Saturday, 28 December 2013



My self is not confined to my body. It extends into all the things I have made and all the things around me. Without these things, I would not be myself; I would not be a human being. I would merely be a human ape, a primate." (JS, PP 202-3) The tendency to attribute human qualities to animals and the nonhuman world has been critiqued, even denigrated, as "merely" projection. Jung's approach to this issue opens up an important and fresh perspective that is in line with the newly emerging paradigm of interconnectedness: he considered the capacity to identify with animals an innate instinct arising from our shared evolutionary heritage. Disavowal of this capacity may itself be a symptom of the youthfulness of our species, in its effort to shore up our fragile consciousness by creating an artificially firm boundary between ourselves and other life, a boundary not considered as important among tribal people. 

Source: The Earth Has a Soul, C.G.Jung on Nature, Technology & Modern Life, edited by Meredith Sabini; North Atlantic Books, Berkley, California

Sunday, 8 December 2013


Capriccio: difesa apotropaica
Photographic documentation

capriccio --- 1. ...voglia o idea, che ha del fantastico e dell'irragionevole, e per lo più nasce in modo subitaneo, per leggerezza di natura o per poca riflessione. Probabilmente da CAPRO animale di bizzarra natura, di corto cervello, ovvero come se dicesse cosa inattesa che balza dal cervello, quasi salto di capra
2. Dicesi così anche quel tremore che scorre per le carni e fa arricciare i capelli per freddo, per febbre, o per orrore di checchessia. 

capriccio (whim) --- 1.  a desire or idea, both fantastic and irrational, which comes on suddenly, through lightness of nature or through little reflection. Probably from CAPRO (Goat) the animal of bizarre nature, dimwitted, or, as in saying of something unexpected that leaps from the mind, almost like a jumping goat ...
2. So too is called that tremor that runs through the body and curls the hair in reaction to cold, fever, or horror of anything. (My own liberal translation)

Source: Dizionario Etimologico Online

capriccio |kəˈprēCHēˌō-CHō|noun ( pl. capriccios )lively piece of musictypically one that is short and free in form.• painting or other work of art representing a fantasy or a mixture of real and imaginary features.ORIGIN early 17th cent. (denoting a sudden change of mind): from Italian, literally head with the hair standing on end, hence horror, later a sudden start (influenced by capra goat, associated with frisky movement), from capo head + riccio hedgehog.

07.12.2013 Goya y Lucientes

Atropos o Las Parcas
Francisco de Goya y Lucientes
Pinturas Negras /Black Paintings

The figure on the right, with her back to the viewer, holds scissors in her hand, leading Brugada to give this painting, with its strange scene, the name of Atropos: one of the Fates, who cut the thread of life. Indeed, the thread is held by the woman on the left, identified as Clotho, who uses it to bind a small human figure wrapped in cloth or paper. In the background, with a magnifying glass or a mirror, is Lachesis, the third of the classical divinities that controlled the lives and destinies of humankind. The figure in the foreground doesn't fit the classical myth of the Fates. The work has allegorical underpinnings and meanings that are more difficult to fathom, corresponding to the complex compositional world of Goya's imagination. 

Source: Museo Nacional del Prado, On-line gallery

The painting is a reinterpretation of the mythological subject of the goddesses of destiny—the Moirai or fates as recounted in HomerHesiodVirgil and other classical writers. These "Daughters of Night"[4] were headed by Atropos, the inexorable goddess of death, who carries a few scissors to cut the thread of life; Clotho, with her distaff (which Goya replaces with a doll or newborn child, possibly an allegory of life), and Lachesis, the spinning one, which in this representation looks across a lens or in a mirror and symbolizes time, since she was the one who measured the length of the fiber. To the three female figures suspended in the air a fourth figure is added in the foreground. Possibly male, this figure's hands are bound behind him as if is captive. If this interpretation is true, the fates would be deciding the destiny of the man whose bound hands cannot be opposed to his fate. It has been speculated that he may represent Prometheus, who was bound on a mountain and left to be savaged by an eagle as punishment for stealing fire from Mount Olympus.[5] All four are hideously ugly.[6]

Source: Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Walking with Goya, 
with thanks.

Friday, 6 December 2013

02.12.2013 Bis

Apotropaic effect of nakedness[edit]

Many historical references suggest that anasyrma had dramatic or supernatural effect - positive or negative. Pliny the Elder wrote that a menstruating woman who uncovers her body can scare away hailstorms, whirlwinds and lightning. If she strips naked and walks around the field, caterpillars, worms and beetles fall off the ears of corn. Even when not menstruating, she can lull a storm out at sea by stripping.[4]

La Fontaine plate
According to folklore, women lifted their skirts to chase off enemies in Ireland and China.[5] A story from The Irish Times (September 23, 1977) reported a potentially violent incident involving several men, which was averted by a woman exposing her genitals to the attackers. According to Balkan folklore, when it rained too much, women would run into the fields and lift their skirts to scare the gods and end the rain.[6] In Jean de La Fontaine's Nouveaux Contes (1674), a demon is repulsed by the sight of a woman lifting her skirt. Associated carvings, called sheela na gigs, were common on medieval churches in northern Europe and the British Isles.

