Monday, July 4, 2011

Losing Oneself: Past the End of the Road

What does it mean to wander? To get lost? To get found? To live deliberately in both states: lost and found? In Rebecca Solnit's A Field Guide to Getting Lost she tells us:
"Movies are made out of darkness as well as light; it is the surpassingly brief intervals of darkness between each luminous still image that make it possible to assemble the many images into one moving picture. Without that darkness, there would only be a blur." (p. 175).
This seems an apt metaphor for what it means to wander without purpose and purposefully; to do so with certain aim and without conscious thought. Along the continuum of light and dark we stand ready to not know, to unlearn, to dream in darkness.

Once at Grand Central (Manhattan, 2010)
"Not to find one's way in a city may well be uninteresting and banal. It requires ignorance--nothing more. But to lose oneself in a city--as one loses oneself in a forest-- that calls for quite a different schooling." - Walter Benjamin
To Lose Oneself in a City (Wall Street, NYC. 2010)

The Familiar Falling Away (Ringwood, NJ 2010)
"Lost really has two disparate meanings: Losing things is about the familiar falling away, getting lost is about the unfamiliar appearing" (p. 22, A Field Guide to Getting Lost, Rebecca Solnit).
The Unfamiliar Appearing (Ringwood, NJ, 2010)

The Space Between (Yuma, California, 2010)

"Once I loved a man who was a lot like the desert, and before that I loved the desert. It wasn't particular things but the space between them, that abundance of absence, that is the desert's invitation" (p. 129, A Field Guide To Getting Lost, Rebecca Solnit).

Out in the Desert (Yuma, California, 2010)

Terrible Things Happened in that House (South Dakota, 2010)

"In dreams nothing is lost. Childhood homes, the dead, lost toys all appear with a vividness your waking mind could not achieve. Nothing is lost but yourself, wanderer in a terrain where even the most familiar places aren't quite themselves and open onto the impossible" (p.182, A Field Guide to Getting Lost, Rebecca Solnit).

Flâneur (Warwick, NY 2010)


  1. Stellar work Mary Ann, I see your signature in every image and your searching soul shines through!

  2. Thank you Lina. So appreciate you saying so and seeing as you do:)

  3. From the makers of the Lo-Mob app, bravo, we like this serie very very much.

  4. Thanks Vincent. And I like your app very, very much too:)

  5. ah.
    i read your rhapsody post first. what a great lead to it.

    your artwork fits perfectly. takes us there. loses us.

    love.. the Walter Benjamin quote.

    thank you.

  6. @Monika, you are most welcome. Really enjoyed the book.

  7. I love the concepts you explore here, Mary Ann. Losing oneself deliberately - so different from feeling lost. Some of the images inspire the 'wanderer' in me.


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