Participants and materials
— A Cat from Paris on Bianca Sforni’s computer, photo by Bianca
— The Moon, scientific image from Michal C. McMillen’s archive
— The Owl and the Pussy-Cat, poem by Edward Lear 1812-1888
from Michael C. McMillen remembrance of his grandmother reading it to him.
— The White Owl from my search of a title for a book about LA artists;
— Hannah Kirby with open hand holding the fire.
Introduction by Rosanna Albertini
Three friends are surfing the waves of distance. “There is a great deal of nonsense talked about the subject of anything,” said Gertrude Stein. In their hearts there is no distance at all nor an ocean or a hill: they see the same things since the beginning of time and after all they are pleased to be on the same wave without having to measure the distance, no need to count the money to cover the distance, either.
Black circles the cat’s eyes and turns around the moon.
One two three the white light removes them from the chair of identity. Pages flew away like magic carpets. The black and white remains clear in the written words but fades into the infinite grays of the images. A perfectly white camelia blooms the day of my birthday, pure whiteness still uncontaminated like the days in their undisclosed bud.
This is a black and white song repeating with Jon Batiste: “What a wonderful world” please don’t forget it. This is a song of silence for the contagious nonsense that is killing hope and joy and beauty all around the world. Like Torch Song, Alison’s Saar sculpture that wears a black and white keyboard like a vest of bullets and holds a burning torch in her right hand, I wear my pearls asking them to bloom flowers of light, and give them to the white owl to fight the darkness and announce a new year: a new, joyful, wonderful year.
THE OWL AND THE PUSSI-CAT
BY EDWARD LEAR
The Owl and the Pussy-Cat went to sea
In a beautiful pea-green boat:
They took some honey, and plenty of money
Wrapped up in a five-pound note.
The Owl looked up to the starts above,
And sang to a small guitar,
“O lovely Pussy, O Pussy, my love,
What a beautiful Pussy you are,
Pussy said to the Owl, “You elegant fowl,
How charmingly sweet you sing!
Oh! let us be married; too long we have tarried.
But what shall we do for a ring?”
They sailed away, for a year and a day,
To the land where the bong-tree grows;
And there in a wood a Piggy-wig stood,
With a ring at he end of his nose,
With a ring at the end of his nose.
“Dear Pig, are you willing to sell for one shilling
Your ring?” Said the Piggy, “I will,”
So they took it away, and were married next day
By the turkey who lives on the hill.
They dined on mince and slices of quince,
Which they ate with a runcible spoon;
And hand in hand, on the edge of the sand,
They danced by the light of the moon,
The moon, The moon,
They danced by the light of the moon.