Source:  Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia,


Non solo gli amuleti che rappresentano simbolicamente il fallo, ma anche il linguaggio e gesti osceni sono destinati allo scatenamento di una potenza, quella sessuale, che ha effetti di provocazione fecondante sulla vegetazione, sul gruppo umano e sul cosmo, ovvero ha effetti apotropaici e profilattici contro presenze mitiche (demoni, male, morti, streghe, iettatori, un prete, un carro mortuario vuoto, un gatto nero), portatrici di una forza disgregante che attentano alla pienezza vitale. …
Ciò spiega anche perché, quando ci si sente aggrediti da una forza disgregante, ci si difende toccandosi i testicoli.
In una società di modello maschilista, a questa precauzione o difesa apotropaica può ricorrere evidentemente soltanto il maschio, anche se talvolta, negli usi contadini, la donna  ricorre a ripetuti colpi sul proprio sedere.  Altra pratica, simile  a questa … in forma residuale e con trasmissione da madre a figlia, è quella di grattarsi la natica destra, da parte delle donne,  per scacciare il malocchio. Senza dubbio, entrambe le pratiche equivalgono al toccamento dei testicoli, oppure volendo azzardare un'ipotesi che andrebbe più approfondita,  si potrebbe intravedere in questi scongiuri femminili un forma residuale tabuizzata dell'antico anasyrma, o sollevamento delle vesti, per mostrare gli organi sessuali.


Source: Malocchio e Jettatura,  Le forme, la storia, l'analisi di un'antic e universlae superstizione dalle prime testimonianze letterarie ai giorni nostri, di Erberto Peroia; Newton Compton editori s.r.l., Roma; 1995

Not only amulets that symbolically represent the phallus, but also language and obscene gestures are intended to unleash a sexual power, with the effect of provoking fertility on vegetation, on the humans as a group and the cosmos, that is to say, have apotropaic and prophylactic effects against mythical presences (demons, evil, the dead, witches, jinxes, a priest, an empty hearse, a black cat), bearers of a disruptive force that threaten the fullness of life. ...
This also explains why, when feeling attacked by a divisive force, one protects oneself by touching his testicles .

In a male model society, this precaution or apotropaic defence can obviously be only used by the male, although sometimes, in peasant traditions, women resort to repeated blows on their butt. Another similar practice, ... in a residual form and transmitted from mother to daughter, is the scratching the right buttock, by women , to ward off the evil eye. No doubt, both practices are equivalent to touching of the testicles, or, hazarding a hypothesis which would need to be studied more in depth, in these feminine exorcisms, one could catch a glimpse of a residual form of the tabued, ancient anasyrma, or the lifting of clothing to expose the sexual organs.

(My own translation from the original Italian.)  


From the series: Conversations
Star cloak (Mid-leap)
work in progress
ink on paper
14.8 x 10.6cm


Tuesday, 3 September 2013


Mountain Animals: The Bear
raw clay on rock
Chamanna d'Es-cha

included in the works of
The Red Earth Society
at Chamanna d'Es-cha SAC hütte
from Sept. 1st 2013


    The Woman with the Horn is clearly 
a figure in illustration of a myth already
known. It is addressed to the mind in the 
waking state (jagarita-sthana) as common
to all men (vaisvanara), its function being
to bring society into accord with the
rhythm of Nature by means of the mythic
image here illustrated in an art that main-
tains the separate forms of moon and
female (a is not not-a),  yet enhances the
significance of the female role and pro-
vides access to the magic of creation
through her.

Source: Historical Atlas of World Mythologs, Vol I; The Way of the Animal Powers; Part 2: Mythologies of the Great Hunt; Joseph Campbell; Perennial Library, Harper & Row, Publishers, New York, 1988; pp xxiii


It is because he hears the voices of the
stones and trees that are speaking, un-
heard to us all, that the shaman does not
live like other men in relation only to the
appearances of thing. Hearing their
songs, he is led by them to the song
within himself, through which he is sue-
tained in a life inflated by the breath and
winds of the unseen. The powers of
which he thus becomes the vehicle may
seem to be supernatural, but they are ac-
tually of nature itself. One thinks of the
lines of the poet Wordsworth:

                                 For I have learned
To look on nature, not as in the hour
Of thoughtless youth; but hearing often times
The still sad music of humanity,
Nor harsh nor grating, though of ample power
To chasten and subdue. And I have felt
A presence that disturbs me with the joy
Of elevated thoughts; a sense sublime
Of something far more deeply infused,
Whose dwelling is the light of setting suns,
And the round ocean of the living air,
And the blue sky, and in the mind of man;
A motion and a spirit, that impels
All thinking things, all objects of all thought,
And rolls through all things. 123* .

