beginnings – minutiae
Other than buddhas and blank books, I love to look at and collect little things. Perhaps somewhere in my mind I think I will be like Joseph Cornell and assemble the random skeleton keys, slides, escutcheons, forceps, business stamps, paper fragments et cetera into some coherent whole. There is a fetish quality to these objects that I can hold in my hand. I have much more important objects, like the Sacagawea dollar my father gave me and the lucky rock he was carrying in his pocket when he died, a turquoise mala that my husband gave me, and a lighter case we bought during our honeymoon in Paris. I often credit my love for objects as why I am an art historian.
That’s what research is like for me, finding the reference that brings everything together, pulling the glimmers of ideas into my work together into something new. Everywhere I have collected quotes, phrases, and images. I have print-outs of articles and explanations of theories in massive binders in my office. Sure, you can download the pdf, but for me it isn’t enough. Like books, I need to hold the text in my hands, to engage with it physically. Ideas for me are tangible, and I get the same rush when I find them that I do when I come up with them myself.
I now have an enabler for my fetish for minutiae. She owns the coolest vintage/oddities store and takes me junking with her!