Honestly, the thing about these collaborations is that there is an artistic intention, and that then there is the reality of what unfolds. Perhaps the "shift" is as much in my expectations as it is in the weaving of your narratives in relation to each other, across a surface 25 feet wide, 7 feet high, and under a variety of environmental conditions.
Nonetheless, there was were phases of this event - and I want to thank you all very much for being a part of it.
There are some amazing and intimate moments of drawing that hold their own territory within the larger context of SHIFT.
There are places where fringes meet, where artists step to an edge.
And there are centers where the overlap begins to read like a map that has defied, and absorbed its own key. This is incredibly compelling.
I fight with myself about how to look at this work: When I see you at first so attentive to the concept; thoughtful and chasing an articulation of your narrative - that is when I start to see something outside of what I imagined, and I begin to care about the work for reasons outside my desire to see it realized. This moment is my first Shift, and it is accompanied by my projection: NOT that projection - but my projection of what the drawing will become now that I have seen you. I see what you are doing, and I see it working, and now I want the entire surface of the drawing to capture your gesture, and your gesture, and yours. I see yards and fences and open gates. I see doors held wide, and a walking through, but delicately. And with an acknowledgment of having stepped in your petunias. The muddy track is one that we agree to live with because it connects inside to outside, and because we need something to get us to our knees to scrub and care for the thresholds that mark areas we will not concede as public.
And so here I watch you make a thing, a drawing, and then I project yours moving across the surface while someone else is moving toward and through you, leaving its beautiful mud, and the smear where its tread is slick.
So the second shift; I begin to get nervous. I've already conceded the control I yearn to have in the making. I've given over to you my projection. We have a relationship that is based on desire and trust and the reciprocity of that trust which wraps our differences in warmth. We are together and at first inseparable. Leaning up against the frame, we hold each other so tightly and for so long.
In one moment however I begin to feel - was it me - perhaps you - one of us begins to feel the hinge: The breathing rhythm, synchronized at times, and that hinge which has begun to work against my skin, just a little at first, now aches. It is important that we can make one drawing, but be simultaneously independent. The work calls. The world calls, and to that we must answer from this insularity.
A car crash, a man in Texas at a bar, a drawing of a penis. Someone has lost a finger, and I can feel the stare.
The gates crash, and it is FABULOUS before you begin to drift away. Surrounded, people are picking up to scratch "I love you," which of course means less after a while, so I'll stop talking and watch the tattoo bleed someone's signature from our wall. Only it's not even a signature, it's a tag. Or graffiti, or some fucking thing.
Now I am at a total loss. After you left i carried the torch for a while: the vision of this pervasive integration. Someone - I don't know who - has worked right across you. He thinks he is so connected - "it's valid because it is there" or some crap. It's interesting because it's big? But when his tree falls across someone's yard, nobody will even want to hear it.
I'll clean that shit up like a hurricane and sail to the other side of this world, where the water circles counter-clockwise home boy. It has it's own kind of beauty. See you on the flipside.
And when I walked out? There you were: earphones in. Reading a book and not looking up.