In two hours we’ll take the shuttle to Newark and then fly to Ottawa. It’s a beautiful Manhatten morning, the sky blue and the buildings rosy with sunlight. It’s been a very full five days with long walks, interesting music (the Attacca Quartet playing John Adams the other night — I loved “John’s Book of Alleged Dances”, esp. the Pavane, “She’s so Fine” — and Mason Jennings and Charlie Mars at the City Winery), delicious food (including a vegan meal at Blossom with JP and Karin)…
Yesterday we intended to take a boat tour of the Harbo(u)r but the line-ups were daunting (Spring Break…) so instead we found ourselves at the Smithsonian National Museum of the American Indian.
There was an exhibit at the Museum which I’m still thinking about, “house of memory”, by C. Maxx Stevens. She used found materials — horse hair, old photographs, garden stakes, dress patterns, etc. — to explore how our memory of time and place is composed and sustained.
I particularly admired a piece called “Three Graces” — three images of wood and objects, like inverted nests or small shelters, representing the artist and her sisters. Certain elements — photographs, braids of horsehair — were almost totemic. The whole exhibit made me want to make things, to gather materials together and try to build my own memory houses. Enough of this gallivanting around cities!