OK, what do you do?
You don’t live in London any more.
So, what’s on my doorstep, round the corner, on the horizon?
It’s Romantic, New Age, holiday snap, tourist tat but it’s also quotidian, natural and normal, it’s my world, what’s real.
Unemployed, working in a shop or a school, this is the walk home from the bus. Embedded in this deep history, forgotten culture — industrial ruins and iron age homesteads, stone age monuments and microwave masts, hard farmed fields and high rough ground.
The Modern is made in cities and factories but so was this computer and my high tech bike, so was the tractor that just roared past and the helicopter that roared overhead … but we don’t all live there … we just use this shit to make our lives.
Are we as exotic to Shoreditch hipsters or city bankers as an African “witch doctor” was to Picasso or Breton?
I guess all you can do is just use the tools to hand (and mind) to share what it feels like being alive.
Oh … it’s Chûn Quoit. You trip over these things every day here — like a school gym in the 60’s.
The funny thing is I was thinking about Patrick Caulfield’s Parish Church and I was sure it was set in a purple field — it was one of the first paintings I fell in love with — but it’s actually all turquoisey greys … ach, to not be colour blind.
The solar system at play. The sky’s now dazzling cerulean but the sea fog just earlier meant we could enjoy it naked — eyes that is — “Ancient Spiritual Landscape” and all that crap but we aren’t all crustie mothers — real coffee and hot showers … oh, and an internet connection.
… of course it’s not — we stalked across the field … not sure what we could see — if it was a bird on a post; it was huge, vast, frightening … but it didn’t move … at all.
Perhaps it was just a dead, twisted remnant of gorse.
And then it did, of course, as we got too near.
It was a buzzard.
When it took flight and dipped and swooped to the nearest but safe vantage point, it diminished — it was still large … but quantifiable, conforming, believable.
And it left behind its shit. Accumulated crap. An archival ossuary.
And a beautiful still life.
Depressed and distressed but disenchanted and disenfranchised by politics and the reporting thereof … and then, in one of of those strange serendipitous moments, I’d just seen Cézanne’s Onions in a book and moments later was captivated by the flickering, raking winter sunlight setting the onions in the kitchen aglow, like jewels … and thought: why not? Or even: how could you not?
Hmmm … but something must have gone wrong somewhere.
I was after simplicity, beauty, serenity, honesty, even a sort of Van Gogh, onions and red cabbage, earthiness … and N saw something menacing, threatening.
Back to the drawing board … or not — maybe we’re both right.
Three of the Nine Maidens at Boskednan … Carn Galva in the background.
There are actually eleven stones, two are fallen. Their even spacing suggests that the site was originally laid out as a perfect circle, about 22 metres in diameter, made up of 22 or 23 stones with smooth inner faces.
Actually the iconic Greenburrow engine house at the western end of Ding Dong mine.
Reputed to be the oldest mine in Cornwall and around here they say it has been worked since before Christ.
Perhaps … but it was definitely where Richard Trevithick, the great mining engineer, pioneered high pressure steam in 1797.