start with the rocks

165 To know the desert, the textures and colors, the way the light changes space here, the incredible vastness, the curve of the earth always looming. It is too much, too much space to know, too much land untouched. So i start with knowing the rocks, start with looking at the way cracks form from other cracks, the way edges are textured, the way the colors contine over geometric edges, the way the fractals in the rocks mimic the fractals of water in the washes after the rain, the tendrils reaching for the lowest point. This week I have been talking about rocks with Laura, who is visiting from NY and doing a residency here for 6 weeks. She is a painter, and thought she wanted to paint the desert, but it proved to be too much to translate. She too has been knowing the rocks, collecting the rocks (as a land scape), 3 at a time, on a blue painted board. The desert gets into all that we do here, without having to try to express what the desert is directly. The desert. By knowing the micro we can understand the macro, slowing down to look at all the parts of a whole, spending 3 days with the same rock that I can hold in the palm of my hand- the smooth face, the quartz pink underside, the dark hidden crack threatening to break the rock in two. I painted these rocks over a period of 3 days, each time I look at them i notice more, not details, but fragments of a geologic process, an action that happened millions of years ago still imprinted on the earth, perhaps quite unchaged. Visible time.