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7/24/09

Practicing Slow

I like the concept of slow.

I like things that slow the pace of life. Food cooked slowly. Bread rising and soup simmering, teasing and tempting the senses for things to come.

I like things made by hand. Things made slowly and with love: knitted mittens; a scarf, a hat, a sweater. Something that didn't come from Target but came from love. Slow love.

I like having stitching in my basket. Fabrics that were hand-dyed from plants grown in my garden. Projects waiting for that exactly right moment when I will take up my needle .......

At this time in my life, I want to savor moments, not let them rush by me. I want to sit with experiences. Does this put me out-of-step in the too-fast hurry-up world of multi-tasking, image-distraction, and information overloading? Perhaps.

Everywhere I go, I see people sharing the same table in a restaurant, but one is talking to someone else ~~~~on the cell phone. Did I tell you about the man I saw wading in the waves on Long Sands Beach, his cell phone attached to one ear, talking talking talking. What could have been more important than that moment of sea and sand and sky and sun?

Perhaps I am out-of-step, but it's just fine with me.

I like what emerges when we let go of fast ~~~~ quick ~~~~ immediate gratification. But you know, just when I think I'm on to something new, I discover that others have got there first. For example, in 2004 the Australian critic Robert Hughes, said:

We have had a gutful of fast art and fast food. What we need more of is slow art: art that holds time as a vase holds water: art that grows out of modes of perception and whose skill and doggedness make you think and feel; art that isn't merely sensational, that doesn't get its message across in 10 seconds, that isn't falsely iconic, that hooks onto something deep-running in our natures. In a word, art that is the very opposite of mass media.

I believe slow can be healing. Taking the time to follow rain droplets on the window pane. Taking time to just sit ~~ doing nothing. Letting ideas germinate and come to flower. Taking time to breathe. Taking time to be who you really are.

The artist Sabrina Ward Harrison said of her work (find it here at http://www.sabrinawardharrison.com/ee/index.php/sabstudio/tlp/):

"As we have barreled deeper and deeper into a technological /
result driven 21st century now more than ever I do believe we need to be bought home to the presence of our living. to allow the restful validation of your own tender true humanity, may this work be a living ode to our living. I am striving to create both a visual and emotional unfolding through the textural interchange of photography, sound, collage, film and found objects. As you observe, as you listen may you rest into that place where this moment, and your deepest longing exist."

Practice slow. Give yourself a gift of timelessness. Click on Sabrina's website. And just listen. Just watch. Just breathe.

3 comments:

T said...

I am all for slow, sometimes fast people just make me laugh...
xt

justme said...

I like your way of thinking, Pat. I especially like to read slowly, savoring the character development and plot. I don't think my husband quite understands why it takes me so long, though I try to explain — he reads fast and furiously. Ha!

Hope you have a good time at the annual Maine Quilt Show. And your picnic foods sound lovely.

Michelle said...

i kinda like everything fast!!

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