33

I’m tempted to say that this project is finished. Or, that this is a project that should never end. Somewhere between those two thoughts is where I am right now, exactly half-way through this residency in Skagaströnd, Iceland.

The structure of the book work started to reveal itself in the last few days, each collection of artifacts gathered into chapter-like segments. There are 33. Collections, chapters, links, artifacts, voices, evidence of a place. Some are transcribed interviews, or a series of photographs, or data found online (like the daily plots of a fishing boat that was docked here last week), or a list of words, or a recipe for rhubarb pie. The traced ruins of turf houses, the mountain of fish nets at the dump. Nothing more, nothing less.

Powerful language, all of it found in place. Words and images that stand on their own, no explanation required. I’m looking for the open space between lines and pixels where the residue of a particular place, at a particular moment, is left behind. To be read like the impression of a dream.

1 back to god’s country
2 self
3 yeah, we have our families, connections, strong old friendship ties
4 water
5 boat
6 island
7 the box is a battery
8 einbúi
9 town
10 scientist
11 those transparencies
12 grandfather
13 depths
14 1815
15 fuel
16 take three, three cards
17 mayor
18 fiskisúpa
19 fjords, on the sea
20 bank sea hermit
21 just in front of me
22 there’s one bird
23 530
24 quota
25 orvar (arrow)
26 1964
27 light
28 rabbarbarabaka
29 mirror
30 mountain
31 horse
32 earth
33 hidden world

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#25 orvar (arrow)

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#33 hidden world

This one was for outlaws.
For outlaws?
Ya in the hidden world.
Oh in the hidden world.
Ya the hidden people over there in the cliff over there.
They live in the cliffs.
They live in the cliffs, that was their residence.
And then then they had the outlaws. They put them there.
So that’s einbúi. Einbúi means who lives alone.

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