8.30 am: Off to School at the beginning of what promises to be a gruelling, week-long slog. I reviewed a draft submission of work and conducted an emergency Personal Tutorial before bombing off to the Old College for to hold a pair of PhD Fine Art tutorials. On arrival, Tom Ellis MP was placing a star on top of the Christmas tree. What good timing:
12.10 pm: Back through the streets and avenues of Aberystwyth to the mothership, to take a working lunch and ready myself for the additional Art/Sound lecture at 1.10 pm. I played them, as part of the sound content, Steve Reich’s Come Out (1966). I first heard this in an art history lecture in 1978, at Newport College of Art. The guest lecturer played a recording of the composition on a mono record player. I was utterly captivated; this would (eventually) change the course of my artistic direction significantly. Perhaps, then, I was the only person in that lecture theatre to connect with Reich’s piece. Perhaps, today, there was another.
2.10 pm: I began an afternoon Art/Sound HelpDesk for anyone who needed concluding advice on their presentation submission. In between appointments, I dealt a deathblow to dull and irksome admin responses:
5.00 pm: A brief tour of the studio, to mop up a few outstanding tutorials and lay the ground for meetings on Thursday. It’s all go. I can’t remember the last time a day dragged.
6.30 pm: Practise session 1. 7.30 pm: I undertook small-time admin (I think of this like delousing), booked some special tickets for a special concert with my elder son, for next year, and then returned to my conspectus.
Some principles and observations derived from today’s engagements:
- Often, we don’t proceed with our work on the basis of knowing what we’re doing. On the contrary, we proceed in order to know.
- When we discover the answer we’ll, simultaneously, determine the question that we were asking all along.
- Don’t move on with our work too soon. Consider, rather, moving outwards and inwards with it. In short, aim to discover the wider contexts and the deeper implications of what you are doing.
- Don’t force the work; let it work find its own way out of you.
- Sometimes you have to proceed on the basis of only the vaguest sense of something. Trust that instinct.