Archive for June, 2020


Friday, June 26th, 2020


The spring night folds its legs under itself, like a deer, and collapses — an elegant animal structure — into the grass.

Though darkness has fallen over the place where I live, three daffodils emit a blazing yellow light.

Can three daffodils be a vagina?

I am not sure how to count nights or stop them.

Does the sun stop night?

Olafur Eliasson’s turbine sun, which I once lay beneath, with others, something that seems impossible now (Spring 2020)

In India, I know my uncle is drinking a glass of water and reading the paper.  He’s waiting for his bowels to start moving so that then, on an empty stomach, he can do his pranayam.  Daily yoga:  Coffee table pushed out of the way.  A white sheet on the rug.

My dog let out a very deep sigh just then.


Things I am reading on my phone:

Three rhino poachers were eaten by a pride of lions. Three pairs of shoes and one axe were all that remained.

“I walked over the crisp browned breadfruit leaves lying on the grass like curled, withered things that had once been gargantuan bats, and I had a clear vision: I was a tall woman, hair wrapped in multicolour cloth. I thought of walking into Jolly’s Pharmacy in Roseau, our capital city, and buying one of the white tubes of generic lip balm (my mum forbade me from using lip balm for many years, as she thought it too effeminate) or one of the black pressed powder compacts or even just something mundanely unisex. I imagined doing the most mundane things as a woman. Sometimes, I stood out in these visions; other times, I was an unremarkable girl lost in the tarp-flutter of a crowd.” — Gabrielle Bellot, Mal Journal.

Emails and texts.


Write your notes on the night’s leg.


I vaccinated my child.  I don’t believe that vaccinations are detrimental.  That said, I could not tolerate the typhoid vaccine.  So I stopped.  My neighbor, a homeopath, gave me an alternative product.  In India, I lived in a modest, frugal and limited way.


Oh my god, another guttural sigh/roar from Porky.


For eighteen years, I taught at a Buddhist university in the United States of America.  One bite of that bagel with cream cheese and lox in the basement of the Empire State Building and I never wanted to go back.


The yellow notebook glows in my bag like zirconium.


In many states in the United States of America, The Far Right is resurgent.

How many tulips will destroy it, how many cloves?



Spring Night is closing on a bitter note and yet, at the same time, I imagine that our house is surrounded by thousands of scarlet tulips and that setting down our chai pani (the water for chai boiled with spices but no milk or tea), we chew the clove in the back of our gleaming teeth.

Glean images.

Accrue destiny’s stars.

Bhanu Kapil lives between the US and UK, though is currently living in Cambridge, where she has been the 2019-2020 Judith E. Wilson poetry fellow. She is the author of a number of full-length works of poetry/prose, including THE VERTICAL INTERROGATION OF STRANGERS (Kelsey Street Press, 2001), INCUBATION: A SPACE FOR MONSTERS (Leon Works, 2006/Kelsey Street Press, 2020), HUMANIMAL [A PROJECT FOR FUTURE CHILDREN] (Kelsey Street Press, 2009), SCHIZOPHRENE (Nightboat, 2011), BAN EN BANLIEUE (Nightboat, 2015), and most recently HOW TO WASH A HEART (Liverpool University Press, 2020), the summer choice of the Poetry Book Society. In 2020, Bhanu won a Windham-Campbell Prize for Poetry, and also a Cholmondeley Award from the Society of Authors, both for her body of work.


Friday, June 26th, 2020

This 7” print surfaced recently, I hadn’t laid eyes on it in a long time: 3 super-eight frames show my thirty-one year old self, holding a handgun, with a dangling price tag. Depicted are stills from Jennifer Montgomery’s 1989 film Home Avenue, in which she retraces the scene of a crime, a rape at gunpoint perpetrated against her when she a college student in Middletown, CT. In the film she returns to the site, the titular Home Avenue, only blocks from her family’s house, and narrates her memory of the event in a straightforward, dispassionate tone. I held the super-eight camera, and later witnessed her hand-processing of the color film in a tiny, bare-bones darkroom. The technique of hand-processing color movie film is crude: you unspool and bundle it into a can, the kind used for still-camera B&W film, and develop it in color chemistry. I was awed by Jennifer’s throw-caution-to-the-wind attitude – she’d invested some time and effort into staging the shots – but the risk paid off, the processed film yielded up images utterly transformed by reversal of color, day-glow psychedelic color, over-printing of images and sprocket holes, all manner of hoped-for and unknowable accidents.

