Kibbutz of Desire

Strange that all of a sudden an expression should come up like that, one that has no meaning, a kibbutz of desire, until the third time around it begins to take on some meaning little by little and suddenly the expression doesn’t seem so absurd any more, like a sentence such as: ‘Hope, that lush Palmyra,’ a completely absurd phrase, a sonorous rumbling of the bowels, while the kibbutz of desire is not absurd at all, it’s a way of summing up closed in tight this wandering around from promenade to promenade. Kibbutz; colony, settlement, taking root, the chosen place in which to raise the final tent, where you can walk out into the night and have your face washed up by time, and join up with the world, with the Great Madness, with the Grand Stupidity, lay yourself bare to the crystallization of desire, of the meeting.

— Julio Cortazar, Hopscotch

The ‘kibbutz of desire,’ a completely malleable notion, a semi-indiscernible phrase, surrounds the basic premise of finding the community for which you yearn, feeling secure and supported within it, without forgoing your individuality. Amending this premise, I add the notion of accepting your environment in its totality including the negative attributes, physical and otherwise, rather than fighting, complaining, and ridiculing those attributes, you accept them, while reimaging the space or redefining the space’s poetics, these elements that provide identity, history, and personality. Why limit poetics to the literary or any other epistemology? Apply it to the immediate surroundings, everyday, instead of leaving it in one sole realm, allow the self to oscillate, to be approachable and receptive; then how would you redefine yourself relative to the spaces you regularly occupy, what would they show you, what would you add to these spaces? This is not about knowing or realizing what you have, it is an attempt to comprehend what you’ll never be able to verbalize with complete assurance in our daily epiphanic experiences, or as Wordsworth referred to them, “spots of time.”

The project, Kibbutz of Desire, a story communicated through prose and photographs, is a singular entity composed in three volumes creating a triptych of sorts. Each volume reflecting a unique lens, theme, and stage. The books were composed relative to a timeline, but with the books' covers being purposely unmarked, the volumes are able to be read/viewed in any order; reflective of how a life is lived with a beginning and end...yet, memories, observations, and ideas colliding and reacting at points that do not quite adhere to a linear framework...a timeline that is more circular in shape yet spiraling above each layer of experience representing a path similar to a gyre. The Kibbutz of Desire is a conversation with the past about the present looking towards the future present. It is about Pessoa’s “millimeters of infinitesimal things” communicating with us about our environment and the mystery of life related to the ancient present, ancient because everything when it did exist, existed in the present. By using photographs to examine pauses within time, the books, utilizing a filter, look through the experienced past informing interpretations of the current present. The work is an admission of powerlessness, over the past which cannot be changed, but by the acknowledgment and the act of reframing memory power transitions from the memory and is placed in the artist’s hands for the viewer’s consumption and interpreation.