt supporters of Mendieta will be there. Supporters for Andre will be there. I will be there and hopefully I will have resolved the shameful feelings I feel for admiring his work. 

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