Sunday, January 14, 2007

more about nina

i ended up talking at some length tonight about that nina simone video. I mean, WTF? when you hear me ranting and raving about the failure of art education and art generally, think about that video. I think all of us spend most of our lives confined to personalities that are merely defined by what we are not, by other peoples' personalities, by limitations that we have created for ourselves. (cheers again to gusky). oddly, at least today, i think these photographs (above) are starting to feel like they are about that, the tangled web we weave when we prop ourselves up to witness the spectactle that we make of ourselves. yet, so obviously... so obvious it comes through on you-tube three decades later, when we witness someone who is totally and utterly in and of themselves, defined only by themselves, then suddenly we see not only our own fragile failure. We try then also to emulate that person.

Simone is a well known failure in so many ways, and she is still a startling voice. A searingly painful honesty tears out of her as if it is the first cry of a profoundly human awareness. It is intellect that is ego-centric, and overwhelmingly emotional and feeling centered. Her voice knows and conveys more than concept, more than the lost conceptualism of words. I feel when her voice has reached me that she has smashed the isolated barriers of meaning and rushes through me like an intelligence. It is so much more interesting to me than, well, a lot of other things, like for example, having some dumb idea and then calling it a concept.

1 comment:

  1. I found that link the other day as well and have been thinking of her for days. I also have been wondering how to emulate that honesty in art (or anything). I think that sort of confidence and centeredness comes from being completely IN the moment. And when she says "feed me, feed me" to the audience it is an aknowledgement or realization of the fact that yes I am me (ego) in a field of egos that are in the same act of creation. Everyone is present (the songwriter too) all have a role, all are up for scrutiny.

    Is it a matter of leaving things open to failure or presenting failure ITSELF as the thing?

    SO was she looking at this material (the song) and considering it in terms of a process? I mean she is fully in the act of discovery ON STAGE. There is no rehashing of rehearsed activity. Perhaps thats a way on untangling the web, thru thinking and FEELING your way around each strand.

    Mark Creegan