Sunday, May 22, 2005

Traces of Think under Local Clouds

Roy Arenella's letters are often an essential element of his mailart. They are quirky, intelligent, and human. I often think that I know Roy (whom I've met just once in a rush of activity between work assignments on one putative holiday in New York City) just from his letters. What he usually does in his letters, without even knowing it, is put me to shame with his knowledge of verbo-visual and other art. Reading his letters is a learning experience.

In the letter I received this time, he talks about a series of narrative visual poems of mine called Traces of Ink and makes references to Bob Brown's 1450-1950 (which I do know), Cendrar's "jolie page," and a book by Robert Pinget (who?) that goes by the title Traces of Ink. (I wonder if Pinget created his name from the same source as I: bokuseki [trans. "Traces of Ink" or "Ink Traces"], the term for Zen brush calligraphy. And now I've given away my secret.)

In this mailing, Roy sent me his letter, sections of Pinget's Traces of Ink copied onto a single page, a list of his photographs (entitled "Local Clouds") recently shown at the 55 Mercer Gallery, a poster advertising a show of his from 1974, and this wonderful "pretty page":

Roy Arenella, "He Wanted to Make" (13 April 2005)

un violon d'ingres

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