Blue Wake
Work in Progress No.2  


From the first page on: a war of words, a never-ending Work in progress, the strangest
dream that ever was dreamt, becoming my dream - taken over, blended, connected, linked.
I know that the Wake is a
Dream Book
Night Book
Nightdream Book
Book Dreamnight

Joyce's Wake structure provides the structure for my book - recirculation; his form becomes mine.
I follow Joyce, keep close to him, dream with him - a punman with his own freudful mistake.
The end approaches the beginning: "Usylessly unreadable Blue Book of Eccles".

Joyce once said that in the Wake he had tried to bring a layered shifting multitude of stories into
one unified artistic creation: my book is also a layered work, not only in its form, but also since it
documents the layers of my own 'nightshifts'.

And my book is 'Blue' not simply because that was Joyce's colour (think of the 1922 Ulysses)
but because blue is the colour for a dreambook of the night.

My aim is to create an artwork which responds to the content and form of Joyce's work, expresses
the tension between them, and in tum embodies the tension between its own form and content and
those of the Joycean original.
Like the Wake (a record of HCE's grandiloquent dream of universal history) my book contains four
books, linked by the central figure of Anna Liffey/ALP.

The basic material I use is linen, woven textile, for this seems to me to correspond to Joyce's method
of construction, and my sense of his wordplay and language-blending is what I try to express
through painting. His dream-driven approach to language and image drives my approach to
creating visually the pressures and distortions of my/our everyday life, the displacement and
disappearance of objects and people. We can call this Transformation or Metamorphosis or
Metempsychosis: a freudful mistake.

That is why I restrict myself to the colour blue, the colour of dreaming, of the night, of the
"usylessly unreadable Blue Book of Eccles."

I make the paint myself, following an old Alchemist's recipe, and it is sensitive to the light.
That is why I can work only at night. First I must put the paint on to the linen base and after
it has dried I can then paint on it with water-soluble black paint. Then the linen canvas is 'watered',
which means that the black colour is dispersed, which 'develops' the picture. And where the black stays,
we can see the subject painted in blue. All that remains to be done then is to fix the image, the picture,
with hydrochloric acid.

This is a long work process: a work in progress.

Finally, my "Blue Wake" is also a 'funferal', for whilst I am saddened by its 'funeral', I am gladdened
by its 'fun for all', just as Joyce rejoiced in his funnuminal worldploy in Finnegans Wake.

for book details and price: please inquire

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