That great, happy little moment in this talk when Cornel West says that “Try a Little Tenderness” is not the same as “Say My Name” and bell hooks is so delighted by the statement that she has to reach out and touch his hand in agreement.
Love Sounds, a 24 hour audio history of love in cinema, will have its first screening at Spectacle theater in New York City on November 4 (Part 1) & 5 (Part 2). The screening will be of the 4 hour cut.
Thinking about Duchamp’s antidote to retinal art—what he referred to as “visual indifference.” I made a sound film/archive about love and took all the faces and stars (stardom) out of it. Not using a readymade, but making a readymade.
I’ve always liked to hear things more than I like to see things. Or I lean on words, not images, and am especially hard on words because of it. I see after I feel what’s it like to hear. Or because I’ve heard something that has pricked up my ears. Opened my eyes.
I’ve been building this archive inside my head-heart all my life. Making work to be able to live. How in an email about Love Sounds kenotype wrote “I was thinking how for me it’s important to live.” That philosophy is there to assist us in thinking about how to live better, not just think better. Or that truly/truthfully thinking better is living better.
Duchamp: “…it was always the idea that came first, not the visual example; …a form of denying the possibility of defining art.”
There is this way in which I am expected to always generate all readings and interpretations of my work. That’s the critic’s job. It’s enough that I am a writer/artist who does critical, conceptually generated work. That my work comes from a place of ideas, analysis, and formal experimentation. But that doesn’t mean I am going to step in every time someone freezes up emotionally and mentally around my work and expects me to do the work of reading and thinking for them.
“This writing is all fake (copied from other writing) so you should go away and not read any of it.”
Phantom Work: “If there’s one thing of which we are dispossessed it’s the things which we’ve made, that we believe we made. They’re things that never belong to us. Not before, during or after.” (Jacques Rivette)
Godard on the future of cinema in Wim Wenders’ documentary, Room 666:
“Films are made, images are made, when there’s no one looking. That’s what the invisible is, that which we don’t see. That’s what the incredible is, that which we don’t see. And cinema shows you that which we don’t see, the incredible.”
The 4 hour cut of Love Sounds is done as of today.
I wanted to go all the way with this idea of cinema showing us the invisible and the incredible in Love Sounds (showing through not showing), which is an attempt at imagining a new future of/for (post)cinema. And for love.
I discuss my interest in the ontology and “invisible” topologies of the voice and listening in this interview about Love Dog and digital writing, and how/why I conceptualize the sonic in relation to the discourse of love.
If Love Sounds has tried to be anything/to be an answer to something, it’s a record of this (coincidentally on Kara Jesella’s tumblr today):
We move into and come to love.
Tristan and Isolde is scarcely the story,
women at least should know the difference
between love and death. No poison cup,
no penance. Merely a notion that the tape-recorder
should have caught some ghost of us: that tape-recorder
not merely played but should have listened to us,
and could instruct those after us:
this we were, this is how we tried to love,
and these are the forces they had ranged against us,
and theses are the forces we had ranged within us,
within us and against us, against us and within us.
“Anxiety is when we must know something we do not know. There is no creation without anxiety. There is always anxiety. Anxiety is the sign of the new Real. Too much Real. A Real which is an excess of Real. Courage is the effect which gives human animals the means to go beyond anxiety. There is a dialectical relationship between courage and anxiety. Anxiety indicates that there is really something new for the subject.”
On anxiety (anxiety has no external object. Anxiety comes from within) and faith:
Kierkegaard, from “Anxiety as Saving Through Faith”:
"In one of Grimm’s folktales there is a story of a young man who went out in search of adventure in order to learn what it is to be anxious…As a beast or an angel, a human being could not be made anxious. Through being a synthesis a human being can be made anxious, and the more profoundly, the greater the human being. Not, however, in the usual sense in which anxiety is about something external, about something outside a person, but in the sense that it is the person himself who produces anxiety. Only in this sense can the words be understood when it is said of Christ that he was grieved unto death, as well as the words Christ spoke to Judas: Do quickly what you are going to do. Not even the terrifying verse that made Luther himself anxious when preaching on it: "My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?", not even these words express suffering as strongly. For what these latter signify is a condition Christ finds himself in, the former a relation to a condition that is not.
Anxiety is freedom’s possibility; this anxiety alone is, through faith, absolutely formative, since it consumes all finite ends, discovers all their deceptions. And no Grand Inquisitor has such frightful torments in readiness as has anxiety, and no secret agent knows as cunningly how to attack the suspect in his weakest moment, or to make so seductive the trap in which he will be snared; and no discerning judge understands how to examine, yes, exanimate [exanimere: dishearten], the accused as does anxiety, which never lets him go, not in diversion, not in noise, not at work, not by day, not by night.
Anyone formed by anxiety is shaped by possibility, and only the person shaped by possibility is cultivated according to his infinitude. Possibility is therefore the most difficult of all categories. It is true that we often hear the opposite, that possibility is so light, while in actuality it is so heavy. But from whom do we hear such words? From a few wretches who do not know what possibility is, and who, when they were shown by actuality that they were good for nothing and always would be, had mendaciously spruced up a possibility that was then ever so fine, so enchanting, and this possibility was at bottom no more than a little youthful frivolity of which one should rather be ashamed. The possibility said to be so light is usually thought of as the possibility of happiness, good fortune, etc. But this, absolutely, is not possibility: it is a lying that human depravity has tricked up in order to have some reason to complain at life, and at Governance, and an occasion to be self-important. No, in possibility, all things are equally possible and anyone truly brought up by possibility has grasped the terrifying just as well as the smiling.
…for an individual to be formed thus absolutely and infinitely by possibility, that individual must be honest toward possibility and have faith. By faith I understand here what Hegel, somewhere, characteristically and very rightly, calls the inner certainty that anticipates infinity. When the discoveries of possibility are honestly administered, possibility will discover all finitudes but idealize them in the shape of infinity, in anxiety overwhelm the individual, until the individual again overcomes them in the anticipation of faith…By cheating possibility, which molds the individual, an individual never arrives at faith…So when an individual, through anxiety, is formed to faith, anxiety will then eradicate what it itself produces. Anxiety discovers fate, but when the individual would entrust itself to fate, anxiety switches around and takes fate away; for fate, like anxiety, and anxiety like possibility, is a witch’s letter.”
*”brought up by possibility.” The idea that one can be raised/reared by something like this. Possibility and faith as value system, ethos, ethic.
Kierkegaard stating “Whoever has learned to be anxious in the right way has learned the ultimate…It is an adventure that every human being has to live through, learning to be anxious so as not to be ruined either by never having been in anxiety or by sinking into it” is what Avital Ronell means when she says that anxiety is the mode of ethicity par excellence.