'Attendant' is designed as an ongoing time-based installation, the first element of which (above) was created over a period of six months, aiming to depict a physical representation of the weight, landscape and scale of waiting. I wanted to use the notion of patience as a creative mechanism to document the spaces we inhabit in between thought and action. The repetitive nature illustrates a constant conscious struggle to return to a balanced, meditative state.
Over the years, many people have asked me why I felt so compelled to spend such a long time with just one word.
This is an attempt to answer that very complicated question:
Because there is never enough time // because there is always too much time // because every e l o n g a t e d minute is agony // because each delicious second strokes my brain as it ricochets around my skull // because nothing is too much trouble // because everything is impossible // because I’m at a loss // because the air is thick with regret // because I haven’t met a possibility I didn’t like yet // because truth perpetuates the myth // because lies offer no surprise // because I lost my watch but I can still hear it ticking // because I can’t go on // because I must go on // because the scorpions are circling // because the bees are returning // because the worm still turns // because nothing changes // because everything must // because there is a weight invisible // because it turns out company doesn’t love misery // because it was a decision too far // because life at the crossroads has become comfortable // because the choices on offer are not my own // because someone must bear witness // because the time will not come // because the time will not go // because it is time to wait // because pause.
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Somewhere between reading Samuel Beckett’s ‘Waiting for Godot’ and Nietzsche’s concept of ‘The Eternal Return’ I discovered waiting.
The concept of eternal recurrence, and the pressure it can put on each individual’s choices, no matter how great or small fascinates me.
"The heaviest weight. - What if some day or night a demon were to steal into your loneliest loneliness and say to you : 'This life as you now live it and have lived it you will have to live once again and innumerable times again; and there will be nothing new in it, but every pain and every joy and every thought and sigh and everything unspeakably small or great in your life must return to you, all in the same succession and sequence - even this spider and this moonlight between the trees, and even this moment and I myself. The eternal hourglass of existence is turned over again and again, and you with it, speck of dust!' Would you not throw yourself down and gnash your teeth and curse the demon who spoke thus? Or have you once experienced a tremendous moment when you would have answered him: 'You are a god, and never have I heard anything more divine. ' If this thought gained power over you, as you are it would transform and possibly crush you; the question in each and every thing, 'Do you want this again and innumerable times again?' would lie on your actions as the heaviest weight! Or how well disposed would you have to become to yourself and to life to long for no thing more fervently than for this ultimate eternal confirmation and seal?"
- Friedrich Nietzsche, The Gay Science.
'En Attendant Godot' (Waiting for Godot) perfectly describes the feeling of being stuck, feeling powerless to change a situation or incapable of making a decision about how to alter a dissatisfying position for fear of choosing the wrong direction.
“Je suis comme ça. Ou j'oublie tout de suite ou je n'oublie jamais."
“Nothing happens. Nobody comes, nobody goes. It's awful.”
“ESTRAGON: I can't go on like this.
VLADIMIR: That's what you think.”
- Samuel Beckett, Waiting For Godot.
The video below is a small example of the process used to create what has become a work approximately 2metres 60cm wide by 1 metre 50cm tall.