I n t e r l o c u t i o n

*This bLOG was a learning recourse for MA & BA Creative Practice & Creative Writing learners from all levels & countries - and celebrates Authorial Practice; 

Also read by aspiring writers, published ones, to seek inspiration 

The author of this Log is myself

It is important to remember that in all learning 'results' are not always readily evident as immediate results or tactile things  - real growth is a slower journey - be that in your tactile practice, writing or music - and importantly your development as a person - it is normal that sands unsettle and settle - do remember and normalise that while studying. thinking, practising.

Hardy / Larkin / Eliot -  Moments  & Momentum 

Seminar notes:

To look out or look in - or is that the same thing ? 

Thomas Hardy's poetry was, said Larkin, the major influence on his work ....
I'll begin with a quote from Larkin; 

"I don't think Hardy, as a poet, is a poet for young people. I know it sounds ridiculous to say I wasn't young at twenty-five or twenty-six, but at least I was beginning to find out what life was about, and that's precisely what I found in Hardy. In other words, I'm saying that what I like about him primarily is his temperament and the way he sees life. He's not a transcendental writer, he's not a Yeats, he's not an Eliot; his subjects are men, the life of men, time and the passing of time, love and the fading of love... When I came to Hardy it was with the sense of relief that I didn't have to try and jack myself up to a concept of poetry that lay outside my own life -- this is perhaps what I felt Yeats was trying to make me do. One could simply relapse back into one's own life and write from it. Hardy taught one to feel rather than to write - of course one has to use one's own language and one's own jargon and one's own situations -- and he taught one as well to have confidence in what one felt. I have come, I think, to admire him even more than I did then." 

Larkins quote is Cited from The Poetry of Hardy 'Required Writing' 1955-1982 Faber 1983), p175-176.

Here is Hardy's Poem 

The Self Unseeing. 1901

Here is the ancient floor, 
Footworn and hollowed and thin, 
Here was the former door 
Where the dead feet walked in. 

She sat here in her chair, 
Smiling into the fire; 
He who played stood there, 
Bowing it higher and higher. 

Childlike, I danced in a dream; 
Blessings emblazoned that day; 
Everything glowed with a gleam
Yet we were looking away.

The reason why this poem by Hardy is held in such high regard - why it is extraordinary, is the notion that they were 'looking away' 

They were naturally immersed in the moment- in their natures - as a family. Hardy's family. 
The poem is like the scene in A Christmas Carol 1843 where Scrooge visits his own childhood with the ghost and looks in on his own family dynamics as an unseen voyeur. This revelation alters his future state. It is transformative for him. As it was for George Bailey in 'Its a Wonderful Life'.

This is the great paradox. Hardy, the jigging child and his fiddle playing parent are experiencing the happy 'glow' because they are not observing it intellectually and spoiling it. To look too closely at it would dispel the freedom of the moment and cast a shadow of 'duration' over proceedings. This 'knowing' always delivers a blow - to discover something is ephemeral is always a sad moment and moment-um is lost

To self consciously over 'observe' ones own experiences exposes the moment. This is not to say one should not appreciate the moment as adults. Of course this is the appreciation that Hardy is saying we lack - a mindfulness. It is a fine line. Real revelation can be intense and only pops up once or twice in a lifetime. The 'glow' and the 'gleam' state in the poem cannot be manufactured nor last. It is a magical thing when it occurs naturally - inside our own 
vivarium.  (Vivarium. Latin, literally for 'Place of life')

When very young tis better to spring about - care free and unknowing. Ideally, life should not 'see itself' too intensely as a child. This kind of self awareness can be like rising to the surface from deep ocean too quickly - and cause 'the bends'. 

Then later, when one appreciates the past, one should 
not feel longing for it. ''The future is in the instant'' and 'nostalgia' as Shakespeare knew, is bullshit. 

Yes, it is nourishing to celebrate the days we made - and to see the deep value in them - and our experiences shall become the engines that inform us - so we should celebrate the present much more. 

This conflation of the previous and the current are what fuels propulsion - going forward but not in a rush - nice and steady - self aware. 

* So firing in the present (a creative act, gift, a 'present') is a fine thing
The Poem encapsulates Hardy's experience. It too is a capsule, propelled into the future - just like Voyager (the Space craft we talk of below that carries all those musical occupants), 

She sat here in her chair, 
Smiling into the fire; 
He who played stood there, 
Bowing it higher and higher. 

By writing this down Thomas Hardy took them all into forever - we absorbed it in the here and now - but it will be read again and again - time and time over

'Days are where we live'' who ( much later ) said these lines ?


What are days for?
Days are where we live.
They come, they wake us
Time and time over.
They are to be happy in:
Where can we live but days?
Ah, solving that question
Brings the priest and the doctor
In their long coats
Running over the fields.

Philip Larkin 1953

* And lastly - in terms of lineage and influence. See this poem by TS Eliot 1943 that was born out of reading Shakespeare and Hardy's unseen moment poem discussed above. 

The unattended moment, the moment in and out of time,
The wild thyme unseen, the winter lightning
Or the waterfall, or music heard so deeply
That it is not heard at all, but you are the music
While the music lasts. 

This poem from 'Four Quartets' once again re- enforcing Eliot’s more metaphysical spiritual tone and melancholy inner life at that time .... an almost, 'oh no, its too late' type of post appreciation or longing for lost life. Don't be like Eliot. Eliot cheered up later on after meeting Esme Valerie - his own music lasted until 1965

*Our experiences become the engines that inform us - so we should celebrate the present much more. This conflation of the previous and the current are what fuels propulsion - going forward but not in a rush - nice and steady - self aware

For Sholars: It is important to remember that in all learning 'results' are not always readily evident as immediate results or tactile things  - real growth is a slower journey - be that in your tactile practice, writing or music - and importantly your development as a person - it is normal that sands unsettle and settle - do remember and normalise that while studying. thinking, practising 


I n t e r l o c u t i o n 

Navigating - listening - hearing 

March 2020 Lockdown demo

Nostromo (cosmic ship mates) 

A full transcription of a conversation between me, the author & Ms E. Ripley aboard 'The Nostromo' .... her superluminal time ship - this is a chronotopic conversation on equanimity and on distance travelled - written from afar during the first weeks of lockdown 2020

Song 1

n  o  s  t  r  o  m  o

'nostromo' is Italian for shipmates - Conrads novel & the name of Ripley's space ship

narrative workshop / zine / novella / creative writing demo - tutor mm

The 'Nostromo' text below on friendship shows us 'non linear framing' in real time. This is NOT fiction as such  - as it is real in our daily inner life, as expression, dreams - art - musical composition - theatre, popular culture - it is inter dimensionality in real time. Conflating context and circumstance & real events - merging popular myth and chronotopic time.

Below, in the scripted account, the man and woman are human beings  - almost genderless - they are 'people. Their duet is out of time & context, but as in greek mythic tradition their time here is theirs alone and they can exclusively converse. Of course Walser & Sebald, Shakespeare and Marvel did this better than most but also see Dickens, Haruki Murakami, Ursula Le Guin, Douglas Adams. How they use amalgam, metafiction, analogy, autobiography, humour in split narrative

More than anything express your own narratives - your self - this is the thing you actually know most about. The other knowledge you have learnt is 'received information' not experiential - but you can assimilate this into expression too of course. We can do it in pictures, words, film, music. Indeed, it is all poetics. 
Remember to speculate with the reader or learner in dialogue and conversation - mirror and offer up knowledge - don't be a know all - a guru - all of us really know nothing !

Opposites can be harmonious or integrated to form a closer approximation of the balance of a person or the truth of a situation - perhaps a palindrome or a mirror too of the whole. I
s this a combined duet of the the constant and the elusive ?

*Our experiences become the engines that inform us - so we should celebrate the present much more. This conflation of the previous and the current are what fuels propulsion - going forward but not in a rush - nice and steady - self aware

N o s t r o m o   -  I n t e r l o c u t e r s 

Duet : Music in 12 parts - part 1

Ripley - Good evening - you finally got up here 

mm  I did - It's good to see you - if indeed a little cramped here - aboard your fine ship - have you any water ? 

Ripley -  Yes plenty of water, the engines run off it - sort of -  but I have whisky ? 
Didn't you once write about Proust and Orwell and of friendship ? 

mm  Yes I did once via an old seminar paper I wrote with some quotes from Orwell and Proust - I wrote about 'Nostromo' too - Conrads fine novel - and the name of your snug ship too -   thinking about it now the novel is all about Human nature and Character - character is shaped as we evolve  - for the better if we watch and listen. We evolve and try to cause and affect good as best we can - we are all enmeshed with others - it has responsibility, commitment , duty - such are the themes of Conrads novels and his 'Apocalypse Now' book. But when younger yes I was like a rocket - impulsive, burnt bright.

Ripley  Yes I understand that too - brightness - and also on the subject of Rockets - rocket ships - well Yes. I know this strength of character as I was a strong one too, dutiful  -  but acceptance, responsibility, I think you are talking about such things, yes. 
Understanding - balance.

mm  Yes equanimity is key ...and I think an adventurous personality in anyone may be bound up by reality. We wrestle with that 'nature' and instinct - adventurism, urge, versus pragmatism - then there is the rare or shared gifts we see in others - rare qualities and people, encounters like this.. 

Chronotope time  - how we are able to be up here now. You know this science more than I  - your brain - do explain it to me in 22nd Century code and verse next time - because I used to try and figure it out way back in the 20th Century 

Ripley Figuring everything out often spoils it though - so maybe I wont quantify it.

mm They say all the worlds a stage but this is not so as we move on in much later years - however I used to be quite restless - and couldn't stay still for long  - so for me, my expression, work, career and study was a means of navigating that. Normal really. Through such experiences we reflect and see where we have landed  - and youv'e landed this ship in a few hairy places I imagine ?

This was one of the hardest things - to re-adjust after serious injury - become slower, I found it hard to accept. 
Yet this then makes a good teacher - as this localises and magnifies knowledge and experience and brings it into focus to support others.

Ripley - Yes, yes  and yes ..... oh, I sound like Molly Bloom's famous melodious soliloquy  :)

mm:  ... the responsibility - the meaning of which Milan Kundera writes so well - you know that particular book - 'The Unbearable Lightness of being' - where carefree lightness / indifference, individualism is seen profiled next to weight, purpose, responsibility and meaning - good influence on others.

Kundera knew that weight is an experiential felt reality not a theoretical text - it is something the very young won't grasp until later,  no matter how erudite – but nor should they experience that too soon - a hard lesson you don't wish upon others - it is very like Larkins clever poem too. ''My life is for me. As well ignore gravity'' (weight) 

Ripley;  Yes  - I know ....I liked the Milan K book - but yes, it's heavy – it is unfair at times isn’t it ..... Yes and the Larkin poem too about not being selfish yes – its funny too - spot on.

mm: It doesn't have to be unfair though does it - if it is understood. Ideally friendship with ones self, ones work, ones instruments - and with others should transcend scrutiny without losing meaning - and not be quantified or balanced

Ripley  This is an uncomfortable truth - meaning is key to a fruitful life - but having a meaningful life need not be heavy – induce worry -  and nor should lightness be seen just as some vapid hedonism etc. I think lightness of feeling can be achieved internally with the right qualia - for example biolphilia is a two way thing - nature is us too -  people too - its not just trees or sky etc - it's the reception - the vibration - its a harmony thing isn't it. Peace is good not just sturm & drang.

mm Yes, life is too short for burden and drama - it has to be worked through - and this takes us back to the concept of 'eternal return' - yet I think you can have that concept of learning within the one life - not wait for the next  - so, if you lived fast and then adjust down through the gears to slow - then its really just like going through seasons. Another vibration - frequency.

