A couple years ago I had the opportunity to view one of Wolfgang Laib’s pollen pieces at the Seattle Museum of Art. If nothing else, the work is certainly more than a sum of its thousands of pollen grains. Laib spends days collecting these golden grains by hand and then meticulously spreads them into a square which can be viewed from many angles. By patient accumulation, Laib creates beautiful hoverings of pure transcendent color.
From accumulation of color, my mind drifts to accumulation of form. And then the wonderful phenomenon called murmuration when hundreds, sometimes thousands of starlings or blackbirds gather and shift their collective selves over the sky. If you haven’t watched this video already, its one of my favorites.
Murmuration. The word itself is the sound of the world coming into being. Those lulling mur, mur’s conjure the slow emergent nature of things. In the studio I’ve been working with my own slow accumulations.
Using a blue roller ball pen I’ve been drawing one slow line at a time, accumulating hundreds of lines over many drawing sessions. In the process new and unexpected forms emerge. What I like about this particular drawing practice, is that each line registers a unique response to breath, pulse and the subtle grips and shifts of the body. Each line relates to what has come before and to what will come after. But with time and accumulation these drawings offer up something new, unified and greater than the sum of their parts.
Perhaps that is something that the world needs now. A reminder of the eternal that is buried deep inside the ephemeral nature of things.