Monday, October 31, 2011

Lake Erie Ramblings

I was going to write about Nan Goldin’s new exhibition at Matthew Marks this week but I was only able to see it for a brief time and the slide/audio show for only a few minutes and this is just not enough time to do it justice so it will have to be next week. Apologies. I am already apologizing because now you will have to suffer reading my unfocused rambling (more than usual). These particular ramblings are set at Lake Erie, where I have spent the last few days. You have been warned; you can click off from this point, as what is to follow is a real piñata of my dehydrated mind.

Briefly On Nature and the Visual Experience: When walking in the woods, (not a neat path in the woods), one must always look down. Looking down is required so that one does not fall or misstep. On occasion, one must look up to see what is coming ahead in the near future in regards to terrain and to avoid any branches, protrusions, animals and other human beings. The scope of sight is very focused and is 80% focused within 1-5 feet, 15% within 5-20 feet and 5% to the full extent of visibility. Because of this acute focus there is no time to look out and contemplate on what is around unless one purposefully stops. This may be why most people who partake in hiking and walking in the woods have a goal to reach; a top, a vista, or a certain spot that is considered the best visual field. This is in contrast to a setting like a beach or a meadow or another similar place that is more flat and the typography is more even. This allows for less focus on the immediate visual range and more to the horizon. This can result in a more contemplative experience with nature, as the focus is more circumferential then it is pointed. The passivity of the eye can be seen in both unstable nature and stable nature. The psychology of the person within that terrain is in the end the most influential factor of the visual cognizance of any given natural space. The elements as sound, temperature, precipitation and other factors that effect the physical experience can have much if not total dominance over the visual experience.

Briefly On Quaint Towns: The idealization of a small town in the United States is due to the need for authenticity that can be sometimes found in nostalgia. The ideal town consists of a Main Street and off that street are various businesses and community buildings that are the primary meeting places for the town. This town refers to a period of America that dates from 1940-1970, the architecture is a third incarnation of the Victorian style but its construction is prefab and it is made of almost all synthetic materials. Those that participate in reconstructing a small town in this manner are 99% white and are from incomes that range between $30,000 - $150,000 per household. Both the very poor and the very wealthy do not have impulse or desire to be apart of this idealized town. This may be due to the lack of the need to search for a nostalgic authenticity as both the poor and rich have other forms of this realized authenticity. Towns that are constructed from scratch to resemble this referred town will not flourish past 30 years. Towns that have a history and are re-built or expended upon can possibly last through multiple generations.

Briefly On Pie: There is place located in Westfield New York that makes the most superb, the most perfect, the most delicious pies ever to be made. They are called Portage Pie, named after the street in which their modest shop is located. This statement is not partial, as in truth, this writer does not even like pies very much. These pies are made by a woman named Connie and her husband, whose name is not known to writer. They have large sized pies and also small pies. Each pie is perfectly delicious because it accentuates the flavor of the filling, be it fruit, such as; apple, concord grape, peach, sour cherry or more cream based. Each flavor is perfectly clear on the palate yet never overly sugary. The crust is consistently moist, flaky and gently salted. This more savory crust highlights the pie fillings’ natural sweetness or tart. The pies are very economically priced and can last up to a week on the shelf. They should not be refrigerated. Also, the bakers pick the fruit seasonally from local farmers but not in a highfalutin way. This writer is not a dessert enthusiast nor has a sweet tooth but when something is perfectly made, as these pies are, they transcend being an edible treat but a form of art. These are the most perfect pies one can eat, if you happen to ever be in or pass near Westfield New York it would be derelict to not sample one or many of these delicious pies.