Tuesday, 13 March 2012

"what is and is not news"

Our friend, the artist Rajni Shah sent me this email this morning. I asked her if I could share it here.
Just read this in Stanley Cavell's beautiful essay "The Avoidance of Love" and it made me think of [What I Heard About The World]:

"We no longer know what is and is not news, what is and is not a significant fact of our present history, what is and is not relevant to one's life. The newspaper tells me that everything is relevant, but I cannot really accept that because it would mean that I do not have one life, to which some things are relevant and some not. I cannot really deny it either because I do not know why things happen as they do and why I am not responsible for any or all of it. And so to the extent that I still have feeling to contend with, it is a generalised guilt, which only confirms my paralysis; or else I convert the disasters and sensations reported to me into topics of conversation, for mutual entertainment, which in turn irritates the guilt."
(originally written in 1967)

It's such an important topic, and my work is also a response to this feeling which is why I relate so strongly to it - the work is a way of trying to allow us to see again, or to have some agency in our seeing, our knowing, in the world.
 This really speaks to me about one of the strands that's there in the show. Thank you, Rajni.

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