The pumpkin harvest is in down at Atwater Market as the cold of winter inspires
fresh writing and song at Tea at Tympani Lane Records this season of Samhain.
Planning for the CD: Dance Summer Blue continues with a release date of
Christmas at www.tympanilanerecords.com to be available on CD Baby in January.
The poetry book Radio Storms has finished writing and I am casting around for a
publisher. A new music project is writing, CD: Equus: Of Summer Storms with 4
new songs. I hope to be performing in the Montreal Metro more frequently in the
coming winter months . . . The nature of Samhain or Hallowe’en in agricultural
society was a time to gather around a campfire and tell ghost stories to the
children and young adults about the ancestors and people from the past. I also
suspect these stories were interesting illustrations of negative karma and the
tragedy wrought by unnecessary cases of trespass. A very useful tradition to
promote peace in the Community.
“ The horror . . . the horror . . . “
- from the movie Apocalypse Now
“ By the time this concert ends this evening, 30,000 Africans will have died because of extreme poverty. By this time tomorrow evening, another 30,000. This does not make sense. ”
- Brad Pitt (Actor, Humanitarian)
The following are some thoughts on Minimalism and the Post Apocalypse Economy or in the Quest of Minimalist spaces . . . It is quite remarkable the amount of things that clutter our everyday spaces – garbage that needs to be recycled or tossed, closets full of things we no longer use, things that just take up space and like a burden drag us down. In the quest of Minimalist spaces, the beginnings of a paperless society and the storage of information/movies/music/books from hardcopy to the computer creating more space and a place to breathe, make the ideal of a virtual hard drive and virtual web sites very attractive. The idea of a paperless society – paperless files, warranties, product information, receipts, bills, contracts with digital signatures, income tax statements, hard mail letters all sent to email and on the hard drive, frees space into the conception of art and breath. With less comes a certain Zen, captured by negative space that emphasizes or draws attention to what is actually left in the living space, giving an unencumbered freedom and joy. Open spaces that encourage dialogue with life and embrace nothingness, as if in the Post Apocalypse is the embrace of the aesthetic of poverty. Sharing of resources, food, time creates dialogue as though enough could exist actually, in love relationships and friendships and is reflected in our surroundings that echo with artistic cache, a sense of the moment, as if we are living here and now within the peace of the Spirit. The things that exist in Minimalist spaces are well-loved reflections of the individual’s soul rhythms, and fulfill uses and are used, making a smaller ecological footprint, giving a certain freedom to pick up and move more easily, the ability to live in smaller spaces, and the conserving of resources in a reduced economy.
Collecting things on a large scale can be interpreted as an aussage of unhappiness or as an aesthetic of wealth and attraction to beautiful things. It is a very great gift to share large collections of things in public displays or in museum spaces to share the joy of endeavour and beauty with everyone and those that have less, even if only for a period of time, particularly art and the cultural effects of the society. Anytime someone of wealth purchases something they are supporting someone and this is positive. Ideally everything should have a place, and should be in its place, a certain adage that reflects on the economy of being and the importance of value. However, it is a society where everything or anything is potentially trash, possibly as a reflection of the “sex wars” and an emphasis on time and money. Everyday things are actually very highly developed pieces of technology, e.g. can openers, hair dryers, printers, kitchen appliances, cell phones – generally when they break it costs more to fix them, then to buy a new one. Resulting in very sophisticated pieces of trash that really could be recycled, reused for parts or repaired. Also, it is important to keep things we aren’t using in motion, if you aren’t using something, it is good to give it away to someone who could use it. Selling it secondhand on Craigslist creates household monies and giving it to Goodwill/Salvation Army will get it to someone who needs it while raising monies for the charity.
In the economy of spaces – for storage, you should be able to see everything at a glance – refrigerators are too deep,you can’t see into them enough which causes food wastage, maybe make them half as deep and wider or make them horizontal on the floor with a lid that opens up and inside is a half shelf but you can immediately see everything that is in the refrigerator (and it should be ecological without threatening the ozone). One idea is to make a ceramic type refrigerator with an exterior double wall with cold water running between the walls with a pump, it’s a clean cold source (depending on the availability of water). Open-ended cube like bookcases are wonderful to fill with wicker baskets or for clothes, books, files etc. In a less is more aesthetic the laptop computer could reign as all things – television/DVD player/MP3 player/phone/alarm clock/clock/calendar/internet/work station.
The parameters of my Minimalist reverie included keeping anything that was art, kitchenware or an antique. I threw out a bookcase, 2 file drawers and half the closet went to Goodwill to achieve a certain economy of space in my small apartment. Basically, what is left are some books, art, some antique furniture, a new huge cubby hole bookcase, the computer, guitar, lute and a few plants. I now have the perfect space under my window for my ottoman, guitar and music stand so that I can compose and play music while gazing out into the trees. I work at the kitchen table and sleep on some pillows on the stone floor, the bedding fitting neatly into the closet during the day. I take public transit and frequently walk to destinations in the city. I have an internet phone but no radio, stereo or television. The computer plays music, connects me to my friends and business associates, is a place of research, work and creation.
These streamlined spaces are healthy and beautiful, as if the breath in symmetry speaks of a new age, a Romantic Enlightenment, a certain poetry in form, inclusion and communication. In the search for Minimalist spaces is an expression of hope in the Post Apocalypse economy, as if the ideal of enough was enough and could exist for all peoples.
The Way of Peace,