Monday, 25 October 2010

Judith Alder & Clare Whistler Bunces Barn

Start of a year long collaboration.
The perfect autumn sunlight
An apple to share, seeds and water
Tiny apples and golden seeds
Inside going out and outside going in
A day a month for a year

Saturday, 23 October 2010

 The colours mute
The damp is believable and rising up to meet me

There, a strike of light
Through the edge of the oak -
Like breathing, opens it all up again

Bottomless Tub

Pond at Bunces Barn


Monday, 18 October 2010

October 18

Mary Oliver
We speak a good deal these days of the loss of community, and many of us feel that we have lost therefore something very precious.  Essays can move us back into this not-quite-lost realm.  Tackling a hundred subjects, in a hundred different syles, they are like letters from a stranger that you cannot bear to throw away.  They haunt you, they strengthen you.
In the time of all time, the Now, some essay for each of us, be it old or fresh on the page, may turn out to be a most fervent, provocative, and valuable friend.

This reminds me of how I am opening up to the hundreds of ideas that Bunces Barn offers

Sunday, 17 October 2010

October 17th Julia visit to Bunces Barn

Tractor Trundle 1 from clare whistler on Vimeo.

Tractor Trundle 2 from clare whistler on Vimeo.

After the excitement of the Tractor Trundle ( 80 tractors touring the environs of Ashburnham for a few hours) which we jumped onto via Alan Petty's scoop and tractor outside my house, and lunch, Julia and I walked up to the barn in bright autumn sun.  So many conversations had already been had but when we were sitting quietly at the barn Julia came up with an explanation of what I am doing via the thoughts of her friend Barbara
"Intimacy and diversity" working project by project over time - produces a quality of neighbourliness which enables people to contribute their skills and ability to a common effort when needed in a transformation or crisis.  If you don't know what you have in other people, how can you use it in the best way.
Always learning the skills of engagement and negotiation to face uncertain futures, its what the timeless role of a middle-aged woman does, having the mobility to  cross cultures and class, to make it safe for others.

"To weave things from your doorstep"      "To bring the world back into your body from your feet"
"After all the shouting we need to whisper"

Intimacy and Diversity  could be the name of the conversations I have at Bunces Barn.

Wednesday, 13 October 2010

Sunday, 10 October 2010

walk to the barn sunday 10.10.10

subtle lines of white wavering in the bouncy windbreath
the leaves hold onto their last green, autumn colours seem hidden
sun breathing new life into all
heat loosens up the cycle of seasons and we go off kilter

Saturday, 9 October 2010

Walk to barn october 8

Walk to the Barn with David Rhodes from the De La Warr
Bright hot sunshine, and even vehicles going to the cows in the field below the barns and a chain saw in the woods opposite the road as we were walking up.  So maybe not silence, but definitely bucolic.  We sat and talked at home first, and a tour of the paintings.  The conversation was ever winding, hard to recall what was said so here are fragments -
St Leonards community, Angie and Len, Kate and her two exhibitions, Norman's Road and Polly's leaving party and a mother slapping her child
John Cage and his new book and exhibition
De la Warr as a hub for artists to meet
the drawing class and its unknown participants
the bricks in the ruined farmhouse, the blue headers, the r and d in the snow, the metal buckets in the grass, oak trees and my collection of photographs, giving him an acorn, a shower of acorns as we stood next to the bee hives, which looked like wasps outside one, the charm of the empty outhouse, the old iron window, practicality, his father a master tool maker, his 8 years as a toolmaker, how things 'made' for art appeal to him, that the artist does not have to be the 'maker', conceptual art.
What is education and what is art, I replied all art can be education
we both left school without A Levels, he did an access course then a degree, that people should go to university later
conversations as art, conversations as communication
things about our parents, things about my children, his partner
Pam Dor and Shaping Voices
The story of the owner who only liked ruins and not seeing anyone
'We must be modest in front of the weather" a Greenlandic saying.  He liked the lenticular photograph more than the others
Two wasps came in, they were not bees, we had the last two honey biscuits  I  had bought for the visit to  Angie.
 About Joanna and Biber,  about teaching the children this week to do improvisation, and their answers to how it felt, weird, unusual, feeling on the edge of something, unknowing - and how I was pleased with their answers, that it made them artists - that's where we all want to be as artists
about walking and thinking, about ghosts - from the people who walked on the ground before us, to the cold air moment of feeling one, to my sons easy recognition of them before he knew they were ghosts, to my "Visitor" project with Judith, to teenage girls and menopausal women hormonal change giving one a kind of extra sense, a heightened intuition.

a certain awkwardness
re defining conversation in the realm of art and ordinariness
a shared thermos and honey biscuit
high sun and John Cage
To have a viewpoint
like the owner only wishing to see ruins
ghosts among the blue headers, practical makers, brick after brick
unsettling wasps visited, a newly dead squirrel kept life and death close
Plunking acorn drop
gift of a seed

to more winding voices

Friday, 8 October 2010

Thursday, 7 October 2010

Poems about seeds 2

"To see things in the seed, that is genius."

Lao Tzu

Poems about seeds

"Before the seed there comes the thought of bloom."


Felicity Harvest meeting October 7

Arrived in a flash of brightness, a crabapple and chili jam in her hands.  We sat in the kitchen and talked, in a roundabout way.   About becoming celebrants, about training, about what it entailed, about her life, especially since retiring,I told the story of Angie, seeds, a tiny bit about the barn, Jonathan's birthday, gifts, mixture of ritual and performance.  Left with the idea of collaborating as celebrants...
ideas come from  anywhere - I am opening to all.

Monday, 4 October 2010

Visit to the barn

Possible rain at any moment, autumnal and blowsy, last blackberries kept children going. Niki and Alf, Iona, Arthur, Iris did the walk with Raphael and me. Dividing into different groupings, I talked to Iona about her Autumn box and helped her collect acorns and pink leaves, carried Iris and remembered how when your children are two, one's arms are at their strongest. A gentle approach to a small idyll. We sat on the steps and the children used the pond nets to find newts. Niki could sit and watch her children in their beauty and inquisitiveness and rejoice in it, tinged with her illness, her fear, her shaken hold on life. Capturing a wonder at her children in the simplicity of experience. That is what I will take away from that walk. And the long conversation I had with her on the way back as she carried the sleeping Iris. A barn visit can take many directions. I must try to collect them all.
October 3rd 2010 

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