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Landscape of memory…

Tybee Island, Georgia, USA, Feb 2008

Tybee Island, Georgia, USA, Feb 2008

I am aware that I have been rather ‘slow’ in my response to your last post Andy and this could indeed start to become rather a cliché in my posting habits. Being a new comer to blogging I am feeling rather inexperienced in this kind of format and the challenges that throws up whilst trying to reflect and respond.
Having returned from three weeks away I feel that I have needed to think about all that I saw and did and to discover if that has a bearing and impact on what I am thinking about in this project.

My first over-riding thoughts of my trip are of a more political nature, of poverty and wealth, of elections and of war. My most abiding memory currently of 100s of US troops being paraded through Atlanta Airport, cheered on by, what seemed to be, everybody there.

Over the last week I was interested to watch a highly informative discussion about the aftermath of the Iraqi war, chaired by Jon Snow and broadcast between films, over an hour long channel 4 news broadcast, live from Amman. Despite the obvious difficulty in putting this together and the challenging commentary/discussion I felt inspired to be party to the opinions and debates of these important figures: the opposition; the questioning and the pushing for voices and representations that might be over-looked or completely silenced.

You might ask what my point is and what this has to do with the slow project but it occurs to me that we are fortunate to have the opportunity to have such an open and public discussion and the freedom to discover on our own terms, not at the behest of a political movement or agenda or at least for the most part, barring such issues as the rather obvious positioning of the crafts in historical terms and as you comment ‘closely allied to fine art practices’

I guess a blogging format can extend an opportunity to reach a wider constituency and potentially encourage an International and open debate. I still hope this will happen. Whilst away I thought more of difference rather than of likeness, of how I have very inherent systems of value/s and how and why we all behave and think differently. Whilst the pace of life here seems rushed at times I am aware that this is even more the case in the States, the rush and push seeming palpable.

Having also attended the Society for North American Goldsmith’s conference in Savannah, GA I was most interested in a presentation by Iris Eichenberg. Iris traversed her work from the present backwards. She talked of Heimat and how we can’t escape the landscape of memory and life or perhaps the memory and life of landscapes that we live with and through: how this seeps into all aspects of our practice and transcends all we touch. As she commented ‘Time passing but always returning’

So having come home it is to notions of ‘time’ that I return: of timeliness; of grasping and grappling with time and getting back to notions of being in my own time. It’s time to get back to my practice and the making and that which will ultimately engage me back to a place of my own reality of slowness and the genuine rhythms of my working process.

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One thought on “An ongoing conversation between Helen Carnac and Andy Horn:

  1. I’ve enjoyed reading your blog. Paul Harper told us about it. Having just moved both my household and my workshop, I’m very aware of making a place to slow the world down. Moving all the stuff has been an intense experience of physically handling memories, time, experiences. What a curious, elastic thing time can be. As spring reluctantly arrives there’s that too, nature’s rhythms as a steady beat to it all and a measure of time passing – friends, workshops, homes passing. Well a few more boxes to move today, some precious things to find and put away carefully, lights to hang, supplies to unpack. By next week I should be back in a working shop – my time machine.

    All the best from New Bedford, Massachusetts

    David Richardson

    Paul Harper will be our guest, keynote speaker and panel moderator at the 12th annual Furniture Society conference in Purchase, N.Y. this June, and we are very much looking forward to his participation.

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