Source: Historical Atlas of World Mythologs, Vol I; The Way of the Animal Powers; Part 2: Mythologies of the Great Hunt; Joseph Campbell; Perennial Library, Harper & Row, Publishers, New York, 1988; pp 179

123* William Wordsworth, "Lines Composed a Few Miles Above Tintern Abbey, July 13, 1789," in thomas Hutchinson (ed.9, The Poetical Works of William Wordsworth (New York: Oxford University Press, 1923), p207, II. 88-102.

included in the works of
The Red Earth Society
at Chamanna d'Es-cha SAC hütte
from Sept. 1st 2013


Woman with the Horn
Performance documentation
Albula Pass

Link to 28.03.2012

included in the works of
The Red Earth Society
at Chamanna d'Es-cha SAC hütte
from Sept. 1st 2013


photographic documentation, trial run, work in progress

Monday, 22 July 2013

22.07.2013 Documentation


@number5 GmbH

22.07.2013 bis


Photographed at:
number5 GmbH
22nd July 2013


Red Earth

Collection jar and spoon 

26/30th June 2011
On Carretera a Playa Rincòn 
Dominican Republic

Photographed at:
number5 GmbH

22nd July 2013

Friday, 19 July 2013


"The Yámana, who lived on the southern and western coasts of Tierra del Fuego, practiced two important ceremonies for the initiation of young men and women: the Chiexaus and the Kina. Their purpose was to educate the initiates in the oral traditions of the society, moral behavior, and adult roles. The Chiexaus took place when abundant food was available so that a large group could come together for a considerable period. The ceremony sometimes lasted months. The Kina was a more specialized initiation for men. Special dances were performed at both ceremonies, during which participants held painted wands while spirits were impersonated by already-initiated men wearing body paint and bark or leather masks, such as the bark mask seen here." 

Source: Infinity of Nations

18.07.2013 bis

The Dark Side of the Moon: Earth, Chalk and Charcoal
Photographic Documentation: Details
circa 10.00 - 11.25h


The Dark Side of the Moon: Earth, Chalk and Charcoal
Performance documentation
circa 10.00 - 11.25h

Tuesday, 9 July 2013

Tuesday, 30 April 2013


Layers of Numbness (pins and needles)
Photographic documentation


Layers of Nothing (detail)
page 3
charcoal on paper

From Layers of Nothing 26.04.2013
work in process

 The nothing was pressing on me, as nothing was coming and all-being, and I took the large Fabriano that's been hanging around for years, and put it on the floor, and put some good music on, and jumped in with Nothing. As nothing is nothing, ziltch, the void, there was nothing to do except write, "nothing, nothing, nothing, nothing", over and over again, separate that into "no thing", and rub it out, and re write it, and start spitting about how terrible it is to be nothing(...)
 And rub it all out. Because I can't even admit these things. (The thought process if funny, because at the same time as admitting them, I say I can't admit them....) And then I look down at what I'm doing and see the layers of nothing. That's when it clicked for me. Layers of Nothing. 

 Layers of Nothing opened up to layers of so many things: layers of sadness, layers of fear, layers of blankets, layers of nausea, layers of memory - as each layer came up, I'd write it down, on the Fabriano, then on my sheet of paper, or on my sheet of paper, then onto the Fabriano.  And today, I continue:
layers of numbness,
layers of fabric....

From an email to Andrew Smaldone 29.04.2013

Working with my Mother

Tuesday, 9 April 2013

09.04.2013 bis

Breach (water drawings)
Photographic documentation (hair, water, ink)
14.43 - 15.33h

verb [ with obj. ]make a gap in and break through (a wall, barrier, or defense): the riverbreached its bank.• break or fail to observe (a lawagreementor code of conduct).no obj. ] (of a whalerise and break through the surface of the water.


Photographic documentation (trial / hair)

Sunday, 24 March 2013

Saturday, 2 March 2013


From long ago, from far away...(shadows)
Photographic documentation
Lusaka, Zambia

Saturday, 19 January 2013


I cry
I sing
I grieve
I knit
I drink
I talk
I cry
I stand
I walk
I slip
I slide
I cry
I yell
I call
I talk
I search
I choose
I share

I take
I give
I ramble
I wander
I talk
I learn
I look
I hear
I see
I stay silent.

I do not fall.

For my mother.