Emily, Memory

Friday, January 21st, 2005 | Art, Friends

Last night I and BC and Léonie went to hear Emily speak about her work in Oakland, at the gallery where she’s showing with 3 other artists. I was intrigued by the surreal drawings of one other artist in the show, but had to forget everything she said during her talk, as she seemed to have no insight into what her work was doing or saying. Emily, however, was great, not telling people how to read her work, but guiding them into it, and giving details about her process, which is not only interesting, but key to understanding what she’s up to. She’s one of the most inventive and imaginative artists around. Her work is fragile, ephemeral and hard to display, and the show closes tomorrow, so if you’re looking for something to do this afternoon or tomorrow, get on over to The Oakland Art Gallery, 199 Kahn’s Alley, in Oakland.

Afterwards we had dinner at Bucci’s, which I think was in Emeryville. Those cities all run together over there. BC brought up an interesting question, about memory, that has had me bothered and excited since. He asked what is the oldest memory? If we think of memory solely in biological terms, that is, experiences contained in living beings, there is a limit to our access to direct experience. Time passes, people die, memories are lost. Memories are passed into books, photos, art, etc… but somewhere out there is someone who remembers something that he or she experienced, and there’s no one else on earth with access to the experience of that time. This thought is gnawing at me the way the idea of space being infinite bugged me in third grade.

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