Ripley: - yes I agree - I have strong views on this too - and I love my ship ( smiles) 

mm: Yes I know you do - it has a good smell too - lived in  - natural - no diesel or petrol ! ( laughs) - clean technology - shipshape - tumbled engines.

I think  the 'rub' or paradox is that sincere earnest thinkers do over cogitate and as with all meaningful things it then becomes over observed - and it disturbs and detracts - sets up a false internal 'determination' - in the real sense of the word.
It explains why I've always liked unfinished things in embryonic states  -  it's interesting, but no one likes films or box sets to end if enjoying and invested in them - so isn't that a normal human trait ? It's also a being in the moment state -  and not complying to this rule of linear time - which is too finite

Ripley Well I suppose it depends totally on the context of the middle and ending - but as a child I remember always never wanting a ride to stop, if I was a young girl flying about on dodgems, swings - slides - it's ones 'time' being halted and called in isnt it - when out on the boating lake -  ''come in number one your time is up'' etc  - so it's a rejection of being controlled - of endings - a full stop - I get that yes. 
Peace from authority - ones own Ebb and Flo  -  ownership, agency - a momentum. 

It's about mortality - time - living life - Something I know about too - thanks to cryogenic deep sleep taking my time away. I was in deep freeze for over 60 years ! 
So I lost time too, like you.

You said it yourself - you burned bright and used to be restless  - quite peripatetic (she said) - so there you are. 

M - yes, peripatetic

mm  Yes ,- yet it wasn't escapism - more about engagement and fascination in the subject - it was a resistance too. But when one becomes too insular or too busy then you can close off or burn out - so it has to be managed well. A young gun steams ahead regardless - its a learning curve for them. I was forced to mature and slow down by injury.

Ripley This is where lightness or equanimity works - because that kind of settled lightness is only achieved through also knowing the weight and ones limits etc . 
So yes age and time is seasonal like you said, - its something to experience  - you cannot know one without having knowledge of the other on route. 

mm Yes,  I try to teach that or suggest it - but you cannot, can you - it has to be known, found out by the individual. If we refer to the 1901 Hardy poem I showed on here  - you maybe knew it anyway - and if we look at 20th century quantum theory then we also see that 'observation' causes the sub atomic wave to collapse –  or act out - and acts like a catalyst or script as it were - offering multiple possible split narratives. One of those is an unhappy one - one a mistake, the other relaxed - another deep and ecstatic etc - so we have to see and accept the full prism / gamut and not judge singular outcomes - as there are many - a bigger picture. 

It is a good state of a mind for a learner to try to understand and absorb  - especially for a very self critical learner or person - this acceptance of accepting variables and slowness encourages non judgement of their daily / weekly / monthly growth, output and actions - less worry etc. Only time brings equanimity etc. So patient teaching finds a way to try alleviate this self scrutiny for sincere learners. 

Ripley Teaching is often cloaking something - a deeper substance beneath the cloak for them to find themselves - wrap it in a fine silk so they wish to wear it and then you just hope they look under the cloak a bit further - beyond the 'material' surface.

mm   One hopes the curious ones will yes - It is our human need for curiosity - to seek and observe. Einsteins 'spooky action' law – - the behaviour based on the observation - the wave collapsing – the concept of 'the imagined' enacting its own 'affect' - that is how real learning  takes place - a trail of connections - it is not fully understood by any known physicist, not back in 2020 anyway - but by poets maybe yes - who sense serendipity and who are less hung up on empiricisms. 
Yet we all see it occur and feel it at times. Yes, the whole quantum , parallel / multi Universe theory really is a mind f*** .  Explain it for me one day.

Ripley. Ok no problemo - I did it in 4th grade - I memorised it in under a day ;)

mm If it is indeed about waves and receptions & tuning - then it should be a melodious experience - no ?

Ripley :  Yes, It should  - often fleetingly in the scheme of practical things - it shouldnt cause upset or worry though - if understood.

mm  Recognition arises through sensing  - not just via familiarity. It is atavistic or quantum sensing ? A molecular thing ? I don't know.

Ripley  Yes, for example my cat Jones - we are a good team - non verbal communication - but he's very old now ....so I will have to adjust or reanimate him again (laughs) 

mm  Human Language in all its forms - perhaps with the exception of music - is classed by some cynical smart minds as the great anomaly in our evolution - a spoiler - the  fly in the soup - - or the 'ghost in the machine' of the human mind  -  For better or worse it has indeed structured our 'civilised' flawed society thus far. But really the arrogance is in some people - their hubris or solipsism - 'their' language -  self serving - yes, they are the antagonists - often Males -  repressed - obsessed by the material and by status.

Ripley : Through Love and War - and Peace (Tolstoy) - language has caused issues yes - and so here we are in 2120 ...  and its still the way - we are still here but only just. We've avoided a lot of War and brinkmanship.

Yes for all its creativity 'language' can also open up divisive gateways of confusion, judgement and dilemma  -  black and white thinking – cause and effect - skewered outcomes  - over planning - and goal getting -  If I do this – then this road opens up or this happens etc - as opposed to a more sanguine or amorphous way - where a day to day navigation of things is ok - where opposites seem to exist harmoniously. Un-noticed.

For me it's like the difference of being inside this space suit .... restricting my breathing and my senses - or being free. 

Yes, the mind does restrict us with its complexities - too many choices - I admit. 

Some of them deep and difficult 

mm  ; yes, It is a very good mind set for some to not set up high expectations.This ethos is now accepted more in 2020 as a relaxing thought process less than a directionless meander. It can can be implemented too with awareness of both navigation and of change. Opposites can merge to form a closer truth.

 I'm tired ... are you ?  Look below, the ship is now floating lower  -  we are just passing over Thule and then in 12 minutes or so we will be over Snow, Yorkshire  - they won't see us though - we are cloaked. Here come the dolomites on the horizon curve. Look.

Can a walker still encounter Eidelweiss on her south face ?

... I really really hope so. I do love that song .....

and what of the white throat of the Wolverine 

Look, they are like Stars 

mm ;  Ha! Yes, Snod the plateau, yes, I see it on the horizon yes ..... magical, why am I not surprised. Yes, I am a little tired now. 

Madmen, solopsism and hubris yes, I think we have to be strong as people but also have humour and be self deprecating about ourselves as a race - hubris is ugly. ...... Woody Allen - you remember him , he did humour and flawed human condition so well - despite his detractors  - ‘Hannah and her Sisters’ for example - and 'Husbands and Wives’. and 'Annie Hall'. Weren't you in that one ?

Ripley    :)   Yes I did act in that film , in another life !  His best films are philosophical, clever , funny movies - humour, empathy and warmth - it's what has kept our race from oblivion - he loved Bergman- who was his hero. Bergman knew a thing or two about people  

mm  Philosophy via humour is the hard poke - the dose of reality that comes around  to  always remind us of our personal place in the wider scheme of things – it scales us down – our egos - and asks us very precisely - who are we ? and how we sit with others. Dialetical thinking or prism thinking (as I like to call it )- and a big dose of warm humour or slice of irony cake can accept and overcome the harsher realities - and help sustain friendships and form new ones. 
Bergman, now that's serious film.

Ripley     Hey, you know that chap Zizek ? Your 21st century chap) well he recently - in your 2020 time zone anyway not mine obviously - well he, with his tongue placed in cheek and yet also with great seriousness - he recently called love a great evil? Love,which he is a great believer in - he's a sensitive man - yet he saw it as a confusing concept - a motion trying to calibrate and conflate two minds  - the dramas of conflict and the expectations - the dependency - the co dependency - versus independence.

mm Yes I read some of his books and saw his documentary on film, on Hitchcock - his narrative was good espewcially on Vertigo and The Birds. Yes, I like him - he talks a lot about human warmth and his feelings, in his rants and writing.. 

Ripley  I like this quote by Billy Shakes - is it from The Tempest ?  Let me see if i can remember it as we drop more drops  ..... what time do you have to set off back ? Are you tired ?  I have some RV for that - you know Vivaldi.

Ok, here goes - I'll try recite the Billy Shakes piece  - clears throat ; 

“Our revels now are not yet ended. 

These our actors, 

As I foretold you, were all spirits melted into air

And, like the fabric of this vision, 

The cloud-capp’d moons, these tumbled engines 

The solemn hall, the great globe itself, 

All which we inherit, shall dissolve 

And, like this wondrous pageant fade, 

Leave not a rack behind. 

 We are such stuff as dreams are made on, 

1st September

''Look below, the ship is now floating lower  -  we are just passing over Thule and then in 12 minutes or so we will be over Snow  - they wont see us though - we are cloaked''.

The ship passed over about half a mile above the earth.
The moon to the West

 The engines were silent 

They looked down onto the North and onto snow 

After long natural silence ......

''Marmolada's glacier will be coming up soon beneath us - look, we are floating very fast ... 

Marmolada, the glacier of the Dolomites 

Did you know she has been measured every year since 1902 and was seen as the natural barometer to your inevitable 20th century climate change - she lost 80% of her volume up to the year of 2020 ..... imagine her original size.

Imagine her monumental size in the time of Hildegard VB or Cleopatra or King Caratacus 

Caratacus - the only Ancient British Chief - captured as a trophy and paraded around Rome in chains - yet what a clemency speech he must have given that emperor.

He was freed on the spot and lived as a free man in Rome !


*footnote:  These extracts show non linear framing in real time - this is normal in everyday inner life, dreams - art - musical composition - script - - musings - conversations with ourselves and or non verbal communications -  navigating. It is inter dimensionality - expression - and as a species, we do it all the time - 

medical neomonclature  'Chrono-tRopic means 'effects that change the heart beat' - pulse pulse pulse 

'Bundle of His' ( Mr His was a german heart specialist)

But Chrono-topic ( no R ) is different - it is how time is navigated by hero -heroine - in terms of context, closeness / distance and space within a myth, literary or real narrative  / a metaphysical or physical duet - constancy adventure  - legend - mythic time  - real time - sleep - heart beat - see below 

Adventure Time in greek myth is Chronotopic time, where as above changing aspects of time and space are achieved. The ancient Greek story has “adventure time” for hero and heroine where their own duetto developments do not impact upon other characters; This space in which their adventures happens, is effectively theirs alone. ''

music slows the heart rate / beat - Bach Vivaldi Eno Reich Glass - and lifts the heart to vitreous lustre 

Latin 'vitreus' - glass like -  the eye's interior is filled with vitreous

Restrictions of 'linear time 'frustrate some of us - I think about it a lot - and always have. Music is a muse in this respect, of achieving NON linear time. 

Autumn films for curricula 

 meta narrative - liberty - the oneiric - autumn 

Recommended gentle Spanish Film below - a fine nod to Mary Shelley - see clips & stills  ..... influenced I suspect by Rural Northern classic 'Whistle Down the Wind'     
The Spirit of the Beehive is a 1973 Spanish drama film directed by Víctor Erice. The film was Erice's debut and is considered a masterpiece of Spanish cinema. I'm not sure if a new HD restored version is available to stream at Criterion


Whistle Down The Wind - the north 


N e w   p a r a d i g m s 

Person as the magical soft machinery not just the instrument - frequency - outcomes 

Arriving full circle last week - on quoting below the reassuring passage from Shakespeare ( in my Ripley / mm Interlocutions demo )

“Our revels now are not yet ended. 

