“It’s everything, it’s the ultimate, isn’t?”
I heard a woman answering.
Why a tattoo of a dot?
I like to draw points and dots and circles.
An Indian friend was telling me what the drawing looked like to him.
“The people of India, a dot for each person, innumerable.”
I still had a lot of work to do.
Tom Nicholson’s (1973, Melbourne) charcoal drawings are made of a thousand of dots. He uses cartoons to ‘pounce’ crushed charcoal to the wall. Only where the cartoon is perforated a dot is left on the wall. This technique was used by Renaissance fresco painters to mark their drawing or design roughly onto the wall as a first layer. Nicholson makes use of the cartoons in an experimental way: by repetition the bigger image becomes visible, or on the contrary, the cartoon image disappears in a sea of dots.
Dot-drawing is an obsessive act, an occupation that makes me feel calm and nervous at the same time. The final image, all little points together, makes my thoughts linger.
However, just a bunch of simple dots.
The appearance of a starry sky, a chaos, an order above our heads. Look up, look up. It becomes an abundance that’s too great to grasp. How the loner becomes the mass becomes the loner becomes the mass.
I got inspired by the short film by video artist Johan Grimonprez (1973, Roeselare) and neuroscientist and philosopher Raymond Tallis (1946, Liverpool). In this short film Grimonprez connects found footage with excerpts of an interview of Raymond Tallis, talking about tickling, consciousness and science.
Alluding to Descartes’ notion ‘cogito ergo sum’, Raymond Tallis says following:
“We think of the human consciousness as something inside our heads. But consciousness is, right from the beginning, something profoundly relational… The I in many ways is constructed out of We.” This means that even the inner core only exists in relation to its environment.
Another striking quote is about our believe to get the essence of things by measuring it. “Quantity doesn’t capture everything… We need to recover qualities”.
This is what Grimonprez expresses by using mainstream television broadcasts and home videos. We’ve seen it all before. The mainstream deconstructs the power of the image. The mass in which the individual disappears. The lonely astronaut traveling through space: we experience by seeing the experience. Moon, round darling of us.
I heard a man answering to the question why he’s so quiet.
“The core of everything is silent and infinite.”
Not by accident the cosmos exists of rounds and balls and dots and points and circles. And quietly they wander around. The sound of their movements inaudible, their masses reduced to shiny speckles for the human eye.
Can a dot say everything? The fullness of what a person is, how he feels, all her thoughts, the explosions in his head, her emptiness inside that takes off like a rocket, conquers undefined flying objects, crossing meteorites, gets higher and colder but burns like a bullet, explodes in space and lightens the cosmos, disappears in a desolate, teneous non-places.
To catch or not to catch the core. The plurality of the simple dot.