(in)between: the contemplative practices of making & viewing art
there are spaces.
There are spaces in our breathing, that moment when we get to the top of an inhale, just before we begin to exhale. A slight pause. Almost unnoticeable. And again, at the bottom of the exhale.
There are spaces in-between our thoughts, when our mind is still and free and clear and open.
There are spaces in-between objects that hold as much meaning as the objects themselves.
There is a practice called “holding the space” where we learn to recognize these voids & pauses, where we learn to invite them and create them and in doing so, allow mysteries to unfold.
There are spaces in the act of making art.
An artist thinks, researches, writes, experiments.
So much activity.
And then, a space.
A brief pause.
Sometimes so brief as to be almost unnoticeable.
It is in the seemingly ceaseless movement, the struggle, the tension, what feels like endless thinking, that the space is created.
In a moment’s pause, a contemplative practice.
The work takes form.
It is in the same pause that we find meaning in viewing the work.
We look at art.
We think about art.
We talk about art.
We contemplate art and we write about art.
Again, creating that constant movement.
And it is only in that movement, that stillness can happen.
Perhaps it is at the bottom of an exhale, or a jump from one thought to the next. The rational mind lets go. The thinking. The analyzing. The work simply exists and the spaces in-between take form and hold meaning. It is then with no words, or at least at the exhaustion of trying all words, that we come closest to understanding best.
It is in-between the making and the viewing, in-between the talking and the thinking, that we take one-step closer, to knowing.