Friday, March 21, 2014

inspired from Solnit's "Field Guide to Getting Lost"

5am, November 16, 2013
indigo... i know it is complex. and I know that indigo is not blue. And I argue that the "blue" Solnit references in her book, is really actually closer to indigo -but fair enough, who are we, on this earth, to rightly refer to anything as indigo anyway.

that said, How is indigo related to dispersion of light?

If I have concluded in my recent work that "light" is "god"and indigo is the color of "god", is indigo the lost light of god?

Is it the light that never reaches us? -because we are essentially out of reach from the heavens, we are here, on this floor, lost. Is indigo the lost god that is still only accessible through moments of hallucination, "insanity", or intoxication? Solnit says blue is the color of the atmospheric distance between here and there- it is the longing. Do psychedelics allow us to be in that blue-space?

And gold. I think about gold when I think about the European colonial men that survived and continued across North America to the wild west of California (whom Solnit writes about as well). The ones who came here for the gold. The ones that engaged that atmospheric indigo between where they were and the wild west, but what they saw in their minds eye was not infact blue, nor indigo, but real element metal gold. This unseen gold became the drive, invited their experience of longing.

So, I ask myself, when considering the historical and current collective psyche of California, of the Bay Area, Are we searching for gold amongst the indigo -is this the fractured capitalism within the sacred longing of lostness?

And is it perchance, precisely that which I am grappling with so deeply in my work of God Sees Everything? grappling with something so disconnected and so old, I can hardly explain to others what exactly I am even talking about.

all images by Drew Mandinach, 2013, solo performance, Los Angeles

Friday, December 20, 2013


god sees everything image and video documentation

Thursday, December 12, 2013

Thoughts and writing on God Sees Everything

I need to write more

I spoke with Ben about Sunday. About how it worked and didn't work. About how I need to get clear on the content of the work.

  • On WHY I am doing this project. I am doing this project to come to terms with the vastness of the universe and how we all know that to be true but the ways in which we socially and culturally deal with that can be dangerous, unclear, and misleading. I am trying work within that space between what we know to be deeply mystifying god-like universal spirituality and the most corrupt realities of our society. And I investigating the space via psychedelic drugs because psychedelics so clearly straddle those two worlds.
    • psychedelics relate to trash, to nazi germany, to capitalism, to privilege, to experiences of freedom, to corruption, to lies and story-telling, to manipulation, to California idealism, to hypocritical hippy cultures, to opportunities, to cultures of art and music and parties and raves and aesthetic and whiteness, to white culture, to to the belief systems of whites as more evolved, more enlightened. To mythos of white people coming from stars, to the commodification of spiritual experiences, to drug policy, drug wars, to organized religion
    • psychedlics relate to oneness, collectivity, vastness, light, god, the universe, dimensions of time and space, to patterns and geometric shapes, to transformation, to healing, to PTSD, to mental illnesses, to growing and forgiving and seeing things differently, to letting go, to surrendering to a drug, to leaving reality as we most often experience it. 
  • On what I am saying. I am saying, "Hey, these worlds are related and unhealed. You can acknowledge it all at the same time."
  • On what the purpose of this work is. To work within the relationship between disparity and oneness. To the desperately intimate proximity of wholeness and fragmentation through the topic of psychedelic drugs.
  • What Am I trying to say? That is the only place that God lives and it is not easy, it is not integrated, or comfortable, but it is what we have and I can only consider both the light and the dark in order to make work worth making.
  • There is this interest in GOD. In religion. In the spiritual. 
  • I want to know how do we cope with that elusive intimate proximal mind-bending unknown-yet-unquestionably-sensed truth (aka God). 
  • How psychedelic drugs bring us closer to that? And how is that crazy thing I am referring to as God so implicitly tied to politics, to society, to privilege, to race, to history, to capitalism, to body politics. How does one reconcile that? 
  • Is this project my attempt to reconcile that? I don't think so. I mean, I don't have any plans for reconciling, just acknowledging, seeing, noting, listening, being aware of that implicit relationship. And I am trying to understand that often unconscious and complex and tricky relationship between God and body politics.

