Can you find the portraits of Glen Wilson in the desert?
This story is part of Image number 8, “Desert”, a supercharged experience of becoming and spiritual renewal. Have a good trip! (Wink, wink.) See the full package here.
The wilderness that I have known since I moved to Southern California from Chicago almost 30 years ago, both as a manifestation of space and an expression of time, belies expectations and never fails. to reveal itself as an expanse of colliding dichotomies. His land stretches out, the boundaries are fragile, what seems sterile is bearing fruit. The moon rises as well underfoot as on the horizon, and here inevitably succumbs to the. Beyond any terrestrial prism through which one can observe a seemingly limitless place, the consciousness of the desert, I suppose, remains more in the cosmos than with the fleeting perspectives of the humans passing through it. When I find myself in the wilderness, whether it’s arriving there as a destination in the east or north, or coming back to another vast ocean in the west, my most basic questions are given space to breathe. “Where am I?”
If the desert reflects a constellation of constantly evolving questions – a vocation – my piece “Desert Totem” forms a continuous response, a kind of personal and cosmic echolocation that plays out in my creative work. It is made up of portraits I made at different times – of a man named Elijah and a great horned owl – which are woven into the mesh of the diamond-mesh doors that I have collected over the years. years in houses (now disappeared, in my own neighborhood, but reactivated in my work). The two portraits reflect outwards and inwards (on the back).
I met Elijah years ago. We were both fishing in the desert – him literally, me metaphorically as I sped along the desert road, with the Parliament-Funkadelic “Mothership Connection” screaming in my car. I had asked the cosmos a question about presence versus absence in the desert, and Elijah quickly introduced himself, fishing along a roadside irrigation ditch, as if to say, “You. Are here ! At another time, I was obliged to give a burial to a great horned owl at the foot of a saguaro where the deserts of Sonora and Mojave merge. Years later, I had the opportunity to meet one of the owl’s living descendants up close. The two images travel with me, in my mind, with the work that I do. And just as I continue to move âDesert Totemâ from one context to another, the questions around presence versus absence, arrival versus departure, installation versus migration and erasure. against fairness will persist, provoke and, hopefully, forge bonds.
Glen WilsonThe multidisciplinary practice of (born 1969 in Columbus, Ohio, lives and works in Los Angeles) includes photography, sculpture, filmmaking, installation and assemblage. Provoking questions around voice, visibility, and cartography, Wilson’s works suggest fluid narratives of place, diaspora, cultural heritage, and the intersections of individual and community identity. Wilson has recently exhibited at Frieze London and in group exhibitions at the Getty Center and the California African American Museum. Wilson holds a BA from Yale University and an MFA from the University of California at San Diego and is represented by Divers Small Fires Gallery (Los Angeles / Seoul).