I have barely a memory of the scene in the gun shop, or where it was, but it was all part of Jennifer’s inimitable method of reenactment, of piecing together a narrative from fragments in order to create an essay film, a medium she prized for its ability to “bring together writing, performance and the visual” all in one work.

Elsewhere, in an Afterimage interview, Jennifer complicated and nuanced her method by saying: “the visual is the balm, verbiage is the threat.”

Every time I am on the cusp of something new, I remember her insight and I keep it in my sights, even if I fail again and again to heed it.

Moyra Davey
June 2020

Moyra Davey was born in Toronto in 1958, she currently lives and works in New York. She has had solo exhibitions at Fogg Art Museum, Cambridge, Massachusetts (2008); Kunsthalle Basel, Switzerland (2010); Tate Liverpool (2013); Institute of Contemporary Art, University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia (2014); and Museum Moderner Kunst Stiftung Ludwig Wien, Vienna (2014), among other venues.


Friday, June 26th, 2020


IMG_1127.HEIC 6/8/20 5:22:58 pm

IMG_9271.HEIC 6/22/20 2:07:53 pm

IMG_0630.HEIC 6/8/20 5:20:32 pm

Paul Mpagi Sepuya was born in 1982, in San Bernardino, California and received an MFA in photography at UCLA in 2016. From 2000 – 2014 Sepuya resided in New York City, receiving a BFA from New York University’s Tisch School of the Arts in 2004. In 2019 a survey of Sepuya’s work was presented in a solo exhibition at the Contemporary Art Museum St. Louis that traveled to the Blaffer Art Museum in Houston, Texas. The corresponding monograph is forthcoming. Other recent solo exhibitions include DOUBLE ENCLOSURE at FOAM Fotografiemuseum, Amsterdam, Netherlands; PORTRAITS / POSITIONS at KMAC Museum, Louisville, KY; and STUDIO WORK at the Platform Centre for Photography, Winnipeg, MB, Canada. Recent group exhibitions include MASCULINITIES: THROUGH PHOTOGRAPHY AND FILM FROM THE 1960S TO NOW at the Barbican, London; IN FOCUS: THE CAMERA at the Getty Museum, Los Angeles; IMPLICIT TENSIONS: MAPPLETHORPE NOW at the Guggenheim Museum, New York; the 2019 Whitney Biennial; BEING: NEW PHOTOGRAPHY 2018 at the Museum of Modern Art, New York; and TRIGGER at the New Museum, New York. Sepuya’s work is in the permanent collections of the Museum of Modern Art, the Whitney Museum of American Art, the Guggenheim Museum, the Studio Museum in Harlem, the International Center for Photography, the Cleveland Museum of Art, the Milwaukee Art Museum and the Carnegie Museum, among others. Sepuya has taught at CalArts and Bard MFA, and is Associate Professor of Visual Arts at the University of California San Diego.


Friday, June 26th, 2020

For a new short film: a few images, some found, others invented. I’ve given the film a title (*Object Lessons, or: What Happened on Sunday*) and a kind of premise: an American art collector’s estate plans to build a glass house that will permanently memorialize the collector’s many prints and paintings. The spot selected—several acres of undeveloped parkland in upstate New York—was the site of a young woman’s murder, the circumstances of which have been exploited for political purposes by the founder of a far-right populist party called National Advance. I imagine the film consisting of a series of landscapes, joined by examples from the art collector’s personal holdings as well as scraps of printed newspaper commentary on the park’s history and its intended use. I’d like to find a way to include the American composer Frederic Rzewski’s piano piece The Road, especially this section

Stills from *Object Lessons, or: What Happened on Sunday*. Written, produced and directed by Ricky D’Ambrose. Cinematography by Barton Cortright.

From the visual reference file for *Object Lessons*. I often save and classify film stills that I especially like, such as these. Sometimes, the images serve as references for future projects.

Draft design for National Advance campaign poster.

From a set of eighteenth-century reproductions of a book of sixteenth-century erotic engravings, published in Italy as *I Modi*. The collector in *Object Lessons *is meant to have specialized in early pornographic prints, such as these.

Newspaper clippings that will appear in the finished film.

Ricky D’Ambrose was born in 1987, in Livingston, New Jersey. He is a filmmaker and writer in New York. His first feature, NOTES ON AN APPEARANCE, is distributed in the United States by Grasshopper Film.


Friday, June 26th, 2020

Studio wall, June–July 2019. Editing DAY SLEEPER.

Click image to view larger

Sam Contis was born in 1982 in Pittsburgh. She currently lives and works in Oakland, California. Her most recent book, DAY SLEEPER, a reimagining of the work of Dorothea Lange, was published by MACK in 2020.