Idées trouvé

If it is possible to create visual art by, deliberately and with purpose, assembling pieces of unrelated non-art objects (and it is…one term for such art is objets trouvé), then doesn’t it follow that it is possible to create literary art by, deliberately and with purpose,  assembling the concepts held within unrelated writing?

Regardless of the answer to that question, today, I may attempt to create idées trouvé. I may begin today or tomorrow or the day after or even the day after that.  If I do, I will do it by assembling, in such as way as to build as cohesive a meaning or message as possible, my own writing.  It’s still not clear, is it? No, so let me attempt more precision.

I’ve written—in this and other of my blogs and in pieces I have not shared elsewhere—quite a bit of unrelated stream-of-consciousness “stuff” (to use a charitable term) that cannot hope to have a life standing on its own.  But, buried within this mass of words, if I look carefully and with an open mind, I may find the wherewithal to create something more worthy of the term literature.

For example, just recently I have posted brief rants about:

  • the effects of climate change on agricultural output;
  • how access to money tends to coincide with a sense of entitlement;
  • communal living;
  • music;
  • food;
  • weather;
  • sources of our news;
  • dreams;
  • political lies;
  • joy;
  • friendship;
  • nature;
  • empathy;
  • religion;
  • art;
  • poetry;
  • gifts;
  • money;
  • history; and
  • hallucinations.

If I were able to successfully meld those shreds of disparate thoughts into a single, interconnected piece, it might have some merit.  It might be interesting.  It might say something, collectively, that its pieces could never say separately.  And bear in mind these are just some of the most recent posts; I’ve written 308 posts on this blog, alone, and there is so much more material from which I may choose.

And, so, I will spend time reading and re-reading what I’ve written with the objective of identifying and classifying the messages I had intended to convey through my words. Then, I will endeavor to construct an intricate bridge between pieces, tying them together in some cohesive fashion.  The result is likely to require significant time and effort to polish the components so they fit well into the framework of the bridge.  Perhaps the single biggest challenge will be to determine whether the components, either individually or collectively, have the capacity to adapt to the transformation from a tangled mass of unrelated ideas to a more streamlined superstructure of intent.

Having read and re-read what I’ve just written here, I know the task will be daunting, perhaps far beyond my capacity to accomplish.  If nothing else, it will be a challenge.

 

 

About John Swinburn

"Love not what you are but what you may become."― Miguel de Cervantes
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