“What an unreliable thing is time--when I want it to fly, the hours stick to me like glue. And what a changeable thing, too. Time is the twine to tie our lives into parcels of years and months. Or a rubber band stretched to suit our fancy. Time can be the pretty ribbon in a little girl's hair. Or the lines in your face, stealing your youthful colour and your hair. .... But in the end, time is a noose around the neck, strangling slowly.”
why does the school year begin in september? in a subconscious anticipation of my school year, (or dreading the beginning of the school year), i have been noticing way too many guardian self help articles to help you get through this time, from 'how to hack life's admin', to 'how to get back on track for autumn' - and then going into explaining the several ways in which you can bring back your eating, exercise, sleeping habits, as a reminder.
a few words on life's admin - the woman writing it started off with saying that she 'forgot to get a visa for a country' - how can you forget? forgetting comes with an entitlement of being able to cross borders without being questioned about your identity and your rights to pass through a country and also how can you count this as being 'life's admin', is leisure life's admin? is leisure 'not' life's admin, is some people's life's admin called life admin's whereas some people just call it life ...... tbc
(do not read if u dont want to feel stressed n slightly criticise them)
ONE WAY TO THINK ABOUT MOYRA DAVEY’S WAY OF WORKING across photography, film and text is in terms of economy. Economies of production: photograph in the home, or occasionally on the street, where time and ‘material’ are your own. Send work in the mail to galleries, or more often, friends, replacing large insurance costs for the price of postage stamps. Her piece ‘Copperheads’ focused on the scratched profiles of pennies, one per photo, in a grid of 100. It was 1990; the art market bubble had deflated, the Berlin Wall had fallen, and Lincoln’s face had lost its nose through casual circulation.
Economies of class – for the signifiers of Davey’s work are very middle. Things in her images include: dust under the bed, spines of old books, coffee cups, the corners of rooms, an open medicine cabinet, her dog taking a dump, herself in downward-facing dog pose – the entropy of domestic disorder. Some of these subjects are of the kind you now see on Instagram—the everyday, self-reflexive mundane—but Davey’s been taking analogue photographs since the eighties, of what Chris Kraus called ‘the texture of spaces fully inhabited’. They have a literariness, without any heaviness – in 2012 she sent a series of aerograms, her preferred format, to the writer Lynne Tillman to be paired with text snippets or unconventional captions, before her exhibition at Murray Guy in New York. ‘Indolence. Torpor. Ill-Humour’ was the title – like every artist’s struggle against stagnation.
Economies of reading: Davey asks how much one should consume in order to produce, and whether it’s OK to be greedy, rather than worthy, in one’s choices. And economy of expression: write in fragments, respond in terse statements – as she does here. Given that her practice is itself epistolary, my request to communicate via snail mail was presumptuous. She writes towards the end of our exchange of self-censorship, and in writing back rather than speaking out loud she had indeed censored herself in a way that is less possible in dialogue. Put differently, she did the edit.
‘Thinking in economies’