These our actors, 

As I foretold you, were all spirits melted into air

Through immersing the mind via creative practice we preserve a human ability to connect to these elusive dimensions - that are otherwise oblique.

As Lorca said above - the creative - poet - musician - painter - is a 'medium' for transmission. I'll paraphrase myself and PL with this old combined quote also.  'Poetics should begin with emotion in the maker and end with the same emotion in the reader / listener - The piece itself is simply the instrument of transference' 

So we must celebrate the Person as the magical soft machinery not just the instrument - frequency - outcomes 

Beneath the Mills stack 
Ebor 42552

Cultural capital is gained via creative growth- yes, via books, literature, music, film.etc but mostly by CURIOSITY. Creative Schools act as catalysts for shaping self awareness & personal growth - especially in an era of compartmentalised filtered cultural traffic. 

Seeking things out, giving - receiving 

Wayth-men ware commendyd gude 

collage 'Vivarium' by mm 2007 -  terroir, a topography - soil / growth - beginnings - a geology - the archeology of ourselves

cut of jib - poise - decorum - aura 

pearl - plateau - listening stations - vigilamus 

Liberators - kin - fighting national socialism - ardennes 1944

Vitreous Lustre - Poetrie - Shakespeare

Navigating - listening - steering - pearl

About nine years ago I embarked on a self initiated project. It grew from an interest in Circadian Rhythms, dimensionality and our perceptions of place and habitat. At first I didn't make any retinal work, no audible, material things. It rather became a two year internal recital / rehearsals. Like lots of live performance but unseen and unrecorded. It wasn't something I wished to corral or tame nor was I interested in seeking approval for it. By not writing it down I thought I may lose it or forget - but I have retained much of it in my character and outlook. It was better being allowed to marinate and not being petrified in a book or gallery. It was more organic and fluid in that feral way. Real, experiential sustained work. 

I named it 'Laburnum symphony' - and eventually there were traces of audible material - and yes, these physical outcomes did document the integrity of the work. I will post one up in July - a drawing, but these were less important to me than the connections and new knowledge gained. The manifested material works on paper were really only the spent cherry on top - the climax, and not as meaningful as the slower multi dimensional feelings felt throughout. 

There are two ways of looking and appreciating this - for example if we take the phenomena of  the pearl and oyster. The thousands of slow internal hours spent creating the pearl - or indeed the chrysalis producing the ethereal wooly moth. One person will contemplate the silent slow making as magic and remarkable while others appreciate more the neat beauty of the final revealed outcome or thing. We must do both I think - depending on our own calibrations and stages in life. 

Pearl farmers start the process of producing a cultured pearl in an oyster or mussel by delicately implanting a small piece of mantle tissue, the part of a mollusc that secretes shell-like material. Farmers might also add a bead of shell, typically from a freshwater mussel to help provide a nucleus for the pearl.
It is fruitful to have one of these slower contemplative projects ticking along next to the work you do for others. Like picking up a knapsack of health or nutrition in a daft digital game - it sustains new learning.

Remember it is what is inside your own shell, your nucleus, that will determine what you develop and learn - but do be relaxed about that - and do take your time as there is no deadline etc.

Growth and Individuation being a natural process or journey through self education and self realisation - to the development of individuality. Your own self. Knowing & becoming. The ongoing process - essential to the formation of authentic identity and being able to support others.

*The word corral from the Spanish word corro, means ring, Portuguese word curral, means pen or enclose. As a verb, corral = round up, gather up / collect / herd

'corral' to me, means to trap - to inhibit ones liberty!     

snod hill - laburnum symphony 

*In 2019 Laburnum Symphony was peer approved by Isobel Riley, Patsy Holmes and Moira Hutchinson and was subsequently awarded an honorary doctorate from the Governors & Society of Greenfield on the plateau - we agreed on informality and not to wear formal Royal Albert Hall RCA Ermine attire at the rural ceremony as pomp has no relevance to Greenfields northern 'learning fields' ;

During a storm, the fells impassable, 
Not at his village, but in wooden shape

 extract - by WH Auden - Alston Moor poem - learnt below Roman Wall 

listening stations 

Navigating - listening - steering - vigilamus

Drawing 'Tilt to see - to listen - to sense - on the Veld' - mm 2017

In my experiences in education and in life - with long periods of time spent in both tough areas and privileged areas - all the best people I have encountered have had to dig deep and dig in ... worked hard or studied life, and improved themselves often in order to support others - irrespective of class or money - it is more to do with ones nature and with an evolved perspective. This is something I understand - and recognise in others.
Teaching enables a space for constant reciprocal communal evaluation - discussion can frame things and gives insights beyond the individual act  - so yes it's very sustaining and 'Humanities' students are a pleasure to work with - so it's not work really - its a warm receptive space. Precious 

For learning as a student - it is crucial to remember that in creative education lateral conflated thinking is very important to foster self awareness and the investigative process (for teachers and professionals). 
The logical, straight laced personality can find this tumbled approach to learning abstract, random and often confusing.

 '' But It's like spaghetti'' I was once told by a student who was then aged about 26. 'Ok, I said, lets straighten some of it out - but you should really try to do that yourself - and in all the re-arranging you will find that you are learning learning learning''. 

Real life is constant change - and never straightforward. We bend the arrow whether we like it or not - said Robin to Marion.

Speculation and digression are important in teaching. It hands the learner their own 'agency' - via suggestions and prompts they have to contemplate and unwrap matters for themselves and are allowed to do so. In Arts education there is no designated route - indeed to pretend there is a right prescribed way is the wrong way. 

In any medium. New learners have to apply more lateral playful risk taking and new methodologies and have healthy periods of reflective evaluation. Elders can sound a little smug spouting about self growth - I do it and try to bite my tongue always - but in the scheme of things it is very interesting to ask & discover how they themselves acquired any levels of self awareness they may possess - it is often via harsh beginnings, by chance & circumstance - time ; and by being 'lived in' by life. An appreciation. 

To create interesting new things requires exploration, error, trial and patience and it requires the investment of both head and heart. Independent learning in adults can never come about by hand holding nor via mere prescribed facts or technical skills. 

Challenge and intrigue encourages independent thinking and enables what is called deep learning in Further and Higher education. Conceptual philosophical enquiry digging beneath the surface veneer of things. When one encounters learners who's own cognitive calibration closes up when challenged to think imaginatively or ask to be told ABC how to complete a creative task - then one has to be patient and readjust delivery for them. Having taught several technically 'trained' science graduates new forms of lateral creative practice at degree level - I can say some were very intuitive and receptive - others not so. I learned then that it is wrong to try shift people into different shapes if unsuited.

Question: Do you try to create imagined worlds in your work ?

Articulating any creative practice in words is never easy and yet we have to discuss it because it is such a deep and fascinating practice. I find it easier to talk about other peoples work and discuss my students work than my own output. Yet I am fascinated by the creative process which is why I love teaching this subject so much - so yes, I will happily talk about visual language and my inspirations for drawing but I will do it with my Academic hat on as that will help me be more objective. I think Cocteau was right when he said "Asking an artist to talk about his work is like asking a plant to discuss horticulture." 

To try to answer that question. 'Do I try to create imagined worlds? I'd say no, not as such. For me, imagined worlds has certain connotations of being escapist, or 'made up' and that’s not what drawing is about for me. I think it is about engaging rather than escaping – but yes I suppose I do propose alternative realities - they are analogies and by their very nature they become quite real as material things once they exist in the world - once they are formed as it were - the drawing is the first visible materialisation of the thought - so they are not 'imaginary' but 'real' for me beyond invention. Analogy enables a slight distance from the personal nerve of things and allows more scope for irreverence and celebration - for conflated thought. Analogy and metaphor enable a  deflection from the nerve, away from the literal or over sentimental - some theatre to frame what Pinter called Shakespeare’s 'wound'.

Good writers use analogy well and avoid being too close or too self-referential with too sticky a subject - it can be like glue and cling too much. I try to avoid sentimentality but I won't shy away from authentic sentiment which is different. The emigre drawings and migrant themed work in aid of unicef referenced universal families and their loss, the post-traumatic stress - how families are separated by loss and estrangement - be they migrant, emigrant, emigre or indigenous ( and this sense of displacement - this estrangement of people in society, children, families - is very close - it is known by many of us quietly).

I was fortunate to work alongside the United Nations and Unicef and I realised then how it gave my own visual practice a socially shared context to inhabit. In other words we are not alone in the emotions we experience and although it is our own knowledge and is unique - it is also shared - and it is known or felt (by others) - even if not talked about openly by us or them - so the work you make is not introspective - not just another navigation of the self - the work can also be communicative and be understood by others, quietly, internally. 

Drawing of course expresses thoughts and feelings too like any voice or instrument - a conduit -  a scientific and visual instrument - a way of mapping feeling and expressing strengths and vulnerabilities. A good quote from Larkin said something akin to this; 

''You must realise I’ve never had ‘ideas’ about poetry. To me it’s always been a personal, almost physical release or solution to a complex pressure of needs—wanting to create, to justify, to praise, to explain, to externalise, depending on the circumstances.”  P.Larkin

The drawings I make are often irreverent or non-compliant toward institutions that restrict people’s freedoms - one of those institutions for me personally goes beyond physical borders and is the general law or restriction of Linear Time ( laughs). So I like to explore this sense of past and present and merge it on one plain.  

''Every man or woman is not only him or herself ; for he or she is also the unique particular, always significant and remarkable point where the phenomena of the world intersect once and for all - and never again.''  
Hermann Hesse 1958

spirit of the beehive 1973 - listening - frequency 

Some of us make our most interesting work when we are on the edge of something awkward - when the heart is up and there is something 'the matter' - an atmosphere going on inside the chest not just the head  - otherwise it can become too calculated, too logical, self-conscious and faux - or what ever you wish to call it. Too deliberate. It becomes designed. I think it's far better to be working laterally, off centre - working by heart, ....half knowing and half in the dark. I don't think you can teach it  - some people are spontaneous and trust their own intuition while others cant. Obviously as a teacher I encourage it in people. It is clearly not an appropriate efficent approach for a Surgeon or Civil Servant but for any Artist or performer who wants to interpret feeling or investigate the edges of things like a good scientist - then yes. 

The mind must also edit the 'whole' in order for us to survive the barrage that our senses endure. The common comparison of the human mind to a computer is misleading. It is far from just a processing device - nor is the heart just a pump. We know very little of the mind, especially the complexity of the brains binding factor and the hippo campus. It is of course mapped out to a point by MRI scans and the microscope but that is a technical biological insight. Neurologists do not know if the mind 'records' everything. We still have no hard proof of where memory is stored in the hippo campus. 

Jorge Luis Borges said ‘Poetry springs from something deeper; beyond intelligence’ – and he’s not wrong. Analysis can kill the very nature of intuition - of what comes naturally or intuitively. The best drawings I have seen by others or that I may have made myself are often spontaneous with no initial harsh design intention - there is thought and context but no serious pre meditation or planning at the outset. This approach is usually a confluence of contexts that 'entangle' and evolve as one works the drawing toward an ending. I wont really seek to mend or adjust it afterwards for example. It just gets saved or it does not. 

