Wednesday, November 28, 2007


After just over 12 months in my 'new' home, i have finally got round to unpacking my books.
A lack of shelving has been my excuse.
I took them out of their boxes and dusted each one off carefully; then i carried them into the house and put them where the shelving will (sometime) be. After i had unpacked around eight boxes, i realised that the piles were not the size that they should have been. Somewhere beneath all that other stuff there was another box languishing, 'a-mouldrin' in the garage.
I pictured the book that i wanted, it was the one that i had used for my masters dissertation.

I rang the bookshop to see if they had anything by Sophie Calle. The lady said that there was little in print of her work at that time. There was one book that was actually a catalogue from a retrospective at the Museum of Tel-Aviv. Amazingly, a copy had been ordered to this store and had never been picked up by the customer. I convinced her to let me have the copy; it was the most i have ever spent on a book.

After much rearranging of heavy boxes i found the culprit, at the bottom of a large pile. I knew as soon as i opened it- that damp smell, the carcasses of woodlice. The box was sooty and soft and the worst affected volume was my precious museum catalogue. I have rescued it though. The damage is mainly to the cover, so it is still readable.

I can feel a change in the air. A vaguely detectable sense that things are soon going to be different. My eyes feel wider open, my senses sharper, and i feel like i am indeed the sum of all my experiences.

Saturday, November 03, 2007

There are 592 search results from Google when i try to make up for the fact that i did not know that Dimitri died on the 19th July 2007.

I cannot report the details of his heart attack on the Moscow underground, nor can i report the wake attended by 50 people including some of the Volna performers group.

I discover that Monday would have been his 67th birthday and i try to think of a story to tell that is not news: a detail from the time i knew him that will record something more than the facts.

I think about the cherry blossom- we both noticed it at the same time- walking down a London street in February. It was truly a joy to see the pink petals above a row of scruffy shops.

I thought it was incredible that i met a Russian artist and his family on a tiny north african island last year.

There are some times when you know that, although you cannot say how, something is going to be an important part of your future.