Discover more from The Bride Stripped
Prudence in Hell 052
In Which I Ask You Some Things
At any period an artist should have been able to remain in his studio, imagining form, and provided he could transmit the substance and logic of his inventions to another man, could have, without putting brush to canvas, been the best artist of his day. —Wyndham Lewis, Blast 1 LIFE BREATH DEATH —Brion Gysin, Alarme
As some of you have noticed, my work is trying to articulate —not only cover— a large amount of ground. There are three more reasons for the parallel substacks: granularity, reference, lensing. (In addition to speed, which I can better modulate with two instruments. Two speeds me up; one slows me down.)
The conversations we are having at Covidian Æsthetics are very different from those taking place elsewhere. The conversation at The Bride is —stranger still— their debridement. I’m a very weird writer overall.
There’s a few questions I’d like to run through you now: how can we best immanentise the material we are working with, that which you are reading, and cowriting, and informing with me? What type of channels or joint ventures should we pursue? How do we get the word out? Whom and what are we for?
I am currently dealing with a health scare —of my own, at last!— the kind that makes one reconsider what the best use of their time is. (This, on the probable eve of hellacious success, as no worthy actor goes entirely unrewarded.) My time is very clearly split between a certain initiative I share with Alonso and my writing. The amount of reading and rereading that goes into that writing is one of my life’s happiest exigencies.
This could have been another excursus on writing. It won’t be. It is an invitation to engage.
I am willing to go further but I need the interest to support it and the means to do so. The Scrying Wolves will continue until morale improves, but at their own pace, which is as new forms arise.1 And yes, experimenting with any and all forms is much on my mind, even as my current capacity to do it all alone is limited. I need allies beyond the guest columnist (and I need allies like all my guest columnists).
With that, I will leave you on two notes I hope to expand upon soon:
a) Trump is when theatre took the centerstage more generally. Obama is simulacrum; Trump is theatre. In Klossowskian terms, is theatre a return to the phantasmic? There may be some aspect of that, which I captured early on in the pandemic in the shape of ‘cultural drives’. But let’s assume that theatre —even and especially that of the Gran Teatro del Mundo variety—also introduces constraints; that it is a constraint or has constraining elements. Perhaps theatre is the inter-mediate form, the becoming of phantasm into simulacrum. Perhaps there is a vicious cycle to unravel here. My next piece for Covidian Æsthetics will deal with this.
b) As I prepare the coming Aide-mémoires in Power on aggression and deep play, I wanted to note that my first aesthetic experience was a direct encounter with the sublime. This may have well developed into an aptitude and a predisposition, which coming work for the Bride will continue to reflect. I belong to the vast, uncharted spaces. When Alonso first wrote about me, in a mathematical phantasy he produced in his late teens, I was a character called Phaestia that lived off the Cartesian grid. I appeared rarely and for good reason. To quote Pascal:
“I see the terrifying spaces of the universe that enclose me, and I find myself attached to a corner of this vast expanse, without knowing why I am more in this place than any other, nor why this little time is assigned me at this point more than another out of all the eternity that has preceded me and all that will follow me.”
A violent delight, and humbling.
I am, for example, considering doing a live reading of Lewis’ Enemy of the Stars over several Wolves.