 'Emigre - Upon the Greenfield 

The following text was an extract of an interview on drawing for the 'in aid of' unicef displacement exhibition 2015. All 100% exhibition sales raised funds for displaced unaccompanied refugee children in Europe. 

Question: You stated earlier that when you draw ''There is usually a confluence of emotive contexts that entangle and evolve as you work through the drawing''  ... What do you mean by that exactly ? 

mm: Well, at other times, when walking, driving or teaching and not drawing daily - then I am still thinking about that space. Obviously some places and previous encounters we experience in our early lives are very intensive and fix an impression - it may be beauty or loss - they hold you both with the same grip very often - and they can become preserved in the mind. A sort of Cryogenic memory I call it - that I can somehow defrost and re-enter that space. It is a canning of events (canonising even) like a special 'reserve'. I can go to it and take the lid off and observe. I get involved and stir it and try to engage with that sense of place or persons in the present. It is intuitive but it is difficult work. Though rooted in constant themes, these types of drawings are never that pre-planned, so the result is usually a surprise. Like all new things they are an amalgam - the sum of many parts. I dont have an audience in mind when I work. They are a form of exploration. I can't release them as songs on albums - or put them into complex dance routines so ..... they are drawn out.

Dissonance and Consonance in music is crucially important to its depth and emotion - Bartok or Shostakovichs strings or Hendrix. Dissonant 'tonal' notes are much more accepted than abstract dissonance in visual language. The Painter has to get used to this critique very early on in a good Art school - get used to being questioned and analysed on what their images mean and represent ? Artists are expected to offer up intellectual conceptual answers -  and yet with Music it seems less so - Miles Davis improvisational compositions like 'In a Silent Way' or Billy Holiday's vocal 'Scatting' ? It is Pure sound and sound alone - from the heart - Soul - Blues etc - this improvisation and dissonance deeply belongs in musicality - and quite right too. Just as it does in the visual language of Goya, Van Gogh, Khalo, Munch, Rothko, Klee etc.

Making pictures is quite a primitive act if you think about it - a cave like primary experience, simple and direct - hand stick paper etc - and yet it conjures up many complex connections that thread into all sorts of past and future contexts. An Artist envisages these multiple contexts - historical – imagined, factual, poetic, subversive etc – and attempts to capture them. Artists look in and look out - addressing many tough subjects directly and head on - eye to eye. Subjects that other less humanitarian Professions cannot. It is no light task externalising authentic feelings - brave to be - seeking this stuff out - to trap ethereal nuances via any instrument - the vocal chord or a crude lead pencil or a rag - it can seem a crude process. Yet in our 'removed' technologically flawed age - it is very natural and fluid thing - a beautiful thing. 

William Blake or the medieval composer Hildegard Von Bingen's astounding results are a prime example of how the human mind channels the sublime into images and sound - into non textual language. So, yes it is a back to front process in many ways - and yet when this connection works then it is a true act of creative distillation. Once any composition, music, poem, drawing etc is materialised then we have brought actual physical evidence of this subliminal convergence into existence - good or bad - so it is 'spooky' (Einstein) yet also natural ('spooky action at a distance' is of course Einsteins famous theory ).  

There is a sense of connectivity when making work, between the past, the present and somewhere else. This is common for many creative people. For me there are often ghosts 'at table' when I engage and compose these images and texts. Loved ones don’t go away, so the dead are often present and so it can be a complex emotive process to be involved in – evocation, it’s not light material (laughs) however it isn't melancholic - it once was, but not so now - it is much more accepted and understood – more emotionally mature.

the scene of scenes - pure cinema - mortal life and its beauty discussed encapsulated in a few moments of. celluloid - appreciation of the littlest pleasures - a conversation between the dream and the dreamer - one could say we have both of these people in our selves - both guardian and participant - the internal dialogues in the film for both these characters are universally poignant 

e n c h a n t m e n t   &   e n a c t m e n t     

Past Cambridge Curricula; Above ; Bruno Ganz -his' visiting angel  & Çolumbo as the ex-Angel seduced by human sensation in 'Wings of Desire' ... Wim Wenders prima film,

Below; Federico Lorca from Granada ....with vibrancy - ''these dark sounds - the resonance ''

''It is not a matter of ability, but of life, blood (heart), ancient culture, creative actions'' Lorca was assassinated aged 38 , 

below my past seminar  - delivered in 2009

e n c h a n t m e n t   &   e n a c t m e n t 

Seminar / slide notes by mm

Enchantment and enactment - learning - early impression & influence, homage & how we celebrate, adjust or ameliorate nature and nurture via creativity and education : How the mind perceives the material and immaterial. 

Customs - Transient Spaces

#poly kettle curricula Lecture slides / notes 

Euphory & Dysphory - bedfellows in one showcase. How we react  - Seeing & feeling - early impression & influence -enthralment  

Slide above.
The moment a dragon is slain' Punch & Judy Puppet Show Paris 1963. - simulation ; verisimilitude ; witnessing drama (trauma); reaction.Traditions - Troupe 


research - historocity - language - etymology

Cultural capital is gained via creative growth- yes, via books, literature, music, film.etc but mostly by CURIOSITY. Creative Schools act as catalysts for shaping self awareness & personal growth - especially in an era of compartmentalised filtered cultural traffic. 

Smell the Roses ; Vocals from workshop & seminar on phenomenology, synesthesia; psychology of colour; expression & impression.; sense ; experimentation as key - dissonance, consonance - harmony in visual language - working things out. This is the rub ! Balance & The importance for 'slow' celebratory or private time - as much as the intense productive time in a day or week or annum - so, rhythm yes but seasonal times too - the affect of the seasons and climate on the body -  warmth , cold , sun. The moon pulls at not just the tides (read Paglia's nature /nurture texts and read anthropological book 'The Wise Wound' too - on circadian rhythm by Penelope Shuttle) 

And crucially relationships with 1; the self and 2. Others, ... the constant time and fleeting time etc ( see my break down of Hardy's poem below) - I think when we are alone we are always looking - thinking - over thinking - (until engrossed in work or asleep). Yet our time with others - as adults - well, I don't think we look enough - appreciate the moments -  and we should. 

Creativity "as a visual form of soliloquy." ( KK)

 So unless solitude is a must - go be around good people - spend time with family more  -  don't close off.

Look at the twins in background 

University of GreenFields 
Department of Visual & Material Culture 
Beneath the Mills stack 
Ebor 42552

#Poly kettle Lecture slides/ notes: 

Thank heavens for the parallel universe - we are beaming - a fine day on campus. The University of Greenfields 

reflective time - not just tactile time mm video

Creativity as a "visual form of soliloquy." Kathe Kollwitz 

vitreous lustre  

from Latin 'vitreus' - glass - like -  the eye's interior is filled with vitreous, a gel-like substance that helps the eye maintain a round shape. There are millions of fine fibers intertwined within the vitreous that are attached to the surface of the retina, the eye's light-sensitive tissue

The oldest known human fossil site however was in Morocco - at Jebel Erhoud -  see below - Along with two skulls discovered there were also these hand cut tools below ( they are 286,000 years old which blew away the previous data and historocity)

All our geologies - differentiation 

above : commercially available or findable Gems / Gifts - older than the tools above - keep sakes - keep safe - protection - Gemstones - Carnelian - Orange Calcite - Labradorite - Rose Quartz - memento - relic - charm 

vitreous lustre  / tablet / 

Fieldspar all have a vitreous lustre that is often pearly on cleave / cut faces

fieldspar - the most abundant group of minerals in Earth's crust - it has a natural 90% angle of cut /cleave 

vitreous lustre / tablet  / rich memories / 'aunt' flo's Xmas homemade tablet slab - wrapped in baking paper  - not F&M 

F&M gentrified what was once a fine home made recipe 'tablet' from the far north  - they flog it at £80 a slab, maybe more - where as Flo posted her authentic one in a brown paper parcel with a first class stamp - as her annual December gift - from the heart (Flo born circa 1928) 

Listening. -Difference - Differentiation 

Musical Notes - Listening - do we hear music and vibrations differently ? - a sort of audible idiosyncrasy - differentiation, taste ? Audio colour blindness ? - it is interesting - indeed how does a Simian, Cat or Bat hear Debussy or mid 70s Bowie ? Think On - or even a Willow sapling? Yes, Plants do hear and omit sonics. Yet these non human species can never tell us - nor describe it - only HomoSapiens can do that in relation though to their own individual calibrations. 

There is no way to prove a rose smells the same for any person - it wont. Taste is taste - palette is palette - smell - touch, colour, feeling - perception is all subjective - meaning no one rose or apple smells, sounds or tastes the same to one person. There are some Humans who could not see or hear - and investigated perception and sense much much more than we are able. Helen Keller for example.

Read Helen Keller's book - her autobiography. Keller overcame the adversity of being blind and deaf to become one of the 20th century's leading humanitarians 

Tilt to see - to listen - to hear - to sense - 'alive alive O'

notes: alive alive O 

Survivance  - fortitude - Poly -nations 

lark ascending rose - named after Meredith's poem


Biophilia = We ARE nature not just bystanders / onlookers; / above  a beautiful Rose  A tall, airy shrub with clusters of graceful, semi-double flower -  this rose is ;

The one constant with human beings is how different and changeable / reflexive we are. It is a natural state and a mature process - it is how we bond, clash, learn and adapt - evolve - how we gain strength and give strength to others - becoming & constancy  - we flex.''

from link above : Keller's Teacher, Anne Sullivan - then came Polly Thomson

Keller worked with her teacher Anne Sullivan for 49 years, from 1887 until Sullivan's death in 1936. In 1932, Sullivan experienced health problems and lost her eyesight completely. A young woman named Polly Thomson, who had begun working as a secretary for Keller and Sullivan in 1914, became Keller's constant companion upon Sullivan's death. Looking for answers and inspiration, Keller's mother came across a travelogue by Charles Dickens, American Notes, in 1886. here she read of the successful education of another deaf and blind child, Laura Bridgman, and soon dispatched Keller and her father to Baltimore, Maryland to see specialist Dr. J. Julian Chisolm. After examining Keller, Chisolm recommended that she see Alexander Graham Bellthe inventor of the telephone, who was working with deaf children at the time. 

A drawing - a composition - sounds on a flute etc - affinity with biophilic nature - be it walking in forests - or sat by the Sea -  it may all sound very 1967 but its rather older than that .... all ancient cultures believe these act as gateways into transcendental dimensions

n.b : Ebb & Flo ; hand held  - 'to have and to hold' - hand it over - a learning agreement - to pass on - the baton - to hold a stick - cupids arrow - a bow - to bend the note - to bend the arrow from the bow

Reflexive learning seminar / workshop; notes; 

too and fro - too and forth - strength - knowing - from mapping and navigating 

''The one constant with human beings is how different and changeable / reflexive we are. It is a natural state and a mature process - it is how we bond, clash, learn and adapt - evolve - how we gain strength and give strength to others - becoming & constancy  - we flex.'' seminar quote / me 

La Roque in France 30,000 yrs old

Processing - Perception -  Instinct   

In Eastern teachings and now in the West with dialetics (the acceptance and synthesis of opposites) it is said to be hugely significant when a person realises that 'being' is actually a dimension that is sandwiched between ''thinking and awareness" - or even past and future and that two things can be correct and evident at the same time - this is key in creative practice / expression - see June video above where lateral speculative thinking is encouraged.

