Text(ure) – Millet, Allegory and Readings


Walk in a Time of Virus , 4 April 2020


I have only just returned from our evening walk. We were passing by Chris Kitchen’s farm when he ran out and offered us a glass of wine. We got to talking about things, the virus and art while we kept our distance, physical but not social.

In turn, Janet and I described our current work and as I explained in as few words as I could muster what I am doing, Chris said, ‘is it like an allegory?’. That was like a blast from the past: a word I have not used for some time which, if truth be told, says what my work is. It is a metaphor that encompasses the sacred and the profane, the religious and the secular. The text I wrote for Logos is infused with creation myth and scientific theory, Genesis and Evolution, in which the idea becomes physical, the text becomes texture, fact becomes myth and myth takes on the fact of physical reality, or should I say allegory? It is an allegory of origins, in which the animal self is embraced as part of the natural state of things, as a necessary, no, inescapable truth about our existence. No more can we reject the human-animal than can we are humanity. The two are entwined, coeval, parts of a whole.

This is why the lack of physicality in an online presence falls short of what I had intended. Yet, the virus, as much part of nature as anything, has made me think in terms of translating this into a screen based experience in some way, and why the balance of sensuality shifts towards sound.

I do not pretend that I could convey anything like the presence of the actual work in such a way, but I may be able to unfold some of its inner workings and thereby weave another form of narrative… or at least begin to do so.