NOTES FOR INTERVIEW WITH JOHN DAVIS
(Written before the call and not revised after it)
When I am learning at my best I am threefold, one after the other but also joined as one:
1. When I choose my field of inquiry and develop my strategy and vision through pointing my compass, drawing a rough map and coming up with the guiding metaphors/images/source code
I am open, centered, in and with my human instinct and intuition, feeling and seeing through, listening to the inner voice and guide and the outer echoes, sensing the vibrations, sounds and colors.
2. In the observational and experiential moments, when I go out on the field, I immerse myself, intermingle and interact, living the experience in first person with my body-mind directly and fully:
I am like an eagle, a horse and a fish: in the air, on the ground, underwater, I am like an animal experiencing reality in an immediate direct way with all senses and emotions open to receive and interact.
3. In the moments of synthesis, when I review the stages of observation and research bearing in mind my matrix to gather together establish and consolidate my learning experience:
I am like a multimedia artist working on a mosaic of images, sounds and words, layered and spread out to fill in the puzzle which is the compilation of my source code of the start, but unlike a software it is unexpected, lived day by day and new. Anomaly and wonder have a place in it and so has the interaction between the digital and analogic/associative approaches.
DRAWING AND ROUGH NOTES AFTER THE INTERVIEW
After the call, John asked me to do a drawing.
I took notes on the process flow, tracking the steps, thoughts, actions in a multi voice/layer stream: action/description, thought/ observation, comments. The original hand written copy of the notes is attached. The resulting text contains some additions, mostly comments, which are not present in the handwritten notes.
A DRAWING ADVENTURE
I took paper from the xerox machine, A4 sheets for the notes and A3 for the drawing.
I went around the office desks to gather all the color pens I could find .
there wans’t much, only those kind of phosphorescent pens used for highlighting text
I took a long book (catalog) from the shelf to help draw straight lines.
I connected to my feelings and emotions resulting from the interview.
I started looking at the A3 white sheet and proceeded to divide it in 3 triangular sectors, the middle one pointing up.
I then inscribed a circle in this middle triangle free hand.
“this looks a bit lousy”
all three triangles did not have sides drawn on the edge of the sheet
I decided to go look for some circular object to help me draw a proper circle. I looked around the office, tried a CD box but it was too small for a circle touching the sides of the triangle.
I went out to the kitchen to look for something else.
I tried a cup and a fruit plate: too small or too big.
In the sideboard with glasses I noticed a porcelain old white vase with top cover and blue enamel.
On its cover the writing “Diasor Bum”, on the vase “Ens Veneris”
I recognized the vase as an object which had been around my father’s house. (see pictures).
No way of decoding “Diasor Bum”
For “Ens Veneris”:
An early name for a chemical and medicinal preparation later combined with Flores martiales or Martial flowers under that name, since the Royal College of Physicians considered them insufficiently distinct. It was prepared from a mixture of COLCOTHAR of GREEN VITRIOL and SAL AMMONIAC sublimed until it attained a ‘beautiful yellow colour’ [Pemberton (1746)]. Not found in the OED
after having drawn the circle, I decided to turn the drawing upside down, with the middle triangle pointing it’s open arms upwards.
I look at the sheet: I have 1 circle and 3 triangles. While drawing I had used my hands to get an idea of the surface in dividing the space. Now I retake a kind of very rough measure: in the 2 lateral triangles I can fit two times my hand, in the central one 3 and in the circle one (my hands are medium/small): 8 hands in all.
I feel stuck with the lines: they don’t flow, they are there only to create the partitions, but I will then have to handle them.
I line up the colors I found: orange, pink, light blue, violet, yellow, black, red (besides the pencil I used for lines and circle). I will use color moving from instinct.
I start filling in the circle with light blue and the small triangle under it with violet.
Then I go over the center of the circle with yellow.
I ask myself. “what to do with orange”?, “how can I intervene on the lines”?
I pick up the thick black pen
I feel the color: difficult, strong, definitive but at the same time a non-color. Once you put it down, that is draw with it, no other color can be superimposed on it.
Think the phrase: “the responsible use of black”.
I feel the black pen in my hand, actually the pen feels “light”, I smile and start using the black pen in the right hand triangle in dotted strokes
“should I continue all the way ?” It’s boring to carry this out or maybe not right for the picture…”
I feel like doing longer strokes
I start doing tangle like strokes to finish up filling the section
“I’ve got food for psychologists here…”, “enough with black
I finish up with a black “base” (origin) on the bottom of the upside pointing central triangle.
pink or orange now? I ask myself. I think: “ I never really liked pink so much except in flowers…
Let’s do red, the pen is lousy though…
I like yellow-blue-red Mondrian style
I go for the red and draw a dotted center in the yellow part of the circle with a dotted line going down to the vertex on the bottom. The red pen doesn’t write any more.
I must address this pink now, mmmm…
I focus on the feel of the pink pen and the color: “it’s sweet after all (I don’t like pink marshmallows though)
I let the pink loose on the right side of the central triangle.
Orange? Yes: I like it!
Then I go with the orange and use the two orange pens I have on the left side of the central triangle
Here I wrote down “all my voices” but don’t rember well how it arose, I suppose it refers to the colors…
I think: Uh, the drawing is turning out really ugly! But who cares, I like the process/adventure of doing it.
I now have yellow and violet left: go for yellow, lavishly…
I fill in the left side triangle with yellow
ah, lots of light!, I’ll leave it just yellow like this, empty.
The pink and orange form two separate sectors, let’s intermingle them
I go over with the orange on the pink side and the pink on the orange side of the central triangle.
I cover the pencil line on the left side with violet
I think maybe I have been conditioned by the “threefold” expression I used in the notes. Might I have chosen another form?
I say to the drawing in German (my rediscovered Mother tongue):
“Liebe Zeichnung, bist du häβlich!” (dear drawing, you are ugly!)
IT WAS FUN!