The Pensive Image (cont.)

Hanneke Grootenboer’s text is dense and rich, very dense. I dance my way across, picking up notes here & there. Grootenboer quotes Hesse, saying:

“Chaos can be structured as non-chaos.”

— Eva Hesse

It’s a beautiful line, almost like a kōan.

Hesse also said: “Don’t ask what the work is. Rather, see what the work does” which to me is very much in line with the point Grootenboer is making in this book — as Grootenboer considers painting as a form of thinking in itself, rather than a subject of philosophical and interpretive thought.

Strangely I seem to have developed a love/hate relationship to philosophy – I love how it can open new worlds, but I do really not like the wordiness of it … how it tends to drown its own insights (insecurities?) in an overload of references – .

Lets turn to Hesse once more:

I have a confidence in my understanding of formal aesthetics and I don’t want to be aware of it or make that my problem.

Philosophy; philein sophia, meaning lover of wisdom

All this beautiful wisdom!

Still (a limit capacity for love?) I feel I have to go light on philosophy or else it will drain my energy and stop me from becoming the artist I need to become…

Eva Hesse

3 Comments Add yours

  1. bluebrightly says:

    I feel just as you do about philosophy, that it opens new worlds but too much of it is drowning in academicspeak. Hesse’s quote about seeing what the work does instead of asking what it is sums it up so well. She’s one of my favorite artists – I always wonder what she would have done had she lived longer.

    1. Sigrun says:

      Thank you for taking time to read & respond. About Hesse I wonder too – such a loss!
      Regarding writing on art I’ve approached it from a different angle this week 😅 reading Teju Cole’s BLACK PAPER (which opens with a fantastic essay on Caravaggio) and also just started Brian Dillon’s AFFINITIES. ON ART AND FASCINATION.

      1. bluebrightly says:

        Teju Cole is another person whose work I’ve liked for a long time. I need to look at Black Paper. I just took a quick look at Affinities online and it looks very interesting, thank you. I bookmarked it. 🙂

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