muddy horses running until their death for the pleasure of society. society itself running after its death for the pleasure of the economy. horse number one is a great black stallion who wears his sadness well, i would like to sleep in his arms. he reminds me of all the people who expect nothing, a full-proof horse. horse number two, limping horse, old solitary man who has lost the desire to love. i expect him to last long, his death will be slow, he cares for no one, he has no worries. mare number three, she takes everything so seriously, she has harnessed herself with the misery of others. it slows one down, it winds one down, it overexcites one’s heart. yet she is so tough now, she will be proud till the end. the fourth horse seems to be thirsty, his big dry tongue hangs on his right side. he has the will to live, he is interested. he keeps up with all the other horses from afar. he is so handsome, he is so blond, horse number five with all his ribbons he resembles the sun! he emits a heat, a fearsome charm. very popular, he runs as far as the eye can see. i put down all my money on the sixth horse, an adolescent horse charging towards eternity. a bad omen, forced arrogance. a wind from the north, a family torn apart. number seven is the horse who died first. polluted horse coughing up his lungs. he was yellow and sick, he fell on his side. the greatest of the clouds came and got him.
To test the limits of the relationship between performer and audience, Abramović developed one of her most challenging (and best-known) performances. She assigned a passive role to herself, with the public being the force which would act on her.
Abramović had placed upon a table 72 objects that people were allowed to use (a sign informed them) in any way that they chose. Some of these were objects that could give pleasure, while others could be wielded to inflict pain, or to harm her. Among them were scissors, a knife, a whip, and, most notoriously, a gun and a single bullet. For six hours the artist allowed the audience members to manipulate her body and actions.
Initially, members of the audience reacted with caution and modesty, but as time passed (and the artist remained impassive) several people began to act quite aggressively. As Abramović described it later:
“The experience I learned was that…if you leave decision to the public, you can be killed.” … “I felt really violated: they cut my clothes, stuck rose thorns in my stomach, one person aimed the gun at my head, and another took it away. It created an aggressive atmosphere. After exactly 6 hours, as planned, I stood up and started walking toward the public. Everyone ran away, escaping an actual confrontation.”
no permitir que se nos desperdicie la gracia de los pequeños momentos de libertad que podemos gozar: una mesa compartida con gente que queremos, unas criaturas a las que damos amparo, una caminata entre las árboles, la gratitud de un abrazo. un acto de arrojo como saltar de una casa en llamas. éstos no son hechos racionales, pero no es importante que lo sean, nos salvaremos por los afectos.
el mundo nada puede contra un hombre que canta en la miseria.
i must not fear. fear is the mind-killer. fear is the little-death that brings total obliteration. i will face my fear. i will permit it to pass over me and through me. and when it has gone past I will turn the inner eye to see its path. where the fear has gone there will be nothing. only I will remain.
…it doesn’t matter what you do, he said, so long as you change something from the way it was before you touched it into something that’s like you after you take your hands away. the difference between the man who just cuts lawns and a real gardener is in the touching, he said. the lawn-cutter might just as well not have been there at all; the gardener will be there a lifetime.
el hermoso consuelo de encontrar el mundo en un alma, de abrazara mi especie en una criatura amiga
hay días en que me levanto con una esperanza demencial, momentos en los que siento que las posibilidades de una vida más humana están al alcance de nuestras manos. éste es uno de esos días.
y, entonces, me he puesto a escribir casi a tientas en la madrugada, con urgencia, como quien saliera a la calle a pedir ayuda ante la amenaza de un incendio, o como un barco que, a punto de desparecer, hiciera una última y ferviente seña a un puerto que sabe cercano pero ensordecido por el ruido de la ciudad e por la cantidad de letreros que le enturbian la mirada.
porque a medida que nos relacionamos de manera abstracta más nos alejamos del corazón de las cosas y una indiferencia metafísica se adueña de nosostros mientras toman poder entidades sin sangre ni nombres proprios. trágicamente, el hombre esta perdiendo el diálogo con los demás y el reconocimiento del mundo que lo rodea, siendo que es allí donde se dan el encuentro, la posibilidad del amor, los gestos supremos de la vida.
the unabridged journals of sylvia plath; sylvia plath
…and never be afraid to experience pain; and never shut myself up in a numb core of nonfeeling, or stop questioning and criticizing life and take the easy way out. to learn and think: to think and live; to live and learn: this always, with new insight, new understanding, and new love.