On April 11, 2020, people who are close to me were asked to meet and bring some reference to their fears, expectations and/or dreams related to the isolation and to a possible world post isolation. The text by Latour that has come to my attention many times in these last weeks, first translated by Déborah Danowski and Viveiros de Castro, and then as other versions in several other languages, was an intellectual inspiration to want to talk about what will happen to us in the near future. The two books by Marc Augé (The Future, 2015) and Arjun Appadurai (The Future as Cultural Fact, 2013) were also important to understand that to talk about the future does not belong to the realms of the untouchable, esoteric, imaginative speculation only. In the opposite, as Futureless Languages (by Cynthia Arrieu-King, 2018) shows us, the future is the present of, and in, a larger picture.
This does not fit well into the category of work (meaning labor) – but it fits completely to the category of game…
So my proposition to meet dear people on an e-party was:
There is this tale that while Lord Vishnu dreamed our world was created from his belly.
Thinking of this extraordinary situation the world is in, right now, the game we will play considers our wishes and dreams for the world in a post isolation era.
Please, prepare a small contribution: a picture, a short concept, a sentence, a haiku, a question, a dream… you may search for inspiration in your expectations, fears, doubts, motivations, for the time when we all leave isolation. This contribution will be shared during the party (if you want to play but won’t be able to connect, send me your media per email).
To guide you, please accept my suggestion that each of us will be part of one of the five groups according to our family names:
Names from A to D
Group 1: I can see
Anything related to an amazing world for the eyes. Seeing, perceive, imagine, shape, colors, movements, written word…
Names from E to I
Group 2: I can hear
Anything related to an amazing world for the ears. Sounds, noises, paying attention, spoken word, pace, time, information…
Names from J to N
Group 3: I feel tastes
Anything related to an amazing world be for the tongue. Tastes, appetite, food, drinks, nutrition…
Names from O to S
Group 4: I feel the touch
Anything related to an amazing world for the skin. Textures, temperature, pressure, pleasure…
Names from T to Z
Group 5: I feel smells
Anything related to an amazing world for the nose. Fragrances, memory, timelessness, intimacy…
If you are in group one, for instance, you do not need to make a picture, be creative, be fun, be free, be synestesic if you wish.
HERE some of the inputs shared during the game-party. (still being updated)
Group 1: I can see
A new Instagram account of Kenny, the cat, for the occasion of April 11.
“Espero que la pases bien. Depois me fala como foi o jogo. […] Ah eh. Mando uma fotinho que achei e gosto.”
“I wish we will have learned to look at the world from all angles and that a shift in perspective can occur.” Corinna is scanning objects and outputting them as images.
Brought the scene, from the film Kirikou and the Sorceress (French: Kirikou et la Sorcière), 1998, by Michel Ocelot, when the sorceress is recognized as in need of healing and not just as evil.
“I’m sending you the picture of the (new) Parliament House in Canberra, contrast between the smokey sky experience of December/January, and the ferocious hail storm (which caused heaps of damage in Canberra, including to the Uni, the art school and my townhouse complex – pretty much the centre of Canberra). We were at home and I have never experienced anything like this.”
Group 2: I hear
Tudo entre Céu e Terra Transborda (all between heaven and earth goes overboard) – about the sounds when Earth and Heaven rub against each other…
Se eu fosse eu de Clarice Lispector:
“Quando eu não sei onde guardei um papel importante e a procura revela-se inútil, pergunto-me: se eu fosse eu e tivesse um papel importante para guardar, que lugar escolheria?
Às vezes dá certo. Mas muitas vezes fico tão pressionada pela frase “se eu fosse eu”, que a procura do papel se torna secundária, e começo a pensar, diria melhor SENTIR.
E não me sinto bem.
Experimente: se você fosse você, como seria e o que faria?
Logo de início se sente um constrangimento: a mentira em que nos acomodamos acabou de ser movida do lugar onde se acomodara. No entanto já li biografias de pessoas que de repente passavam a ser elas mesmas e mudavam inteiramente de vida. Acho que se eu fosse realmente eu, os amigos não me cumprimentariam na rua, porque até minha fisionomia teria mudado. Como? Não sei.
Metade das coisas que eu faria se eu fosse eu, não posso contar. Acho por exemplo, que por um certo motivo eu terminaria presa na cadeia. E se eu fosse eu daria tudo que é meu e confiaria o futuro ao futuro.
