posted by Amber Bell
My friend and I were lying on the hillside at Chapman School, watching the Swifts gather at dusk. We were discussing the idea of choosing one topic to make artwork from, then working with it for a long time. Is it okay to make art about the same thing for ten years? For the rest of your life? As we sat, lazily discussing the idea, the Swifts churned and wove through the air. They dove in groups of thousands at the chimney that holds their home, then swept back up, weaving off into the sky. A few minutes later, they would arc back, consider the chimney, and fly off again. It occurred to me that the process of making artwork is similar to the pattern of the birds. You approach something, make an attempt, then move off to get perspective. There is always the chimney, though, making itself available. Over and over again, you can come back to your idea from a different angle or in a different light.
Lone Twin utilized the Swifts’ technique when they approached their performance. Over and over, they would present an image, an action, or a phrase. Each time it would have a little more depth or a little more context. Gary and Gregg have apparently studied the birds well, as they spent the entire evening literally moving in circles, always coming back to the same ideas.
Lone Twin, like the Swifts, were riveting. Somehow, in their continuous revisiting of words and motions, they captured vast depth of a feeling. With their cattails, tape players, and rugged ponchos, they reached into the dirt and pulled out a throbbing heart with its failings, a heart and its blessings.