The state of awareness is considered as a spatial dimension where thoughts are processed and evaluated. Therefore any resulting residue or dissonance from a conflicting 'situation', or dilemma, or unease - is not the 'situation' - it is ones minds reaction to its duality.

Practising cognitive distancing or cognitive separating is known to lessen conflicting emotion. This 'awareness' - seeing, acknowledging and separating matters out - seeing them for what they are - allows a wiser more sanguine state of acceptance to certain matters.

So what of this Personality versus Character thing ?

Personality and Character are different things. 'Personality'– or the traits of humans and animals are determined substantially by genetic makeup and are traits of a more outward appearance - our 'nature', demeanour, vivacity or shyness etc. Where as Character is something more embedded in a persons values .... views, experience, ethics- and this evolves. It involves judgment - the right thing to do or how not to behave - not harming others - not being duplicitous - selfish etc.

When we encounter people we often meld personality and character into one whole first impression of someone. We are automatically tuned to naturally like types of people who's personality we may find uplifting or vice versa if we like introverted or shy people etc. Yet this is not the 'character' of a person, their outlook, loyalties, values etc. 

On the ancient Veld - the birthplace of Humankind - the quality of character and ethics had no value for the primal homo-sapien - it was urgent survival and procreation that mattered - with a life expectancy often just days away on the Veld - there was little need for values or codes on the veld - that all came later. 

Today as a race Humans are still driven by primitive instinct - the birds and bees - an instinct to pollinate the rose, the intoxications of the senses - the bumbling bee. Instinct still drives the machinery on autopilot. Short life expectancy syndrome still prevails especially when young - and it pushes us all forward into eventual constancy through change. 

Veld mentality - the busy bee human, working quickly away thinking that death / the Tiger may just be round the next rock. The young feeling 'untouchable' / the immortal beloved - the primal flaw.

Old hominid saying says  "... don’t worry about out-running the Sabre tooth tiger. Just outrun the person sprinting next to you."

Humans finally evolved to live longer lives - and forged cave communities like at *Jebel Erhoud - more safely away from the Sabre Tooth Tiger and that adrenal mindset of Veld survival - our ancestors began to discover gateways into transcendental dimensionality via creativity and ingenuity - through dreams and thought, drawings - new sounds on a fragile bone lute - tools. 

Our deep affinities and kinship with 'nature' is thus so because we ARE nature - everything is connected to everything else ?!

Our Creativity' acted as the fundamental building blocks to the development of character, life and of our own becoming - toward 'civilisation'

scuplture by david smith1958

*The African Veld is the world's oldest land - inhabited by early humans and their hominid forebears. *The oldest known human fossil site however was in Morocco - at Jebel Erhoud - 

Dialetics means that naturally two opposing things can exist at once - and knowing this (truth). 

1 Everything is connected to everything else; (Einstein said that) 
2 Change is constant and inevitable
3 Opposites can be integrated to form a closer approximating to the truth 

combined duet of the fixed / the steady with the wild / elusive


Preserved - into forever - The living minutes of our lives” lecture Slides’ - Green-Fields seminar set - Ontology ; Drawing ; Print ; Music ; ritual & Performance; Bonds; Super Nature. The Sublime. 

''Ebb & Flow' is a recurrent or rhythmical pattern of coming and going or decline and regrowth. This movement of the tides pulled by the moon. 

She sells 
She shells
On the She 
She Shore 

she shall have Music where ever she goes'' song folk index no; 1777

saddle - hip - keeping time - soaring higher & higher (hardy) bowing higher & higher - ''faster faster alle alle aster'' ... 'sea saw margery daw' was a sawing work song for sawyers using a two person saw - keeping time & rhythm - alignment - duet - duetto - grafting hard shaping laburnum wood or maple or hazel upon the greenfield - in the fir wood - by the fjord - a rhyme & rhythm song on the plateau - fleet of foot - feet of flute - fate - feat - fete - fayre

Preserved - into forever

fleet of foot 

Seminar notes workshops

FOSSIL - SONG - SENSE  - Sea & Saw - saddle - 

The Hip - the seat -  the neck - the spine - the body - the saddle - dimensionality. When we play, ride, physicality - all play - adult play - child play - it is stirring - the tumbling is evident - it is both felt physically and mentally - it permeates - the unseen childlike and the perceptive. Through play we learn - reflexive learning - fleet of foot

Realms. These dimensional experiences are potentially a realm of the elusive much mythologised fourth dimension and fifth. Connectivity 

It dosn't yet need to be explained or quantified - indeed, wouldn't that ruin it ? Yes it would -  over observe and see it dissolve .

Magnetite is found in the human brain 

Transitive ; if an attitude or feeling 'permeates' something, then you can feel or see its influence clearly in every part of that moment or 'thing'. i.e in context 'A sense of mystery or awareness permeates the work / drawing / music / poetry.' 

Memory - primal sensing - trace - impressions given - felt - left - thead - remain - cast  - fossil - sculpture- gift:  Feeling the way - without looking - touching the moment - touchstone - lodestone - magnetite in the brain  - capsule - cell - atom - quark - beauty factory

brain cells recognise external fields - magnetite


fingers - dexterity - to hand - to hold, to conjour  up - atavistic feeling.
The moving touching moment - headiness - dizziness - I felt that 
moved somewhere - some place - some where. Un-forgetting - unlearning. 

The Gene can reminisce recall remember. Don't underestimate it.

 - ''faster faster alle alle aster'' - exhilaration - thrill - habitual muscle memory - keeping thyme 

Feelings 'without looking' (hardy). Early memory of exhilarating dimensional moments in time - transience - where three dimensionality is questioned - headiness - dizziness - the seasaw- upside down on a rope - the slide - being not ones self - role play - fetish - displaced feeling - thresholds. Connections with this transitive realm. Gleening

copper electroplated plaster

votive candles - votive objects - Paris 1920 

FOSSIL SONG SENSE - preservation & loss 

Mary m'Anning - dimensions 

She sells seashells by the seashore," is based on a song written by Terry Sullivan. The song is about a brilliant Palaeontologist - a real seashell seller named Mary m'Anning (1799 – 1847). Mary m'Anning who became known around the world for important scientific discoveries that she made along the Jurassic marine fossil beds in the cliffs along the Devon coast. She was far more than a seashell seller. She has a blue plack in Dorset her home, She collected fossils and contributed important information about prehistoric life to the international scientific community Duchamp made objects for future Marys to ponder - if the museums are ever submerged 900 yrs from now 

Being and Becoming.’ Mary's Education was experiential too - and thus the development of fascination, character physicality in the world + emotion ....not just systematic instruction, theory or Process - she was fleet of foot - no fools gold for mary

Importantly Mary was by all accounts a 'dissenter' and did not fully participate in the male scientific community of 19th-century Britain, who were mostly Anglican men.

She struggled financially for much of her life. Her family was poor, and her father, a cabinet maker, died when she was eleven.

Her hardship drove her walks and the discovery of her own creative sciences and her self 

The High High North 'Nessie' extract from longer poem 

We ride the tail
But know not the head
Not even the spine
Of that upon which
We travel.   

above ; Mary in 2020 in her element - role play - and her huge beastie !

Life - source - The neck - the object - the handle - irony - play - fate - concept - Darwin - xx xy depository - sting - dart - seed - dimension

nessy - legend - real - legend - real - the oneiric - a trace - a dream 

Mary (m)Anning  & marcel duchamp 

Drawing by Mary 

Her coastal habitat as escape
(Ruskin / Proust / Bachelard)

As an outsider and dissenter - her natural history unlocked. Not confined. Re-wilded emotional spaces - evolving curiosity and fascination  - she handled things - extra dimensional expertise for the outsider and dissenter  - unlocked. Not confined.

seminar notes / Introductions to series of important pertinent people / their work : And the psychology, activity, polarity, dualities that drove them. 


screen grab of my seminar notes 

''Duchamp made objects for future Marys to ponder - if the museums are ever submerged 900 yrs from now'' mm 

Duchamp made mysterious satirical art & He was a sensorialist - the quality of having sensation - not an aesthete - (image /imago / visage)

Life - source - The neck - the object - the handle - irony -play - concept - Darwin - xx xy depository - sting - dart - life-force - synergy - the spine - the hip - the gait - learning 

above; Graves : 

A drawing - a composition - sounds on a bone flute etc - affinity /biophilia / nature - walking in forests - or sat by the Sea -  it may all sound very 1967 but its rather older than that .... all ancient cultures and now modern science show these experiences can act as gateways into transcendental dimensionality, 

Dialetics too involves several assumptions about the nature of reality: 1) everything is connected to everything else ( Einstein); 2) change is constant and inevitable; and 3) opposites can be integrated to form a closer reality of the truth (which is always evolving)

In 1964, talking with Calvin Tomkins, Marcel Duchamp said: 
All this talk about the fourth dimension was around 1900, and probably before that. But it came to the ears of artists around 1910. What I understood of it at that time was that the three dimensions can be only the beginning of a fourth, fifth, and sixth dimension, if you know how to get there. But when I thought about how the fourth dimension is supposed to be time, then I began to think that I’m not at all in accord with this. It’s a very convenient way of saying that time is the fourth dimension, so we have the three dimensions of space and one of time. But in one dimension, a line, there is also time. I also don’t think that Einstein in fact calls it a fourth dimension. He calls it a fourth coordinate. So my contention is that the fourth dimension is not the temporal one. Meaning that you can consider objects having four dimensions. But what sense have we got to feel it? Because with our eyes we only see two dimensions. We have three dimensions with the sense of touch. So, I thought that the only sense we have that could help us get a physical notion of a four-dimensional object would be touch again. Because to understand something in four dimensions, conceptually speaking, would amount to seeing around an object without having to move: to feel around it. For example, I noticed that when I hold a knife, a small knife, I get a feeling from all sides at once. And this is as close as it can be to a fourth-dimensional feeling. Of course from there I went on to the physical act of love, which is also a feeling all around, either as a woman or as a man. Both have fourth-dimensional feelings. This is why love has been so respected.

.... duchamps- objects - were never intended for viewing but intimate gifts - dimensional instruments - charms - warmths 

DW Winnicott - read this book for your self and for your understanding of family friends and of others - his subjects are strange realities but written so easily - recommended by me and Alain De Botton 

Slide: Dr Winnicott cover for Play & Realty book

Alain De Botton wrote of Dr Winnicott - He was the greatest British psychoanalyst who ever lived. He writes beautifully and simply about the problems of everyday life - and is the perfect thing to read if you want to understand yourself and other people better." 
What are the origins of creativity and how can we develop it - whether within ourselves or in others? Not only does Playing and Reality address these questions, it also tackles many more that surround the fundamental issue of the individual self and its relationship with the outside world. In this landmark book of twentieth-century psychology, Winnicott shows the reader how, through the attentive nurturing of creativity from the earliest years, every individual has the opportunity to enjoy a rich and rewarding cultural life. Today, as the 'hothousing' and testing of children begins at an ever-younger age, Winnicott's classic text is a more urgent and topical read than ever before.

These narrative slides by me accompanied seminar lectures and are small samples of 60 minute lectures / chats.

library - recommended 

extract from GIFT 


Cover by Cranach the Elder 

greenfield / ebor mill stack at the bottom - snod hill 

Trees – Apples -  Grapes - on the vine -  the term Terroir (not terror) is a vineyard term ‘’Terroir’’ – Your terrain, the seedbed – the soil in which the wine is flavoured - the environment one is grown in –  what we absorb and soak up – our phenomenological habitat. This is a soup of idiosyncratic and sensual characteristics from the felt and physical surroundings that create us - so say by the age of 20 you should have a store. This store is formed from both nature and nurture and forms who you are. Personality and Character are classed as two different things - but essentially any artist or person has an autobiographical sense to draw narratives and meaning from . So you have your own mythology. The german language has a name for it - Künstlerroman.

