There should be the bare minimum, and nothing more. There’s no reason to put lipstick on, earrings, or anything else that may detract from the essence of a thing. Maybe all understanding comes from the ability to practice restraint, to allow what is to be, to encompass in the minimal amount of moves and actions, that which is meant to be said, even if the outcome is uncertain.
A few nights ago we watched a documentary called Man on Wire, which recounts the daring walk on a tight rope between the World Trade center towers in New York City, in 1974. The towers were still young at this point, only having been completed recently, when this rather insane french man Philippe Petit, organized a daring breaking, smuggling ropes, steel cable, and a team of support people to erect the wire between the two buildings for his early morning walk. The details outlined in the film showed the absolute dedication of seeing his vision through to its finish. Madness that resulted in an act of beauty, that was both narcissistic and stunning to those watching from the towers and below.
The fascination with this film, is that for the final act to occur, to whatever outcome, his successful walk, or fall to his death below, were all preceded by tiny steps years in the making. Years of preparation, planning, and logistics went into the event. The same could be said about the motley lot that was intent on destroying the towers in 2001, but their actions were motivated out of hate, not an act of beauty. Harm was only possible to himself, not onto others, and there fore the artistic expression was true and pure.
Why all the ramblings about a three year old documentary? Because I believe it is a very clear glimpse into the madness and minutia that comes with any creative act. The years of experience that builds a state of confidence, to accept whatever the outcome that may be from ones own work, whatever that maybe. Tiny steps lead to production, that is only as good as the intention and skill of the mind and hands of the artist. Despite our best hopes, the work will express itself, conforming only to what it is, not to how we may wish it to be. Unadorned, it sits before us, and all we can do is appreciate each and every small action that led to its ability to stand alone, forever separate, yet entangled and interwoven to our own life.