I find a lot of people, colleagues, friends have strong opinions about psychedelic drugs. Some of them are affirming their power and importance, others are questioning and casting doubt about the need for them. But they do exist. In nature. In labs. And they do things to people that change them irrevocably.

One of the things I thought about on Sunday but also before Sunday is how if you see someone on say psilocybin for example, they don't appear enlightened or alive and awake to the universe and connected to all. Sometimes they feel gone, unavailable, dumb, out of it, confusing, weird, boring. But their experience is one of connection and awareness and lightness and aliveness. So what is the disconnect there about? Why is that the case? How is that experience so "real" and yet so isolated within the self and/or only with others on drugs? And I also think that when people are on psychedelic drugs they might find sober people to be closed, unaware, different, scary, intimidating but maybe also beautiful, perfect, and lovely. There is this clear separation. Within such a mind-blowing spiritual experience such as psychedelic drugs, what is that fragmentation about?

Another thought: People keep talking about how drugs stories are like dreams, no one fucking cares except the person telling the story because the essence is so non-transmittable within the context of conversation/words. Hmmm... maybe this dance project is to represent and transmit every lost drug story, every disregarded or misunderstood dream.

The more and more I think about Sunday, the more I value it. The more real and alive and intimate I realize it was. I wrote a lot of memories about it the other day. I thought about posting them here... not sure if I will yet.

Tuesday, December 10, 2013

God Sees Everything: L.A. and S.F.

homeLA, November 2013

The News, SOMArts, San Francisco, December 2013

Tuesday, November 5, 2013

Friday, October 18, 2013

Anne Bogart and Judith Butler ideas that I am relating to collective TRANSFORMATION

In A Director Prepares: Seven Essays on Art and Theatre by Anne Bogart, on pages 61-63 in the essay on eroticism she talks about static art. about static inspiration. something that stops you in your tracks:

What Bogart fails to do is discuss or note the death, the loss, the mourning, the second phase of change that is possible once that attachment/relationship is made. She clarifies that there is an initial change and/or one that is drawn out over the relationship ("extended intercourse") through the avenues of vulnerability involved in our "socially constituted bodies". But what happens when that relationship is over or lost? This risk/experience/possibility is not covered by Bogart, but I found Judith Butler discusses this phase in Precarious Life on page 20:

Loss and vulnerability seems to follow from our being socially constituted bodies, attached to others, at risk of losing those attachments, exposed to others, at risk of violence by virtue of that exposure...

she the continues on page 21:

...Perhaps, rather, one mourns when one accepts that by the loss one undergoes one will be changed, possibly for ever. Perhaps mourning has to do with agreeing to undergo a transformation (perhaps one should say submitting to a transformation) the full result of which one cannot know in advance.

So is there a #8 and #9 to Bogart's list? and could it be something like,

8. There is an end to that intercourse. A loss.
9. Following that loss, is a mourning that is ultimately, if successful, transformational. There is a second irrevocable change that is just as unplanned and uncharted as the initial erotic arrest.


So god sees everything. Because we are inextricably tied to one another. Because when we have transformations within our own autonomous bodies and selves which happen to also be unavoidably social, relating, connected, we are participating in a larger collective transformation. And it is clear to me that not only do people take psychedelic drugs to induce such transformations, and that many claim to experience them during their trips, but that one common experience of these drug induced states is a deepened and clear understanding and knowing of that connectivity, collectivity, oneness within the experience of love and understanding.

why is this project called god sees everything? because there are two realities being straddled here: there is the one in which I am fascinated by the collective oneness of the universe- this sacred universality that is often brought into awareness through the use of psychedelics. And secondly, simultaneously, I am aware of the "political god" in it all. I am aware of the fractured, institutionalized, privileged, surfaced, hypocrisy that is entrenched in the world of drugs- be it pharmaceuticals, or drug wars, or drug politics, or ritualized or appropriated and/or de-ritualized inductions that wreak violence and further fragment the oneness that is ultimately undeniably true.