Zoe Catherine Kendall, artist, writer and human...


Sunday, 2 May 2010

Wandering spaceships, we are always alone

This is in a sense true. We are seperated from all other things by our bodies, the place where we reside. Our minds cannot be visited by other minds, nor can we recline fully in another's thoughts. When we know what someone means, we know it through what we know, we know it differently. We cannot really cross the divide into another's being, we cannot really 'be together as one' but rather, two seperate creatures, sharing proximity and notion. This is the unique experience of a human being, being alone amongst others, the mind isolating as it unites.

But many of us are stiving for togetherness and intimacy, many of us are not content with the state of independence with which we live. You know what i mean, like when you have a thought that you think is funny or significant, and immediately, instead of revelling in it just for yourself, you think - i want to share this with... such and such would love this.. i'll just put it on facebook... what is this if is not an attempt to feel less than alone, more together, more intune with another, less isolated within the self. 

But why do we try to draw those connections, what is it we are trying to create or sustain? Is it a grip on the world outside ourselves? Is it a bouy keeping us from drifting far away into our minds...

As an artist i feel i have gotten to grips with this concept of being alone through the necessity for self expression. What could make one feel more isolated then the gulf between their articulation and it's reception? An attempt to connect paired with a refusal to engage. Eventually one may decide that it is ok for their audience to be as conceptual and abstract as the art that they create, but this nevertheless emphasizes the spaces between all creatures. We inhabit one body. We may eventually come to terms with this independence. As Anthony Gormley says, this will be how we learn...

"Our bodies come out of other bodies. In a sense our primary experience is of dwelling within the realm of another. We learn how to listen, how to move, how to attend to the world, within a totally protected realm. Then, at birth, that is taken away from us. We are made into an object that in a sense is separated by space and skin. We are always in a relational field. There are a few moments, maybe in intimate love or moments of total immersion in an immersion tank, where we might recover something of that primal condition. But in the end, we are born alone and we die alone.

In a sense, that is the human condition: that we are lost in space, from the moment that we separate from the body that contained us originally. This could be a tragedy, a kind of existential loss, but I don’t think it is at all. I don’t think of the condition of “aloneness” of the human consciousness as being a limitation. It’s actually the great challenge and inspiration that each of us has. In a way we are spaceships. At that moment of birth we set upon a journey in time and space, and we have to use it as well as we can. " Read more.

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