A. B. Clarke

Month: February, 2019

Painting Pictures of Mankind

by abclarke

There are three types of people in the world: Jasper Johns, Monets, and Vermeers.

From a distance the Jasper Johns are all fucked up. Get near them, and they are still fucked up. And get really up close, get into their space, and you’ll see, yes, still fucked up.

Monets, from a distance, have it all together. But get near them, become their casual friend, and you’ll see clearly how messed up they are. And really up close, it’s madness.

And Vermeers? Well, from a distance they have it all together. Get close, and they are still all together. But get up really close, become their lover, and you’ll see the crazy. The harrying of the brush-strokes. The mad war where greens meet yellows. The peaks and valleys of the oils clumping on the fabric of their canvas. Perhaps controlled insanity? But insanity none the less.

In intimate closeness, they are all maniae. Yet this is not all they share.

No.

Each is viewed but through a frame, that if we lift and look beyond we see the paint fade off. Vermeer’s kitchen fading to the nothing house. Monet’s Japanese bridge to nowhere. John’s paint splotch that just stops, ends. And in this nothing, we find everything: The painter is there; The brushes are there; The wheat and the chaff; The flowers and the roads; Even the abstract, the numbers and concepts. They all live beyond the wooden box of our constraints. The frames are just a view we impose upon them.

There are three types of people in the world: Jasper Johns, Monets, and Vermeers. They are all beautiful.

Knowing Joy

by abclarke

Knowing no knowing knows the now.

The Plan v. The Goal

by abclarke

Do not mourn discarded plans to ride your camel a thousand miles to reach Mecca, once you know you must climb Chomolungma instead.

The plan is not the goal.
The plan was never the goal.
The goal was the goal.

If the goal changes,
No matter how good the plan,
Change the plan.

So rejoice, grab your mule and climb your mountain.
Reaching the goal is your reward.
It matters not whether you wade through camel shit or mule shit to get there.