Se eu fosse eu parece representar o nosso maior perigo de viver, parece a entrada nova no desconhecido. No entanto tenho a intuição de que, passadas as primeiras chamadas loucuras da festa que seria, teríamos enfim a experiência do mundo. Bem sei, experimentaríamos emfim em pleno a dor do mundo. E a nossa dor aquela que aprendemos a não sentir. Mas também seríamos por vezes tomados de um êxtase de alegria pura e legítima que mal posso adivinhar. Não, acho que já estou de algum modo adivinhando, porque me senti sorrindo e também senti uma espécie de pudor que se tem diante do que é grande demais. Acho que o momento da quarentena está bem pertinente pra perguntarmos ‘e se eu fosse eu… o que eu faria?'”
Wrapped a film by Roman Kaelin, Falko Paeper, Florian Wittmann. Wrapped from Crave on Vimeo.
About the sound instruments:
“The blue and yellow one is called Strapattar. The red and green one is called Flatrap.”
Atlanta-based bricoleur A.H., known to friends as Ed Hall, assembles found objects, donated stuff, discarded packaging, and so forth into sculpture and musical instruments; he calls the instruments, collectively, perjunction—percussion instruments made from junk. He encourages others to do likewise.
Kariri children whistle toy, from the São Francisco region in Brazil: Alagoas, Bahia, Pernambuco (desert) + Ceará.
Recording of the black birds in London, as they have conversations among themselves.
Group 3: I feel tastes
“i imagined that after the isolation time, i’d like to lick everything with my tongue. i read about a bat, which has a very long tongue to drink the nectar from the flowers. i’d have also an unsually long tongue, and would just feel and taste anything with it, not only edible things, but stones, the streets, soil, the air,…, just any kind of material. it would be a way to get in touch with my surroundings, with the world.”
Thinking how Amigo, the cat, needed time to understand what “grass” was, after spending his whole life in an apartment.
A real fresh mango – Lang is isolated in the city of Bogotá, so to go shopping and get some fresh fruits, that reminds her of nature, and being able to come and go is a struggle, the mango is this link to nature, she wanted to share in the game.
“O que eu tinha preparado era um brownie de chocolate, sem farinha, sem manteiga, sem leite …feito com batata doce e farinha de amêndoas”
Frothing my moist lips
Straight from Weisse Taube’s Fass
As you probably know, “Weisse Taube” means “White Pigeon” (or “Dove,” but seeing that it’s kind of a dive bar I’ll go with “Pigeon”) and is the name of my favorite watering hole.
“Fass” is the German word for “keg,” and “Memminger Keller” is quite simply the beer I always order there: An opaque pilsner.
“Memminger” is the brewery, and “Keller” is the type of beer (Kellerbier).
In the photo you see two samples separated by a wheat beer in the middle (not a draft beer, but poured from the bottle).
Group 4: I feel the touch.
Brought one of the books of the Cream Art Collection. A book to touch.
“Pode ser ingenuidade. Mas apesar de ser extremamente desconfiada sempre fui otimista em relação à índole humana. Então espero que em alguns anos, a relação com a terra seja mais direta. As nossas mãos e nossos pés vão ter pele mais firme, grossa, resistente. A cor um pouco mais escura, a temperatura mais quente. O rosto e axilas suados. O dia percebido pelas funções da terra e o que ela nos fornece. Os mistérios à noite. O medo, concreto. Os frutos, contínuos.”
Rochyne Delaney McNulty
Talked about The giant sculpture in Leeds, that could touch and bring one to the floor, lays there on the floor, implying that to lay on the floor may be the best way to withstand isolation. The intuition suggests we should rest on the floor.
(info from the BBC UK web site)
From Saragosa on Vimeo. Jimmy ASMR short clip from J.
Described how it was to go back home after some time abroad and to have to self isolate for two weeks before hugging her family and the dogs. Her hopes for a post isolation world is that we have body contact to people we love, that self distancing will not be the new norm.
“Just you, Marcia, to get me drawing…”
Group 5: I feel smells
When I cut green bell peppers I feel the smell of the storms, as the rain would fall, in the end of the summer days in Brazil, when I was a child. Later, I understood that this smell of rain has a name, it is called petrichor. For a future world, the set ups that need to be urban, the cities made mostly out of concrete and asphalt, that they should all be planted with elder flower bushes, so we can taste and smell the summers of the 1990s forever.
Many more guests were present, brought insights of how they feel the isolation. BUT what about the six senses, if you listed 5? As a representative of Ether or the fabric of Time-Space, I invited Murilo Guimarães, who is a political scientist and a great player of Tarot, to lay cards, with the questions:
What is this new world we are creating?
How do we make it?
What are the paradoxes we need to be aware of?
Here the answers: