[NetBehaviour] The Eternal Exercise And A Comment

Alan Sondheim sondheim at gmail.com
Wed May 5 23:42:15 CEST 2021

Hi Annie,
It's a practice that keeps me focused; I have what I call 'waves' of
content that flow through the sections - for example analog/digital
phenomenology / gamespace/edgespace/blankspace / splatter semiotics / etc.
It's like meditation; I learn from the practice and honestly have done this
most of my life. Early on I was also influenced by Delta Blues music (and
was at times close to people like Al Wilson through whom I met Son House
etc.) - and I soon was listening to 60s-70s free jazz (people like Albert
Ayler, Archie Schepp, John Coltrane, and so many others) - and almost all
the musicians I know practice/play/think/produce/ etc. every day - it's I
think a different way of working, I have to keep re-inventing myself in a
sense, but also paying close attention to what I think might be valuable or
somehow true at times, and then question those underpinnings. There are
diarists like Viktor Klemperer and Kierkegaard who have also influenced me
- daily writing... And from people like Kristeva and Irigaray I was also
inspired to think more about embodied art, which is daily practice; most of
the artists I knew early on like Vito Acconci, Rosemary Mayer, Bernadette
Mayer, and so forth were also constantly producing. It's somewhat of a work
ethic I think as well.  --
Hope this answers somewhat and thanks for asking!
Best, Alan

On Wed, May 5, 2021 at 5:24 PM Annie Abrahams via NetBehaviour <
netbehaviour at lists.netbehaviour.org> wrote:

> May  l ask Alan
> What was the reason for starting to produce work at a daily rate?
> Best
> Le mer. 5 mai 2021 à 22:23, Alan Sondheim <sondheim at panix.com> a écrit :
>> The Eternal Exercise And A Comment
>> http://www.alansondheim.org/gonedays.jpg
>> What am I hearing it might be God
>> fearing the stallion is rearing
>> the forest is dead where am I
>> going the sky's blowing red the
>> people are ready the horses are
>> fed where have I been in this town
>> of grey sin in this town where the
>> weather's unpinned where the
>> horses are in where the stallion
>> is ready where the horses are
>> rearing and the forest is dead.
>> Sometimes there's chasm a sight of
>> a plasm where's the flesh isn't
>> messed and the samples go lie and
>> this sky is darkling and the
>> plasm's a storm that always means
>> harm and the cyto is psycho and
>> the horses are no go and the
>> horses are carrying bodies in
>> babies up to the sky up into the
>> sky. What am I seeing it might be
>> gone fleeing the stallion is
>> winning the forest is gone where
>> am I going the wind is no more the
>> people steady to go down to the
>> Weir. Where is the Weir where the
>> canal was flying into the sky with
>> the horses and chasm where is this
>> site have the people who light
>> down by the forest for the trees
>> are all burning and the horses are
>> churning in this dream by the
>> river in the river by brook in the
>> fountain in in the sea in the sea
>> in the ocean in the lake of the
>> ocean in the lake of the ocean
>> where the horses lies sleeping and
>> people are weeping at parties in
>> babies are up in the sky and
>> falling and sweeping the seeds of
>> the rye and the wheat that
>> surrounds us and the lost people
>> hound us where the horses are
>> tossed and nothing is left but a
>> weir way down there where the
>> people in steeples steeples learn
>> how to fear when they go down in
>> the forest and the ocean is messed
>> and the horses are blessed hands
>> up in the sky the lake of the
>> ocean is a sound of the cry from
>> the horses and bodies and babies
>> who fly.
>> I've been thinking more and more about this process of creating
>> daily new work; I've been doing this for 27 years now in a row.
>> It's been a scaffolding but it's also been a source of anxiety
>> since it's difficult to come up with something new on a daily
>> basis; for all I know I may be repeating myself incessantly. The
>> result, combined with covid, is an out of control anxiety. Part
>> of this is a fundamental lack of community here in Providence,
>> which has been going on for almost eight years; part of it is a
>> real lack of funding, which in my (equal lack of a) profession
>> results in an inability to carry out the work I want to; as you
>> know - I was adding this all up today - for the first time, I
>> have no real adequate still or video camera for production, and
>> no chance of getting these (I've always worked otherwise, with
>> good equipment, since 1969 or so) - so there's no VR or AR work
>> coming from my end, no potential collaborations at this point.
>> The last actual grant I had was something like fifteen years ago
>> which gave us tools to work in West Virginia at the Virtual
>> Environment Lab. Since then, there's been no funding, which sends
>> me constantly back to things like linux, work with acoustic
>> instruments, text manipulation programs and the like. (Medicines
>> cost for example.) If anyone has any ideas at this point, please
>> let me know; I'm certainly not going to be getting any other
>> grants or faculty positions or stipends etc. I'm constantly
>> trying, even now, to get a book out, based on my production and
>> theory-work (such as it is), but I think I carry the stink of
>> failure around with me that undermines everything. At least we
>> owe no one any money, and I keep going at this absurd and
>> somewhat baleful task of continuous production.
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