"Local, Supportive Community (Like This One)"

I appreciate what Michael is up to with his paper for the Art Historians of Southern California, arguing for “Hacking the Timeline” in order to widen the scope of women artists’ role in art history. And I also appreciate what Kate Johnson is doing in this mode as well with her documentary, “A Dancer’s Journey,” which will air November 20 in LA on PBS and nationwide on PBS in 2015 (schedule to come).  One of the concrete things I learned while working on my recent performance “What’s on [My] Mind?” is how hard we have to fight for our story to make it into “History.” And it IS a fight — often, frankly, a war — that determines whose names will be remembered by the generations to follow.

Obviously, “History” can’t memorialize every single person’s name. That’s God’s/the Internet’s job. We are merely human, or, we are humans merely being , as e.e. cummings implies in his sonnet, “i thank you god….” Except that as artists, I suspect that we are not content with “merely being”; I suspect we feel compelled to contribute to that which is “natural which is infinite which is yes”; otherwise, why would we struggle so hard to find funding, to find audiences, to find our next moves. The desire to create is a force that gives us meaning, just as war is a force that gives us meaning.  So I truly agree with Vaneeesa and what she said during our hangout today about the fundamental importance of communities such as this one.  Being here with y’all and hanging out on Google+ once a month makes my being here in the “gay
great happening ilimitably earth” (cummings again) infinitely richer, one day at a time, and I thank you all.

 

i thank You God for most this amazing
day: for the leaping greenly spirits of trees
and a blue dream of sky;and for everything
which is natural which is infinite which is yes

(i who have died am alive again today,
and this is the sun’s birthday;this is the birth
day of life and love and wings;and of the gay
great happening ilimitably earth)

how should tasting touching hearing seeing
breathing any – lifted from the no
of all nothing – human merely being
doubt unimaginable You?

(now the ears of my ears awake and
now the eyes of my eyes are opened)

e.e. cummings, from 100 Selected Poems