Sometimes I forget to breath. When I become aware of this, I take deep breaths, I try to remember. I have tried to pay attention, when this happens, why it happens, and then I forget again. Philip Guston consoled Painters "to live without consolation, to keep their eyes wide open, and to not look away." The studio is a place to sit with things, there is work to be done. There is a lot to sit with. I had been in my studio far too long. Solitude, my best and worst friend. The Museum of Modern Art was having an exhibit of Alberto Giacometti's works. That was a good reason to leave the studio and possible going to the World Trade Center Site. Maybe not. Had it become a tourist attraction? The Giacometti show was astounding. There weren't many people in the museum that day., two days after 9/11. I felt privileged to be there. It had the intimacy and directness of a studio visit. A primitive simplicity. Gallery through gallery his work sang. I listen to the compassion for man kind. his life's work. To see all the works together, so powerful, but vulnerable. After spending two days at the museum, long forgotten words entered my thoughts. "Don't seek what your sage's found, seek what they sought." Giacometti had left a trail. Trusting my instincts, I went to the museum of African Art Bamana and the Art of Existence of Mali, ancestral tribal images, so majestic, which we had inherited? The conflict I originally had of going to Ground 0 no longer existed. Now it was necessary. A place to pay respect. Pockets brimming with tissues, I would not need them. I felt detached. Closer and closer, I wanted to feel something, beside the numbness. The magnitude of this hate was too much to comprehend. At some point a relationship between the art and the tragedy impacted me, all came out of the vulnerability. The primitive in all of us had surfaced. Not contaied behind the guarded museum walls. I am not sure what I came away with but questions. What does it mean to be human? It was time to return to solitude of the studio, and remember to breath.
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