Listening to my mix and walking through an art museum:
CRIPPLE & THE STARFISH, ANTONY AND THE JOHNSONS
Some days I get up and want to focus on a different sense. Whether I'm deep in my own head or skating through the world outside, I filter out, or in, what I crave that day.
OPEN TO END, LONG WALK HOME
I walk to Tate Modern and watch people. The backdrop I hear is music that reminds me of Berlin. Inside the museum, I keep the music in my ears and I find the Poetry and Dream Exhibit. I walk past surrealist paintings but don't stop, only glance. I read that for the poets and artists of the surrealist movement, dreams stand for all aspects of the world repressed by rationalism. I nod my head but I'm pretty sure it's to the beat, not the information.
DIE GEDANKEN SIND FREI, BRAZILIAN GIRLS
All of a sudden I remember a dream I had the night before. I was terrified because I looked at a building and it exploded into flame. It leaned in my direction and started to fall, all orange, burning.
EARLIER BAGHDAD, T BONE BURNETT
I notice a television set high in the corner. The camera is behind the shoulders of a man in a grey shirt who walks down a city street. I think New York or Philly. He gets to the curb and a garbage man pushes a cart of bins in the middle of the street and the grey shirt man falls out of the frame. I think he's tripped off the curb.
More paintings. I don't stop.
NEW WORLD, BJORK
I take a right into a gallery full of functional-looking sculptures. If they weren't in a museum, I would definitely sit on them.
TWILIGHT, ANTONY AND THE JOHNSONS
There is a window in the corner and I note that outside it is twilight.
KREUZBERG, BLOC PARTY
I see something that I am allowed to sit on: an empty ottoman in a semi-circle of ottomans. They face a small screen hung from the ceiling. I sit and watch. It appears that a series of paintings are projected to create ongoing movement. Water splotches jump around the screen as a man in a grey suit walks with his hands clasped behind his back.
SWEATSHOP, BRAZILIAN GIRLS
The man is on a brown path, green to his left. The brush strokes in his grey jacket shift around as he takes steps. I have a feeling that nothing is going to happen. I'll think that the projection is a nice idea but I'll get up and move on, bored.
But the man looks over his shoulder and it really feels like he's looking at me. He's wearing black glasses and his face changes color from olive to white for a second. He looks back to the ground in front of him. I write something in my journal about how this painting just stared at me.
When I look up, a little painted dog comes into the picture from the opposite direction. He passes the man and the man falls to his knees, both hands on the ground. The man just gets up and walks on, hands back behind his back. Every time I look down to write and then watch again, I see a new detail.
OTHER SIDE, LONG WALK HOME
When I've had enough, I get up to read the card on the wall. The artist is Francis Alys and the piece is called The Last Clown. Suddenly my music sounds muddy and I take my headphones off. I realize that I missed a whole element of the piece: the clown music and laughter piped in from a speaker by the wall. For a second, I think that's a bummer but then decide I like my version.
DANSE DE TRAVERS, ERIK SATIE
Another television with a video shot on a city street. This time the camera is right behind a dog's head. Hold on a second, I'm having an idea. I think all these pieces are related and I'm just now getting it.
ALL IS FULL OF LOVE, BJORK
Francis Alys lives in Mexico City and loves chance encounters and absurdities of everyday life. The Last Clown is based on a real incident when he was walking in London's Hyde Park with a curator who was tripped by a passing dog. Francis Alys likes humor and surprise and he also likes walking. Sometimes he observes and sometimes he disrupts everyday situations. The Last Clown is passive compared to some of his work. Alys is an instigator!
JIQUE, BRAZILIAN GIRLS
There are nine videos scattered around the galleries that show a man being tripped by a dog from different viewpoints. Together they are called Choques and you get the whole story only if you watch all nine videos. I only find eight. In the eighth one, I notice that the man is wearing Converse and I catch another man come into the frame and clap his arms together. CUT.
MAN IS THE BABY, ANTONY AND THE JOHNSONS
Francesca Woodman photography. I haven't heard of her and I instantly like her images: small, moody, black and white, indoors. Nudity in unexpected positions. I read on the wall that she killed herself in her apartment at age 22 and my face flushes and my nose fills with fluid and I have to swallow to keep myself from crying. Where did that emotion come from?
GNOSSIENNE NO.1, ERIK SATIE
There's a darkened room around the corner where a film is shown but I'm so full of Francis and Francesca, I can't digest anything or anyone else.
BIRD GERHL, ANTONY AND THE JOHNSONS
I was going to meet Joanna hours ago and I leave. I don't want to be late for dinner.