Entering a dream with Pipilotti Rist

The Pipilotti Rist exhibition Sip My Ocean held at the Museum of Contemporary Art earlier this year still lingers in my mind.

The rooms of the MCA were transformed by light, film and sculptural installations to create a poetic and powerful experience.  Escaping into this alluring world the assumptions of reality were beautifully shifted and a new view of the world was offered – a task of most art, yet rarely achieved.

In her exhibitions Rist provides the audience space to enter into a dimension and to coexist within the frame of the art by lying and sitting within these worlds. Through the experiential nature Rist conveys her message of reality as an illusion and cultural construct.

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The viewer is valued as an essential participant in the process of art making. Rather than a bystander the audience is trusted and a relationship of give and take is developed, with each room further drawing the viewer into her otherworldly imagination. Presenting our integral part as actors within the biological world, Rist shows our bodies are part of the ecosystem and on par with other life forms.

See more on the Museum of Contemporary Art website.

Day dreaming about Luis Barragán's colours and shadows.

I am currently day dreaming about Luis Barragán’s incredibly coloured buildings. Barrágn was a Mexican architect who created colour saturated buildings which used shadow and water. He was awarded the Pritzker Prize for architect for his buildings named “a sublime act of poetic imagination”.

Casa Gilardi (Gilardi House) by Luis Barragan, 1976, Tacubaya, Distrito Federal, Mexico.

Casa Gilardi (Gilardi House) by Luis Barragan, 1976, Tacubaya, Distrito Federal, Mexico.

Barágan described his ideals as being amazement, enchantment, serenity, silence and intimacy. He sounds perfect and I love his colour palette and use of shadows and geometry which capture those ideals perfectly, in a heart achingly beautiful way, I can’t imagin actually being there.

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I Love You But I've Got to Leave You

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 Generally coffee and exercise would be this sidetrack in my mind, thinking when would I get a fix of each? Before or after exercise; or both? That I really didn’t feel like going to the gym, that I felt tired, that I needed to feel wired; a cycle of endorphins and feel good opioids flowing on a daily basis. Sound great and I’m missing it – just slightly.

 This latest realisation came on both quickly and slowly. I had been thinking about it for probably a few years, occasionally over a morning coffee I might randomly Google is coffee good for you? Only to find evidence that it improves concentration is a natural anti-depressant. I could find nothing that showed there were any negative health implications.

 Although, that deep down part of me knew this was kind of the case and kind of not really true. Why else was I occasionally researching it?

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 Until last Sunday there was the straw that broke the camels back; fortunately metaphorically. It was a lazy, kind of dozy Sunday morning and my yoga practice was of the restorative type and even that felt tiring. So I headed to coffee, one perked me up, delicious. By two coffees I was working on the base layer of a large painting, which was going well, but then in that kind of crazed adrenalin pumping caffeinated way I smeared all the paint. And then I headed to the gym for a long overdue workout. The workout was going well, until I went just a little bit too heavy on the squats and felt my back go. Always going that little bit too far, where the moment was overstepped.

 I tried to ignore the pain and had a glass of wine at lunch. I then spent the next three days lying on my back in pain, which gave me time to read, reassess, sleep and not drink coffee.

 While lying in bed I read a book about nutrition written by Dr Libby Weaver an academically qualified nutritionist with a PhD in bio medicine, so no fluffing and sprouting suspicious ideas.  Basically, she freeded me from years and years of guilt about never exercising enough and simultaneously gave me permission to take life slowly. This for me could be completely life changing.

 I was drinking coffee to spur that energised state that I once had naturally. Where did that go? I want that back. And yet the culprit may most likely be the very thing that I though I needed to get energy – coffee.

 The book explains the many ways in which the body works and processes energy, with detailed but readable facts and case studies. I am not completely finished reading it, but would encourage you to find one of her books to fully grasp the magic interconnected nature of our bodies.

I will see how the experiment goes, but so far I am feeling so much calmer, more present in and the moment rather than feeling either ahead of myself or exhausted. It’s a bittersweet loss, something I love, but you know when its time to break up. Will you join me? 

The book I read was ‘Calorie Fallacy’ but she has written many books.