Monday, January 28, 2013

Vignettes, rocks, Nock and Naz

Life is woven by hand with threads that are spoken, felt, heard and remembered.  The fabric is strong but fragile, random yet inter-connected.  It is the woven fabric of time, and I have always thought of time and space as the spirit of us.  We are separated just by time or space, within the fabric of time-space. It is the universes most incredible invention.

I like to think that the universe decided everything had to touch to be real, and without touch, cannot be real.  I am an atheist but if there was a mastermind who dreamt this shit up, we don't even have the language to begin to understand that kind of greatness. 

In my evolving blog posts I am speaking more broadly, I know. I make no apologies, because I really do want to spend more time exploring life, and what better way than by reflection on people's stories. Their multiple stories told and twisted into that magic quilt of life.

Where is this sentimentality coming from?  My Scottish roots, obviously.  Also, I just had a guy comment on my post about Nock.  I posted the comment, but I loved it so much I want to quote it here so you don't miss it:  

I was at a bar with my lady when a gent offered us his seat. We sat with him and spoke of life, travel and graffiti and then realised we grew up painting and creating right next to each other on neighbouring farms in WA. I remember driving past his farm on the way to school and admiring his artwork adorning any possible wall or surface. This fine gentleman was Nock. What a champion! Love this post FF. Thanks for sharing...

Time and space.  

I have a story of my own that I would like to share with you. I collect rocks and minerals.  Love them.  I was at a wee place in Tasmania called Stanley in 2011.  I found a shop that was obviously owned by an enthusiast, so I went in.  A woman stood silently behind the counter.  I asked for a closer look at a relatively huge chunk of Crocoite.  It's not an overly abundant mineral. It is fire engine red and the crystals look chaotic. It is stunning.  

Assuming the woman to be the shop owner, I asked her if it was local.  She attempted an answer, desperately fumbling with the tag, but then she choked on her own half formed words.  Her eyes welled with tears, and her hands shook.  She slowly looked away from the tag and into my eyes and said "I don't know. My daughter is the one who knows about this stuff, and she died last week”.  She looked away again, waving her hand at the shop “this is hers and I just don't know what to do with it".  I hugged her, we both cried, and I left with more minerals than I meant to.   But I will never forget that woman, standing in her daughter's store, shocked and scared. It was one moment in space, where we connected in time as well. A week earlier, her daughter would have sold that rock to me. A week later, the shop might have been closed.

Bringing this back to street art, that being my focus and your interest, I bring you my final vignette. Those of you not friends with Ben Naz on Facebook, he is this awesome street artist, going through a massive fight with oesophageal cancer.   Because he is so engaging, talented and awesome he has a massive following and street artists from around the world send him their art and well wishes.  He has roots in the East (Philippines) and is living in the UK (born in France), so he straddles the East and West.  As some of you will know, my recent journeys  spurred my interest in street art in Eastern Cultures. 

I can't help thinking artists who straddle that divide have so much more to say.  Anyway think of this post as something of an Arc.  I hope to bring you much more of his story. He has agreed to an interview, so more to come.   Like Nock, I hazard a guess there are a thousand people out there with a story to tell about this guy they met...I can't wait to be one of them.

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