Sabina Spielrein circa 1908. Her work on individuation.
Individuation being the process or journey through education and self-realization - to the development of individuality. Your own self. Knowing & becoming. The ongoing process - essential to the formation of authentic identity - especially if that identity has been slowed by early primary events

Sabina Spielrein was Brilliant - years ahead was she  - her work informed and advanced Freud & Jungs later work. ( Freuds 'Beyond the pleasure principle' ) and in breaking Carl Jung's heart she led him to his incredibly personal manuscript called 'Liber Novus' The Red Book. Which only saw the light of day recently in 2009. Drawings paintings texts. Sabrina Was the first expert in this new emerging field to have informed her teachings & methodology from her own experiential knowledge of her childhood and difficult youthful experiences - to go on, qualify and map out the study of childhood & the evolving adult mind. Her work is still under appreciated.This authentic transparency and achievement had not been achieved before. Mid brilliant career she lost her life in the holocaust. Her portrayal in the film 'A Dangerous Method' by Keira Knightley is somewhat accurate but doesn't do her importance justice. It Seems more a vehicle for Jung & Freud played well by Viggo Mortensen & Michael Fassbender. 

*Jung's Red book is epic in his text and his illuminated images - but the epic inner message is simply 'value your inner life.

Sabinas important work helped lead to the modern developments / understanding the object relation / child whole object constancy breakthrough.


'A Dangerous Method' Sabrina is played by Keira Knightley- and is somewhat accurate as a film but doesn't do her importance justice. It Seems more a vehicle for Jung & Freud played well by Viggo Mortensen & Michael Fassbender. 

Every sensitive person carries inside himself old cities enclosed by ancient walls.” RW

'Looking at Pictures' 

                                                                      borrow or buy the book - it's been on every wise Arts reading list from Kensington Gore  to Chelsea to Cambridge, to Glasgow - to Rome

'In A Forest' by Diaz - read story below by Walser

Here in the short text below Robert Walser weaves an allegory - he is not inciting abandonment of your child. Importantly all authorship has a historical context - its own imaginary space - this is what he exploits - he is writing in 1919 about a liminal imaginary wooded space in 1868. Notice how the author's protagonist unusually breaks the 4th wall half way down the prose. This is called 'metafiction' (remember this is 1919)

In my mind the fictional child in this scene is the author himself. 
The best creative achievements - or the truest - are often narratives that expand from within ourselves, and often for the benefit of others.

Born in Switzerland in 1878,  his contemporary admirers included Franz Kafka, Hermann Hesse, Robert and Walter Benjamin. Today he is acknowledged as one of the most important and original literary voices of the twentieth century.


In A Forest

'In a forest' painted by Diaz, a little mother and her son stood still. They were now a good hour from the village. Gnarled trunks spoke a primeval tongue. The mother said to her child: “In my opinion, you shouldn’t cling to my apron strings like that. As if I were here only for you. Benighted creature, what could you be thinking? You’re just a small child, yet want to make grownups dependent on you. How ill-considered. A certain amount of thinking must enter your slumbering head, and to make that happen, I shall now leave you here, alone. Stop clutching at me with those little hands this instant, you uncouth, importunate thing! I have every reason to be angry with you – and I believe I am. It’s time you were told the unadorned truth, otherwise you’ll stay a helpless child all your life, forever reliant on your mother. 

To teach you what it means to love me, you must be left to your own resources, you’ll have to seek out strangers and serve them, hearing nothing but harsh words from them for a year, two years, perhaps longer. Then you’ll know what I was to you. But always at your side, I am unknown to you. That’s right, child, you make no effort at all, you don’t even know what effort is, let alone tenderness, you uncompassionate creature. Always having me at your side makes you mentally indolent. Not for a minute do you stop to think – that’s what indolence is. You must go to work, my child, you’ll manage it if you want to – and you’ll have no choice but to want to. 

I swear to you, as truthfully as I am standing here with you in this forest painted by Diaz, you must earn your livelihood with bitter toil so that you will not go to ruin inwardly. Many children grow coarse when they are coddled, because they never learn to be thoughtful, thankful. Later, they all turn into ladies and gentlemen who are beautiful and elegant on the outside but self-absorbed nonetheless. To save you from becoming cruel and succumbing to foolishnesses, I am treating you roughly, because overly solicitous treatment produces people free from conscience and care.”

As the child heard these words, it opened its eyes wide in terror, trembling, and a tremor passed through the very leaves of Diaz’s forest, but the mighty trunks stood firm. 
The fallen leaves upon the forest floor murmured: “What has been written in this brief essay appears to be quite simple, but there are times when everything simple and readily comprehensible recedes from human understanding and only can be grasped with great effort.” That’s what the leaves murmured. The mother was gone. The child stood there alone. Before this child stood the task of finding its way in the world, which is also a forest, of learning to hold itself in the right humility and to drive out all smug complacency and self entitlement from its own person, so that it might be ready for others. 

full text by R.Walser

*notes; peripatetic - try to be less so - settle in a bit - smell roses you have made 

These excerpts from Looking at Pictures are published by permissions of Christine Burgin and New Directions Publishing. Copyright © Suhrkamp Verlag Zurich 1985. License edition by permission of the owner of rights, Carl-Seelig-Stiftung, Zurich. “Diaz’s Forest” translation copyright © 2015 by Susan Bernofsky. 

desert islands - celebration - comfort - distance 

Listen here to rare recording BBC archive of Desert Island discs  - the guest is not Robinson Crusoe but Philip Larkin, Poet - its insightful - he is almost avuncular here.

Qualia  &  Distance / the spaces between   


The question is  ...if he, the human being, is not around to witness phenomena does the tide still come in and wet the white sand of the island ? Do the Parrot and dog still smell the salt in the sea breeze ? 
Does the coconut falling from the palm tree make a sound as it hits the sand IF Man is not present to hear the 'noise' / feel the vibration of the impact ? 

Nihilism is a much misinterpreted theoretical philosophy but in essence it does indeed condemn & oppose the meaningful aspects of life and existence. It is the ultimate party pooper. Incidentally Kierkegaard Nietzsche, Camus and Satre were not nihilists & opposed it vocally- all were mindful and sought meaning.

Existential Nihilism argues that life is ‘without’ any meaning or value. The 7 Seas do not exist unless we are there to observe them or project our lens onto them : Yet to think Man is the only consciousness or locus presents as very hopeless. An intellectual Patriarchal Anthropocentrism. What of the qualia felt by the dreaming Wolf or tiger etc. It all makes for good conversation. As an idea it is the polar opposite philosophy to B
uddhism or James Lovelock or Helen Keller's deaf & blind insight. 

Magic exists in the world whether we are present or not to sense or measure it. Is Qualia present without our antenna ? (See Frank Jackson "knowledge argument) Moral nihilists assert that ethics don't exist. Hence are they Amoral ? from Latin *Nihill (nothing) Nihilism becomes defensive disenchantment. A cognitive defeatism. 

This can change in a person and not through epiphany but via life experience perspective paternity humility etc . For example in the novel Fathers & Sons by Ivan Turgenev the Protagonist and Nihilistic leader Bazarov discovers that his strong nihilistic views are challenged upon his own falling in love. He sees the world around him differently. 

He realises his chemistry and heart has been altered - he experiences new appreciation where once he felt a void. See Mr Rochester or Scrooges awakening & paradigm shift. *cultivate an intuitive appreciation of things beyond Freud’s hedonistic THE PLEASURE PRINCIPLE ‘Conjuring’ other things up, acknowledging and using magical thinking in its various forms & observing one’s own phenomenology. Sharing it with a significant other(s) or going solo. I think like Larkin, that at the bottom of all art lies the impulse to preserve. 

film still above; 'all that heaven allows' directed by master douglas sirk - a societal film about difference and inner life not materialism. The book 'Walden' by Thoreau is a central theme too. ( see older posts for more info and imagery from this wonderful film - old seminar notes )

Repost below from 2015 interview on value, bonding and creative practice

Parallel Sensibilities

Authorship helps navigate away from potential senses of absence or disenchantment, away from ones own anthropocentrism. It placates the illusions and negativity that we can feel from status anxiety etc. Creative Practice can steer us away from 'the Other' toward levels of contentment through reflexive engagement - observing what is occurring -  learning - remaking and re-owning things presently - in the present tense. 

Preserving these observations ‘seen’ or perceptions ‘felt’ in a drawn act - as an expression of visual or sonic language or text etc - is an entanglement of sensory observations from the present and of the past - depicted and preserved into one capsule – and therefore the work may become an expression of immediate experience - and even if the work has a natural involvement with the historical past - the work is paradoxically born out of knowledge and feeling gained in the present - therefore it is a recording of that present moments perceptions and not an echo. As a result the work when successful helps define a more acceptable personal state  - a new paradigm - the friendship or 'fellowship' that Orwell talked about - important today amidst the plethora of simulated 21 century commercial and social media stimulus that is both heterogeneous and conflicting.' The value of living well - alive alive oh.

Alive, alive, oh

Crying "cockles and mussels, alive, alive, oh"

conversation between the left hand side brain and right hand side of the brain - North London - listening to Glass - music in 12 parts - part one.

Astonishment  - curiosity  - 'how we come across things'

seduced / coming across incredulity 

Anti 'Glib'- - means absorb matters - listen - look - read up - share

Glib means readily fluent, yet thoughtlessly, superficially, or insincerely. - a glib talker; glib answers. A Glib listener. Don't be glib.

Life Workshops 2018 - 19 -20 polykettle - slides and orals Adult #polykettle

A  Children's book on Bills life and work

From the Inside Flap:

Growing up as an enslaved boy on an Alabama cotton farm, Bill Traylor worked all day in the hot fields. When slavery ended, Bill's family stayed on the farm as sharecroppers. There Bill grew to manhood, raised his own family, and cared for the land and his animals. 

By the time he was eighty-one, Bill was all alone on his farm. He moved to Montgomery, the capital of Alabama. Lonely and poor, he wandered the busy downtown streets. But deep within himself Bill had a reservoir of memories of working and living on the land, and soon those memories blossomed into pictures. Bill began to draw people, places, and creatures from his earlier life, as well as scenes of the city around him. Today Bill Traylor is considered to be one of the most important self-taught American folk artists. 

Winner of Lee & Low's New Voices Award Honor, It Jes' Happened is a lively tribute to a man who has enriched the world with more than twelve hundred warm, energetic, and often humorous pictures.

Master Workshop Lectures : 
Green Fields 
Dept of Visual & Material Cultural

Adult #polykettle

Meta drawing
Drawing content : curriculum: 
Dissonance and disruption.

see; Jung’s red book / Bill Traylor & Max Ernst slides here. 

Introvert ? - extrovert ?

