artmaking & myth

“Poetry happens when short-circuits of sense occur between words, a sudden regeneration of the primeval myths. . . . Not one scrap of an idea of ours does not originate in myth, isn’t transformed, mutilated, denatured mythology. The most fundamental function of the spirit is inventing fables, creating tales. . . . [T]he building materials [that the search for human knowledge] uses were used once before; they come from forgotten, fragmented tales or “histories.” Poetry recognizes these lost meanings, restores words to their places, connects them by the old semantics.”

– Bruno Schulz, “The Mythologizing of Reality,” in Letters and Drawings
(from Wood s Lot with thanks)

Substitute the word “art” for “poetry” (of course poetry is art ) and this quote becomes a kind of statement of my feelings about my art-making. It is somewhat similar in concept to this quote that is part of my artist statement for the TRACES exhibition held in Finland in 2002:

“Telling a story is a kind of prayer, a kind of meditation, a sacred act. It makes magic happen. Or is the story itself the magic?” – Erica Jong, “Inventing Memory”

August 18, 2004 in Concepts by Marja-Leena