Notes to follow…
As reported in the News Just In section of the website, the software taking the timelapse videos crashed on this day, leaving no trace of the movements of Andrew Haining’s Naked Gluing engagement with Push and Pull. Someone had brought a bag of apples into the space and this video was shot while Andrew had a break from his gluing.
And here is the truncated timelapse begun from sometime around 4pm when the software crash was discovered.
Notes and photos to follow soon…
& each time the moment falls
the emphasis of the moment falls
into time differently
if not the present
these caring accretions,
the life that has gone
repeating in place
each time the tongue moves
it moves into time differently
a bundle of precisely-wired blue
& this & this
Kate Fagan, return to a new physics.
The room was as we had left it the previous Saturday, despite the fact that Sam and Yasmin had been living with it – or rather, walking through it as part of their living – for five days. Actually when I arrived in the early afternoon Yaz and Sam were Push Pulling the other rooms on the ground floor. The launch of the Locksmith magazine was happening that night, and so they were at work taking the kitchen table into the lounge-room and the lounges into the kitchen to best arrange the space for book-selling and beer drinking. They bought an over-priced bag of wood to burn in one of those bulb-shaped iron fireplaces for out the back. In the timelapse you see them busying about the top left corner while the day began breathing through the room as wind and light. The breeze registers on the timelapse by a jerking movement of the string and paper dangling from the bike-wheel-mouse-trap chandelier, and the gill-like motion of the orange tape that links the brown to the yellow colour zone. The light registers in reflection, shades and shimmers. I helped Sam and Yaz measure and mark up the wall to hang Sam’s painting. Yaz was enthusiastic about what we had done to the room although she had not registered the colour theme, which goes to show you had to be there. The Locksmith crew were behind on rent. This wasn’t so much of a problem because the landlords were the mechanics a few doors down and they were reasonable and friendly people, but Sam had been avoiding speaking to them and so Yaz told him forcefully that he had to go and speak to them now. Sam trudged out of the room with the look of a naughty boy, muttering things under his breath.
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There were no places to park on Botany Road so I found a spot on Wyndham Street and wandered through the park behind Locksmith. The construction workers from the site next to the park were all having their lunch and had spread out like school children in the playground, bunched in groups of twos and threes and occasionally a few more. They paid me next to no attention but that didn’t stop me fantasising a scene in which someone (my mind was picturing Fred Lee) tells the construction workers that I was only just starting my work day (at 1pm!) and what that work actually entails. In my fantasy the workers start taking the piss out of me for being a bourgeois lay-about and a few of them get quite annoyed and say things like some people have too much time on their hands.
I had not even been at Locksmith long enough to click on the timelapse before Keg arrived. In the first frame of the timelapse she is crouched on the floor arranging the puzzle pieces into a two-way arrow.
Before that we had taken the couch off the top of Zanny’s class’ aftermodern sculpture. Keg said the stack was making her uncomfortable and we quickly decided to give the room its second domestic iteration. So strong was our will for domesticity that we even swept up the floor, but instead of throwing out the swept pile, we put it in a drawer in the sideboard cabinet which we placed against the opposite wall from where Astrid and Alba had placed it in the first domestic iteration. Since this was a collaborative composition many of our ideas were discussed and the timelapse contains numerous frames of us consulting with each other about the positioning of certain objects. We seemed to be thinking along similar lines because it all happened very easily and without disagreement. We both liked the idea of open space in the middle of the room, with only the carpet, perhaps because it was the inverse of the teetering stack that we encountered when we arrived. Keg pointed out that with the massage table standing up on its back legs, kinked in the middle, it looked some frightening creature bucking. And the table-creature duly obliged when we tried to move it, jumping back and snapping its jaws. Partly because of their number, and partly because Kaprow singles them out in his Points of View text, the chairs were difficult compositional units. In the end we stacked the yellow ones in one corner and the brown in another, with vague ideas about some kind of diagonal offset, but really we just wanted them out of the way so we could make an open space. The massage table went on the wall opposite the sideboard and Keg’s two-way arrow was swept up as a result. I asked her before I destroyed it but she didn’t have the slightest preciousness about it. As a Push and Pull veteran (she went to a re-enactment in New York in 2006) she is totally down with the ephemerality, and this was the first of a few carefully composed pieces she made that were quickly disturbed by changing circumstances. We put away as many things as we could in the sideboard but there were still many objects (like all the accumulated pieces of wood) that had no really obvious placement in a domestic scene, so we just had to hide it away neatly in corners. A great deal of the stuff in the room had come from the wooden warehouse that Keg lives in, known as The Barn, and there are so many objects owned by so many people crammed into all the spaces of The Barn that it is, as Keg said, a permanent Push and Pull. Nothing gets chucked out because even though its been sitting there for 6 months, apparently so and so still wants it. Actually, Keg’s partner Lucas had seen the record players and the massage table on the timelapse and was disappointed that she had taken them. I know people who would literally go insane if they had to live in a situation of clutter like that. Hilik came by on his motorcycle and was excited about the project. He said he had been telling everyone and was planning to do something else soon. Frank from next-door came in for his customary quick hello. After we’d finished composing our open interior we rewarded ourselves with a juice from the fruit shop.
I arrived at Locksmith with the world’s most disappointing sandwich and sludgy coffee. I had freshly sprained a joint in my lower back from some iffy breakfalling at aikido earlier in the morning. I sat in one of the ubiquitous yellow chairs and ate my sanga. A lovely guy came in straight away, as I was eating. He was an artist whose show was opening that arvo down the road. We had one of those conversations where neither person knows exactly what’s going on but the experience is enjoyable and companionably meaningful. I think he was inviting me to his opening for a wine. I think I was stumbling through a sketchy explanation of Push and Pull, gently urging him to touch stuff while he was in the space.
Minutes later Lachlan and Sally came to visit. Together we tugged things around the room and opened the space into an airy loungeroom. Lach was on his way to work and it had just started pouring with rain, so we stood and watched Botany Road for a while. I took them on an anecdotal tour of the room and its now-effaced iterations. “Here’s where there were knives hammered into the wall,” I pointed, “and here’s where Lucas projected the Kaprow presentation.”