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2006 08 04
Anatomy of Attitudes


By Ed Nixon

Gary Michael Dault has just published Angle of Incidence 14: Berry Box. It's a lovely piece about emptiness, fullness and their ephemeral connection across the continuum of use. He spirals into an open meditation on an old (hopefully renewed) project to categorize "the physical disposition of objects in space, and ... [chart] their resulting spatial utterances and eloquences into the visual equivalent of something like Northrop Frye’s Anatomy of Criticism." He seems discouraged by the magnitude of the project, perhaps by his effrontery in the attempt. I speak as much to myself as to him when I say: The journey begins with the first step and continues with other steps until there are none left to take -- otherwise there is little to be "done" along the way.



Attitudes are human things -- intentional -- made manifest through our utterances, our words, our scribbles. Our words are clothed in rules and contexts and thereby become a web of disposiition -- sometimes a verbal fashion statement, sometimes more. A map. Our verbal web will stretch, pulse and twist in response to our journey's clinging steps -- whether stumbling, hurried or eloquent.



Attitudes can be seen as well as bespoke, if we will just attend: watch, connect and then see. The attitudes we see become the raw material of our webs. And all our webs, taken together, comprise a context for our journey, the rules of our road. But attitudes we see are mirages at the horizon -- ephemeral like the path between emptiness and fullness. Attitudes we see will bob in and out of shadows, shimmer, refract and reflect with each twist of our web -- with each shudder of recognition. So we need our words. They create waypoints that guide us and keep us safe.
[email this story] Posted by Ed Nixon on 08/04 at 08:55 AM

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