Do set up a Big Draw event locally then go to their www - it’s a very good thing to initiate or be involved with 👍 

Mack what is meta drawing ? 
Meta (from the Greek meaning beyond - more comprehensive or transcending the surface - exploring beyond technique or process - digging through the surface top soil towards meaning, feeling and motive.


the moment in and out of time - eliot

Such Campus 
University of GreenFields 
Department of Visual & Material Culture 
Beneath the Mills stack 
Ebor 42552

Sula Wolff - loners - the life path of unusual / gifted children 

The brilliance of Sula Wolff
''Closely and carefully argued. This book is eminently readable and holds the reader's interest''
(Hans Steiner in 'The Lancet' )
(extract below from her full obituary here  https://www.google.com/amp/s/www.independent.co.uk/news/obituaries/sula-wolff-child-psychiatrist-who-made-pioneering-advances-in-her-field-1813213.html%3famp

Sula Wolff was precise in her thinking and did not let sloppy statements pass without questioning. Her writing was exceptionally clear, spare and elegant. In particular, in 1969 she published Children Under Stress: Understanding the Emotionally Disturbed Child, an account aimed at all professionals concerned with children, as well as at the general public. This book was translated into all major and several minor languages and resulted in numerous invitations to lecture abroad. She played an active part in national meetings, where I met her as a colleague and later as a friend. She and Henry, who was appointed professor of psychiatry at the University of Edinburgh, became a well-known couple in the city. Together they created a home in Blacket Place that housed an amazing art collection. From the time they arrived in Edinburgh in 1962 they collected modern Scottish paintings, including many by Joan Eardley. Soon their collection spread to include French impressionists and American abstract art, including paintings by Frank Stella and Hans Hofmann.

Sula Wolff - two books

Loners - the life path of unusual / gifted children 

'Children under stress'

University Campus Curricular - module1777 : 
Desire paths (cutting through the long grass) 

dedicated to Moria Hutchison Soroptimist ; Headteacher : Educator ; 

L I B R A R Y - film & books

This Contemporary book 'Spectrum girls survival guide' has helped many learners 
The Spectrums Girls Survival Guide- research the author pictured above. 

Also order new issue of TRAP DOOR - below - Fluid Gender xx xy 

Bernadine Evaristo 2019

Winner of the 2019 Booker Prize. This is Britain as you've never read it. This is Britain as it has never been told. From Newcastle to Cornwall, from the birth of the twentieth century to the teens of the twenty-first, Girl Woman Other follows a cast of twelve characters on their personal journeys through this country and the last hundred years. They're each looking for something - a shared past, an unexpected future, a place to call home, somewhere to fit in, a lover, a missed mother, a lost father, even just a touch of hope . . . 'Masterful . . . A choral love song to black womanhood in modern Great Britain' Elle 'Exceptional. Ambitious, flowing and all-encompassing, an offbeat narrative that'll leave your mind in an invigorated whirl... [It] unites poetry, social history, women's voices and beyond. You have to order it right now' Stylist 'Bernardine Evaristo

tumbled and conflated  astride the engines into forever 

Adventure Time Historicity & the Chronotope 

Restrictions of 'linear time 'frustrate some of us - I think about it a lot - and always have. So music is a saviour / muse in this respect, of achieving NON linear time. Creative acts of remembering the future - remember ?

Adventure Time in greek myth. Chronotopes, where changing aspects of time and space are achieved. The ancient Greek story has “adventure time” for hero and heroine where their own duetto developments do not impact upon other characters; This space in which their adventures happens, is effectively theirs alone. 

Actual real people in social history - the essence and real quality of being part of histories tumbled conflated immersive engine -  as opposed to being a statistic, myth, legend, reject, victim or fiction.

All the people (‘’where do they all come from'' ( e. rigby ) 

Sometimes you just have to go back up stream and retrieve them
.... reanimate them - the lost. 

Expanding forgetting remembering ; 

Time, The Universe is expanding and Voyager is still travelling through time and interstellar space carrying Bach, Stravinsky and Blind Willie Johnson to infinity and beyond ! Tumbled immersive engines  - took them all into forever.

Having operated for 42 years the spacecraft still communicates with Earth, receives routine commands and transmits data to humans  (visit & track here https://voyager.jpl.nasa.gov/mission/status/#where_are_they_now

Both Voyager 1 and Voyager 2 have reached Interstellar space - each continue their unique journey through the Universe. In the NASA  app, you can see the real spacecraft trajectories of the Voyagers, which are updated every five minutes.

the combined duet of the fixed / the steady with the wild / elusive

Summer reference Film. 'Walk the Line' the life of June (Carter) pictured here and her pal Mr Cash - one of the best historical biopics - good if 21 and unfamiliar with this 20th century story.

my seminar notes

In Anthropology 'anamnesis' is a mythical fireside philosophical discussion with PLATO - that humans possessed ancestral knowledge from our past innings - that learning consists of rediscovering previous lost ancient knowledge. It is an interesting precursor to reflexive learning and of forgetting. A clean sheet and then a becoming again - a recovering of pre-requisite data through a memory recovering and promptings - so in essence ones life experience is actually a 'palimpsest'. A layering. An experience on top of a faded experience. I rarely get de ja vu now - it does fade as you age. The term has since become a medical term for a patients recollections. ptsd etc too. So now think of healing /recovery and indeed learning in this new context when you write, interpret or compose. Learning or remembering. 

adventure time - inside and under a cloud  
Seminar notes - 2019 workshop notes 

Drawing from the life - drawing your life - drawing life ?

Learning & Remembering - Polykettle James Joyce exercise

A warm reminder of what you did in workshops: OR what you missed as I walked about talking and asking you - as you buried yourself into some excellent drawings - half listening to me (which was the plan) and my prompts and the content of some of those classes merged with your more intuitive modes - all enabling some excellent drawings.

Reflexive Learning - reflective knowledge. A circular relationships with ones own experience. Cause and effect. Lesson learning is embedded in human beliefs - games - play - a circle game - growth but with snakes & ladders,  

See Modernism - Joyce in character : Ulysses in 1917.

My youth. Only once it
comes. Or hers. Take the train there tomorrow. No. Returning not the
same. Like kids your second visit to a house. The new I want. 
Nothing new under the sun.

As an exercise flip the meaning & context above by JJ to this.

Her Wisdom - it will come. ~ Or hiz.
Take a train to it tonight ? ~ No. 
Doesn't work like that.
knowledge ? Youth wants.
No fast track.

Nothings new under the Moon
All of its been said, sang, done.
Yet all of it - all of that 
Is for herz or hiz to come.

The prose by Joyce (and my small but important alteration of context basically means this); 

That Human life and its trials and beautitudes are constant and as Chaucer and Shakespeare shows us - does not change like fashion. Romans, Elizabethans, Greeks and Georgians had the same loves and woes as we ..... loss or love at each stage of life is unaltered by time, sexual preference. It transcends eras.

Ones youth is driven by a set of primal drivers that are common across any time - and so the smiling lamenting of youth by a dying Viking Octogenarian off the Beaches of Lindisfarne in 762 will still be exactly the same philosophy and emotion as in the year 2095 by a silver suited future utopian Octogenarian .... as then - as is now. 

short video on palimpsest as metaphor / non recorded time / space - ( video removed) I'll reload it another time.

'This conflation of the previous and the current are what fuels propulsion'

Lecture notes / Slides:

1: The Yellow Book & Fin de siècle (cover by Aubrey Beardsley) as discussed in seminar for it’s subversive cultural influence - yellow books published London 1894 to 1897 (Munch, Gauguin and Van Gogh pioneered new expressionist drawing during this same narrow window but earlier in 1888 ) German Expressionism came later in 1905.
2: Sight & Sound 2011 Film ‘The Deep Blue Sea’ Depicts post war 1950 social nuances so well ....directed by Terence Davies and starring Rachel Weisz who is outstanding as Hester Collier - her performance is both urgent and vulnerable all at once. 

Vacation reading

Recommended / Books & Film  
seminar slides 

Read this article written by Rebecca Bray
For the Learning Department © Royal Academy of Arts

Duchamp and Dalí both insisted on the importance of the individual, a concept they each explored in their work, primarily through consciously developed and performed identities: Dalí as a dandyish, extravagant showman and prolific artist; Duchamp as an ironic, solitary figure who by the 1930s many thought had relinquished art-making entirely. Although their public personas differed greatly, the two artists are united in their need to actively construct for themselves a unique identity.
Cat. 31 At first glance, the person in this photograph appears to be a fashionable woman of the 1920s. Wearing a low-set feathered hat and several necklaces, her gaze is direct, cool and questioning. At the time, her appearance would have been recognisable as a ‘femme savante’, an educated, intellectual, artistically literate woman. She is, however, none other than Marcel Duchamp. This 1921 photograph demonstrates his visual, even flamboyant, exploration of assuming an alter ego, Rrose Sélavy. This character was not a one-off occurrence, but an identity that Duchamp assumed many times during his career. He apparently signed or co-signed works ‘by Duchamp and Rrose Sélavy’ and even appeared (in a photograph taken in the same costume) as the face of an imaginary fragrance, Belle Haleine, Eau de Voilette (Beautiful Breath, Veil Water).
Key to understanding the layered significance of Duchamp/Rrose is the name. Rather than a misspelling that stuck, Rrose Sélavy is a deliberate pun, intended to prompt wider connotations when looking at anything created of or by her. Exactly what Duchamp meant by the pun is somewhat less clear. The most common interpretation is that it sounds like Eros, c’est la vie (Eros, that’s the life. Eros is the Greek god of erotic love); but it has also been interpreted to mean arroser la vie (make a toast to life). Perhaps its ambiguity is one of the reasons why Duchamp made this pun, so that viewers would understand it differently based on their own associations and allowing for slippage of meaning. Puns appear many times throughout Duchamp’s artworks and notes; they became an important element in his artistic identity, a way to encourage certain readings of works that otherwise may seem impenetrable. Often deciphering these puns relied on understanding an in-joke, or on being part of the specific circle of friends and artists known to Duchamp – to non-French speakers, for example, the name Rrose Sélavy is not an obvious pun. Duchamp began to use puns as a way to promote his elusive persona, while also helping those ‘in the know’ to interpret his works.
Duchamp’s exploration of a female identity is particularly relevant when considered alongside today’s discourse surrounding gender. Duchamp’s decision to ‘change sex’ at will was a radically unusual one for the period, suggesting he believed gender and identity to be a fluid concept, an idea which has only recently gained mainstream acceptance. However, it is important to approach Rrose Sélavy within the context of the period in which the persona was created. The status of women in the art circles Duchamp frequented would have been limited, with women often seen as being muses for male artists rather than recognised as artists in their own right. Duchamp would deliberately ‘put on’ the persona of Rrose Sélavy for the creation of artwork, rather than as a part of his lifestyle, or to make a political or feminist statement. With even her name acting as a pun, Rrose Sélavy seems to be less a fully formed person than a personification of Duchamp’s ideas about playing with identity.

*Inclusivity / notes - differentiation

If we read the original ethos behind the Greek 'Epicurian' texts and the 'Stoic' texts ( Seneca, Marcus Aurelius etc ), there is a difference to the modern cliche of both 

1; The rampant Epicurian libertine hedonist - well this is not the case in its original philosophy - it is more akin to a wanderer and relaxed seeker. 

2. TheStoic. Neither does the cliche of the emotionally detached cold stoic fit 

There is a good focus in modern 'stoics' on nurturing pleasure from the senses through the arts - through wellbeing, a focus on benevolence as opposed to self-preoccupation and on the development of ethical awareness - putting back in - social duty - care for others. 

