Thursday, March 02, 2017
Sunday, January 31, 2016
While living in South America, Most people I met were either seeking something authentic or following through with a plan that maximized exposure to a broad selection of popular experiences. At some moment, both situations tended to lead to disappointment. Maybe the food makes them sick, maybe it’s the altitude, maybe their travel companion is an unbearable jerk, or maybe they are more perceptive than their tour guide gives them credit for and they are bored. Seeking authenticity is paradoxical.
I walked alone for hours in the mountains, for 9 days straight. I did it for another artist’s project. I found that the time alone was overwhelming and real in a way I couldn’t have prepared for. Sometimes it was too much and found myself crying because I knew there was absolutely no way to ever describe the landscape, the experience, the air, the smell, to another person. I wanted the validation that comes with someone else’s full understanding and knew I’d never get that. I thought about what the memory of this place would be and how different and removed from the real moment it would become. Maybe poetry can be used here. I might just be really emotional right now, but when I think back to the time I was away, the memory vacillates between an absolutely terrifying time and a devastatingly lonely time. Yet it was also an inspirational and sublime experience. Maybe this is the case with all beautiful things. Already the memory is changing the experience, and I wonder what will be left of this place in my mind, in a few years.