Friday, November 12, 2004

Wegway, and A Taste of Vermont

A spy has brought to my attention an intriguing publication entitled Wegway: The Magazine of Primary Culture:

Wegway is an artists' magazine published twice a year in the Spring and Fall. Artists and other culture producers often want to publish things that don't fit into the formats of most art and literary magazines. Wegway provides print access for these unique and important projects.

There are no restrictions on content - Wegway is free and wide open. It is a venue for artists and all culture-producers to say or do whatever they want.

Wegway gives artists direct media access - their ideas are not filtered through the prose of professional critics and interpreters. This is an art magazine that doesn't review shows; we don't have an at-the-galleries section. What you'll find instead, is painters, sculptors, curators, composers, poets, photographers, filmmakers, architects, designers, choreographers, multi-media artists, comic artists and other primary culture producers presenting their own work and expressing their own views. This is not the place for secondary literature.

The images on the preview page are especially intriguing.


Two nights ago he stood on some anonymous and foggy shore watching whales. I kid you not; it was a beautiful thing. Strange mixture of memories from Alaska fishing and indulgent pleasure of the imagination. They entered a bay and then left by way of a rocky point. The last one even (of course!)hovering its tail for one long, impossible, balancing moment - that most nostalgic of Nature's gestures. Slow, surreal, majestic, and almost touchable. The memories are based somewhat in reality: on more than several occasions were we surrounded by whales as we set the net for salmon. Sometimes they surface within mere meters, and all one can say to one's crewmates after such moments, and with shining eyes, is the happy and fatigued refrain, "Hey, it's not a job; it's an adventure."

At other times, we were scared. Whales, needless to say, can easily ruin a season of fishing, leaving a house-sized hole in the sein. Or if, heaven forbid, they were to get tangled and dive... in short, a whale sighting when the net is out is ample justification to reach for one's knife. We are happy to let the salmon circle back out, opening the net and losing an hour of the day. They have been granted a free pass by the roaming Gods of the sea.

Later, the dream takes a more bizarre and ominous turn. A passage, 30 miles, from the relative protection of the island to the open coast of the mainland. For some reason the conservative skipper wears a red fedora. An uncharacteristic, crazed look in his eyes. We are beset by enormous, slow rollers, inexplicably moving backwards from the high cliffs of the coast toward the open ocean. There is something in the sky, very large, menacing and mythical. Perhaps a giant squid. The look on his skipper's face is now saying, quite clearly, and in that dug-in way that only decades and generations of experience can muster; "Well, we may be out of our league here." A certain rather touching humility his skipper seems to have acquired after the age of 55; a fragility and letting go of ancient pride. Perhaps the old world, of movies, men and myths, is simply too far gone now. It is a look attentive and resigned at once, purely in preparation for the moment when the only words worth uttering are a curse.

A Taste of Vermont

The woman next to him gave an exceptionally warm hello before she sat down. She is wearing some sort of traditional African dress. He sits in an adorable library at a place called The School for International Training. Wisps of snow almost blowing onto the computer screen through the windows. It is said there are only two Republican students here, both of them are on full scholarship. The word, "quaint" does come to mind, but there are certainly worse things. One of these days he must finish Moby Dick. Maybe after Counterpath:

The problematic of the approach to the other is inseparable from the logic of the pas, which has to be understood in two ways: the pas as noun relating to passage (step, advance), and the pas of negation. Both signal toward the act of crossing a border and at the same time the impossibility of passage. The sense of the formula, "step not beyond" [pas au-dela] or what "goes for a certain pas"] is therefore undecidable. The step-not toward the other doesn't find its place.
(Catherine Malabou, Counterpath, 168)

No comments: