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Foundations
by Steve Dalachinsky


foundation 1 (morandi)

who will preserve space /
the fullness of emptiness –
 valid question?

the flame of the shell / a warning of roses
a kind of soupy meld        within
the intentional  near unseen warp
to conserve the dust & then know how to use it

is this line solid / are we all
part of this ingenious self-portrait?
this still life that moves
with or without us
despite the movement of others
despite the movement around it 
                        / ? \ |}

regardless of the movement of others
despite the seeming freedom of   but not from
placement –  but what is fascism?
the ability to control this accumulated dust? 

a portrait of a still-life  framed by a fireplace
               brick faced  residing in a black
                           rectangular box
supported by a ledge of immediate undertones
           though the urgency of these forms
                  never assaults our vision
                               but rather
                    subverts   &  subdues
                                      it

what do painting & politics amount to?
          real size ???    real  color???
                       if anything
                            from
which to what to which or what
     is the true transformation?
suspended above a glass-tabled floor
             the frame @ times
           a bourgeois addition
to the historical problems of crisis

are these compact(ed) objects:
milk? facsimile?
crisis? freedom?
bourgeois?  synthesis?
anything? everything? nothing?
solid?  liquid?  ephemeral?
rich?  poor? illusion?
human?  sacred?  fiction?
dream(s)?
useful daily   favorite daily
soup receptacles?
imagined reliquaries?
coffee?
tea?
aesthetic vehicles
filled with emptiness
faded by loneliness?
learned & discarded behaviors?
studies of studies?
the instability of war?
3 sisters & a mother?
headache & arousal?
fallacy or
phallus de-emphasized?

time is at rest
the clock with its back
toward the viewer
always refusing to reveal
itself

she quotes the critics: it’s about
“a feeling of demonic vitality”    as he
“attacks the objects in order to dissolve them”
exploit them
tells us “morandi is just morandi”

&  as we decompress 
fade & melt with the paintings
dark shadows flow & fill the space
& as the tour reaches its climax
she gives the painter the last word >

“finally only a white bottle remains.”

foundation 2 (compact:)

closely & firmly packed / together / a small cosmetic case usually containing face powder & a mirror / to make by putting together

i want to tell the brown skinned man talking to himself on the train that no matter how much he rub the “flesh” tone “pow(d)er on his face & hands he will never change his color. his varied hues blend like a morandi. he talks & talks while nervously  dabbing the powder puff around in its octagonal case then massively applies makeup to every inch of his face. lips, eyes. give up, i want to tell him, you are crazy to think this transformation will occur & besides you are beautiful the way you are. he keeps dialoguing with someone in his head who may or may not be responding. like he was on a cell phone. he is an alpha male touched with fire trying so very hard to extinguish his own distinct, personal & brilliant glow. on a path that can only take him further toward his successful ascent into madness. he is surrounded by bags full of stuff. he falls silent from time to time. looks franticly into the compact (ed space) then dabs & dabs & dabs. rubs & rubs & rubs. at times using only his fingers. what does he see this altered self portrait? he repeats what sounds like the number 7...in the mirror…the angels…they like my face…like they made…they like my…so much…they created…3…6…7…side ones…a monday…still gotta be april… we cross the bridge. he’s lost in someone else’s idea of beauty where local & express run on the same track at the same speed forever. he rubs & rubs. are we all part of this self-portrait that moves with or without us? milk? facsimile? reflection? fascism? crisis? bourgeois synthesis? freedom? anything? everything? nothing? solid? liquid? ephemeral? rich?  poor? illusion? fiction? human? sacred? covenant ?    dreams(s)?                                         ?CONVEXION?                  


dalachinsky  nyc   2/19/21/23/24/16

 



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