However, the rub here is that the quality of independence and self preoccupation is often required if you are a young evolving curious artist of a personality type inclined for resistance. This resistance is how interesting artists are formed - rebellious - stubborn etc
This hardship and poverty - quirk, deprivations and resulting resilience - is what cultivates sensitivity or defiance, it is a reaction to the familial, the safe and secure. 

Control is not a virtue - questioning and freedom is. 

This is not to say that a Stoic approach cannot support a less motivated learner - but it cannot be assumed that it is an approach that is always welcomed. Many young people are are often inherently rebellious of course - a dislike of control, routine and parental mithering - it is a longer road but their own track on the outside - often very self informed - well read, observant, intuitive.  It is certainly a much greyer shade for us all than the Greek texts. 
It is so important to recognise Solitude and Collectivism in learners and embrace both

Myers Briggs' their methodology - has had its critics but it was one of the first methodologies to recognise difference and diversity in persons - and try to educate workplaces about understanding / managing mixed groups.

De Botton On Winnicot

Winnicott also came up with the idea of the “good enough mother”. Other psychoanalysts often demanded that the mother be everything, or else the child would be harmed. But Winnicott allowed a greater amount of error for both the mother and father. For anyone who has a family of their own it’s a nice deprecatory starting point of the old critical values.
This collection brings together Winnicott’s most important works about understanding the minds of children, and includes essays such as “Concept of a Healthy Individual”, the “Value of Depression” and “Delinquency as a Sign of Hope.” These sound very intriguing, and indeed controversial, even by today’s standards – would you agree?
Definitely. A lot of his writing involved picking up the broken pieces after the Second World War, when children had endured complicated family arrangements – whether the father was away, or killed, or the children sent to the countryside. He found a ready audience in his ideas about imperfection, and about accepting imperfection while still trying to get better.
Winnicott is praised as being one of the most creative and accessible of all psychoanalysts. Your own work has been described as a “philosophy of everyday life”, and I wondered whether his approach inspired yours?
When I think about the essayists that I like, I realise I have a very low tolerance for complicated writing. There is almost nothing in the humanities that can’t be expressed simply, even if it’s a complicated idea. It’s not rocket science, so the onus is on the writer to provide a charming reading experience.
Why did you choose his collection over better known psychoanalysts, such as Sigmund or Anna Freud?
Partly for literary reasons – I like the way he writes and I like his personality. He is the sort of person I would like to be friends with, which I don’t feel about either Anna or Sigmund Freud. While a lot of what he says is Freudian, I prefer the nuances and the ordinariness that he holds on to while discussing pretty weird stuff.

Solice & Seeking ; both  

'Toward the forest’ 1897 Woodcut ; printed in deep blue, turquoise green, yellow and beige, Printer Woll's second variation (of three), signed in pencil.

The Sick Child 

Seminar notes:

Western Painting at this point was predominantly about religion, figurative accuracy, wealth and status. Munch, Vincent & Gauguin were somewhat repelled by this. They recognised the spirit of early Italian painters like Sassetta, Delacroix too, they felt kinship with William Blake, Durer and Goya. 

'The Sick Child' see above: 

Munch was the first Artist in Western Visual Art to agitate the surface of his paintings and prints to emote his own existential autobiographical feelings - agitation or poetics that explicitly told his own personal narratives - no one had knowingly explored and visualised this psychological authorship before in such depth - and as a means of self expression & psychic amelioration - not in in paint anyway ... not since ritualistic prehistoric Cave Painting. 
(Vincent did this too, a year or so later in 88/9 - but Munch’s painting, of his own sister, ‘The Sick Child’ 1885 is the first 'known' or recognised use of this abstract tactile expressionism in the WEST ....where the sickness and emotion (of painter & sitter conflated in paint ) becomes the portraits real authentic motive and subject.

It depicts the gravitas and diseased solemnity of the sitters state - her mortality and connectivity / also we feel the loss of the painter. It connotes via his deliberate palette knife cuts and abstraction - a sense of demise using primitive inscribed markings instead of the norm - tasteful traditional symbolism - a limp vase of flowers etc.

He painted his lost sister as a memory of the event - her loss witnessed 1877 yet he painted it in 1885.
after processing matters. Survivors guilt and ptsd fuelled this work. It is very akin in actual fact to cutting / self harm / flagellation. His private painting was his way of releasing, processing and placating his difficult emotions owning these himself without involving another, a form of ‘anonism’ and of Self inventory. William Blake used religious allegory to show his vision yet Munch and Van Gogh succeeded in tapping personal narratives that represent universal themes. Works such as The Sick Child, 'Wheat Field with Reaper' and 'Starry Night over the Rhône' evidence a kinship between the artists on a deeper fundamental level.

Painted 1899 : Dance By the shore by Edvard Munch one of my favourite paintings - special - the geology - shapes of it - the colour - the vibrancy of mood - the view from his summer house - the great Edvard palette / beauty / myth


''At one - the wind rose - and with it the noise of the black poplars'' PL

poem 2006 by mm about PL

seminar notes: 

The ineffable parallel life ; Costume - troupes - roots and .....”the living minutes of our lives” Ontology - warmth - humour - duende too 

The Mari Lwyd

Drawing seminar / workshop 

The importance of your roots & inclusivity / John Merrick & Mari Lwyd & forms of humour, humility and beauty 
watch the welsh voice reverberate https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6ptel9C3Zhg

curiosity - fascination - enthrallment 

The film below is an UN-sentimental film - it works    

the non retinal is key

The Good 

archival #polykettle 2019/20

Please research this man -  and then watch this short but fabulous 
1 minute footage from prime TV - link here  


 It is an extraordinarily warm thing - to see - the humility.

Please visit the free Imperial war museum galleries In Lambeth at least once a year to never forget.

The humility of this man was incredible - Nicholas, you are missed appreciated and never forgotten.  He lived to 106 

Obit here 

A profile here of the superb work being done by Rosie on her blog and her youtube educational films. 

As an educator myself working in a pastoral capacity with young people and mature students for many many years - I have always felt that everyone involved in shaping society has to show more pro active responsibility in beating down the taboos, prejudice and discrimination around emotional irregularity in sensitive creative young people - this needs more attention within all our many institutions and the wider community. 

More part time routes need to be set up for all degree programmes - as part time engagement allows for more inclusivity for neurodiverse learners and more manageability of their studies alongside work life balance, their families and their own wellbeing.
Such learners are very highly committed and yet do benefit from more space to evolve their schedules and studies.

20 yrs ago I set up a part time route for my own degree learners - one of the very first such widening participation routes at degree level in the UK and it worked superbly - enabling a much more attractive pathway - on a 'pay and go' method. A slower - deeper journey of individual modules, instead of flying through120 credits per academic year. 

A ' qualification' is judged on its quality and its teachers not its location or  fees, prestige / city or institute. Employers know this but I don't think prospective learners realise this.

*She clearly states that this is not medical advise - She is not a trained doctor - she is a teacher - but her blog and videos are a sharing for others of her real experiences and success with DBT for her own emotional irregularity - her bpd  

Rosies video above is on identifying emotions - her short films, writing and honesty have really helped many learners and their families - to understand and support what are common emotions in many highly tuned creative and sensitive learners. 

- helping students to identify & relate with her videos and not feel isolated in times of worry and anxiety.

Then see this very honest one below from 2017 -  she has been resilient and inspirational for many young people over the last few years of her admirable journey 

Please do go here for just a few seconds too and support her with £3.00 on KO-FI and buy her a coffee 

here are extracts from one of the excellent supportive books reviewed 

there is more on resilience -  and more of rosies clips near the very bottom of this page 

Supporting notes and links for learners


Lost notes / updated for covid19 support 2020

Helpful links : 

If you feel you may be affected by any of the issues referenced by some of the books on this page
There is no substitute for the advice of professionals in relation to mental health or physical health.
If you, your child, your partner or anyone else you love is struggling in any way, please seek out and encourage them to seek professional support.

This site is very good for links 
Karen is a regular contributor to Parenting Magazine in New Zealand. She can often be heard on Australian radio


https://www.heysigmund.com/building-resilience-children/ and above is text by 
Karen Young is a regular contributor to Parenting Magazine in New Zealand. She can often be heard on Australian radio

Karen, like many of us in Educational / Caring Professions has deep thanks to Winnicot

"Having work be so dominant in my life right now feels helpful, but I am worried I will burn out."
NHS Respiratory physiotherapist Andrea blogs about how she is trying to look after herself while looking after coronavirus patients.
excellent article here for Key Workers at www MIND

Dialectics & Dr Martha Linehan


'“I was in hell,” she said. “And I made a vow: when I get out, I’m going to come back and get others out of here.”''   ML

“Dialetics” is a complex concept that has its roots in philosophy and science….[It] involves several assumptions about the nature of reality: 1) everything is connected to everything else; 2) change is constant and inevitable; and 3) opposites can be integrated to form a closer approximating to the truth (which is always evolving)

''Dr. Linehan was closing in on two seemingly opposed principles that could form the basis of a treatment: acceptance of life as it is, not as it is supposed to be; and the need to change, despite that reality and because of it.'' 

from New York Times article here on Dr Martha Linehan and her highly regarded extensive work and book - read full article and read her book if you wish to support learners  

 Link to full NYT article here The New York Times website.

Martha Linehan's autobiographical book here

R O S I E  's. Vlogs 

Video One supportive videos for some learners and a review of two excellent books - one by Dr Marsha Linehan

Rosie recommends this book as it very much deals with relationships - work and personal matters etc - attachments - black and white thinking etc

Rsoie ; I have also reviewed Mindfulness for BPD on my channel (also one most loved and used books for helping me with BPD) https://youtu.be/_352zTyAwh4

DBT (dialectical behavior therapy) video  
link above for Rosie : 


 recommended from Rosie

Recommended from Rosie


Rosies excellent helpful BLOG. here. 


For Parents  

Parenting is very hard - and to do it well - everyone needs help and the wisdom of support - errors here cause problems later for all - Winnicot and Tuber - Hall&Cook - Martha Linehan and Dr Koons, will help more now than Dr Spock 

General Links for learners and family if worried about loved ones 

UK: NHS support link 

  • Befrienders (Enter your country to find an emotional support helpline)

Help App - Befrienders Worldwide Launch 

Befrienders have launched a Help App which will allow users to find their nearest emotional support helpcentre, wherever in the world they are. This Help App will run on a mobile phone or PC.
Click on the link to run the Help App: https://www.help.befrienders.org
Further details about the Help App have been sent to all Befriender Help Centres and these can be viewed by clicking here.

Covid-19 virus
Befrienders Worldwide and our members around the world are fully aware and touched by the extreme challenges we are facing with the Covid-19 virus. We know how difficult it is to experience sudden restrictions on our lives, including the impact on our family and on our relationships, the impact on our working lives, and the sense of loss that we feel when we are physically isolated. Click here to read the whole document.

Race / Gender / Hate crime 

Hate Crime information - always ring Emergency Services in any emergency 
But this gives you information / advice for work or law 


Information about bullying and cyber-bullying for students, teachers and school administrators.

Library - summer updated for 2020 

books  / juxtaposition is to be encouraged in all expressions 

Students do read Maya Angelou, Primo Levi and Dee Brown if serious about knowing and discussing world history and diversity, racism, genocide protest and understanding - respecting the history of your mothers  / fathers  / grandparents  

I read the full Levi, Brown and Maya Angelou when a student -  so any young minds who follow this page have plenty of time to do so too.