- Why the band The National are Big Divorced Energy.
- Laurie Anderson on Reality and Non-Reality.
- Oral History of Bennington College in the 80's
Right now I’m writing something, and people are asking, “Is it fiction or is it real?” I was like: “Well, I’m really not sure where that line goes.” And I’m really not. And, being an artist is what? Real or fantasy or…? Even when I’ve tried to work in the real world, it seems more deeply fantastical than anything I could make up. The fact that it happened, does it make it less fictional than if it never happened? I’m not sure. It’s the same in VR.Recently, I spent time in a pyramid in the Yucatan—in a secret pyramid by James Turrell. Jim built a huge pyramid with a lake on top and a viewing device. It’s over Cenote, an underground lake, which are all over the Yucatan. They were made maybe a billion years ago or something. Meteors punched through the crust and made these underground lakes. They’re all connected: If you drop a note down in one of them, it will show up in another. They’re all connected by lakes.
Me and three other people were there to talk about the future of the planet. We didn’t come up with anything, I have to say, but we had a really good time. One of the things that reminded me of this was that you looked up at the sky through an ellipse shaped hole; you looked at the sky all night. Around this hole was another ring of light, which always was shifting. It wasn’t like camping and looking at the night sky; it was like looking at yourself looking at the night sky. Your interpretation of what black is always influenced by, “Is it surrounded by lime green or baby pink?” As the sun rises and the sky goes through every single phase that it could, from black to blue, including pink and red, you realize that even so called, “Seeing things,” is an act of comparison, memory, labeling and, fiction. It was never that as clear to me before as that. I’ve thought, “Oh, the sky is green!” I said, “Because it’s ringed with pink.” “Oh my, it’s brown!” “Because it’s against dark blue.”
We talked in this desultory way about what we could do. And, I mean… I’ve missed the thinkers in the last year. I haven’t heard from very many thinkers. The level of discussion has sunk to the rock bottom. Although, just when you think you’ve found a rock, you might find something else, like the slime beneath it. I’m fairly terrified and trying to not be; I’m trying to be an informed person who’s getting a lot of energy from a terrible situation. I largely blame myself for not seeing that we just very slowly didn’t seem to have a middle class anymore. I thought, “Where have I been?”