Friday, September 26, 2014

Where is the line (with you?)

As our first collection is complete it is time to reflect on the ideas behind the collection.

The collection 'Where is the line (with you?)' considers some of the many different ways of thinking about the line as both an idea and a thing.

The line is fundamental to our way of being in the world. It is our written language, our mark making, our way of expression of our experience and our ideas. The line is a version of us, however incomplete, inaccurate and inadequate. The line is all we have to work with.

We use lines to represent, to mark out, to separate, to contain, to define, to trace, to talk about something, to point at the other. Yet how do we explain what it is? We know what it does, but what is it in its line-ness? My baby son tries to grasp this as he grabs at the lines on his play mat, but he cannot hold them.

The drawn line is a fuzzy field, it is impossible to have the pure, depth-less flatness of the conceptual line. The conceptual line has no dimension, no depth but is not a pure line either as it is not actualized, it is not being a line. But perhaps the conceptual line is not a true line at all. Perhaps the conceptual is a counterfeit. Perhaps a line is only a line truly in all its fuzzy reality. The line has to line in order to be a line and to realise its line-ness. It is only in line-ing that it is a line. Its only in its immediate being that it is, we have to catch it line-ing.

Yet in its line-reality we find it even harder to understand than thinking about it as a geometric concept. We understand the line best in experience rather than in beholding it in language or thought. As we put it into rational words or conceptual thinking, its line-ness is lost. It just becomes a list of properties of which it is sometimes both-and or neither-or.

Straight, curved, limited, unlimited, sharp, fuzzy, concept, thing, defined, undefined, field, range, dimension, depth-less depth...

The poetic is closer to its line-ness as it opens up the line for consideration rather than seeking to define it with a fixed definition, to draw the line on lines so to speak.

Where is the line (with you?) considers how a line is in its relation to us. This is the only way it can be. The line requires us. It is only we who read it and who conceive it. The line occurs without us but it is not being a line in its true sense without us.

We have to catch it as it does.

In the collection:
The ombre shades of a dress where one colour slides into another with an ill-defined line
The fuzzy warmth of the knitted line on a hat which is in reality a spiral - an unending line
A necklace composed of different length lines, none of which is line-ier than the other
Scarves which encircle - a line that chases itself forever
Scarves which enclose - a field of haziness
Cards with the sharpness of print and the fuzziness of ink

Lines to enclose, enfold, wrap, snuggle, give.

Where is the line (with you?)

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