Infinity Loops

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Infinity Loops 2008. Enamel on canvas.




The title of the exhibition refers to a succession of moments. The Macquarie defines a moment as an indefinitely short space of time, an instant. Moments are short unmeasured segments of time.

Mostly we are concerned with the quantitative aspect of time. The clock determines our coming and goings. It marks points in time when we are to be at particular places.

However, durations of time also have a constantly changing quality. We can slip out of time and find ourselves in a moment of infinity.  This experience is always close at hand and happens in an instant. We move between measured time and the subjective experience of duration.

Pouring alternately black and white enamel paint into each other on a slightly tilted surface provides a record of performed pouring and makes the passing of moments visible. Like the growth rings of a tree show its age, the traces of the painting process show how many pourings have been performed, how many moments have passed.

As the enamel paint slides down the tilted surface, one moment flows into another. This traces on the surface create a timeline that speaks not of minutes and hours but of moments and their intrinsic quality. Each pouring is distinct and no two pourings are alike just as no two moments are the same.

What happens in the five hours that I am occupied with repeating the same activity of pouring black paint into white paint and white paint into black paint?

While occupied with this repetitive activity, the natural light is constantly changing, as are the surrounding sounds. While concentrating on this activity, everything else falls away and the continual chatter of the mind diminishes. My experience as a separate identity disappears and a sensation of connectedness occurs. It is not me who pours the paint anymore but I become an instrument in the process of pouring. In moments like these, measurable time loses its relevance and only the present exists.

At the still point of the turning world. Neither flesh nor fleshless; neither from nor towards; at the still point, there the dance is.

But neither arrest nor movement. And do not call in fixity, where past and the future are gathered. Neither movement from nor towards, neither ascent nor decline. Except for the point, the still point, there would be no dance, and there is only the dance.

I can only say there we have been; but can not say where.

And I cannot say, how long, for that is to place it in time.

(T. S. Eliot) from Burt Norton in Four Quarters quoted in Brandstetter 2000, 334