Founding Documents #1: Towards a journal aesthetics statement

[ex nihilo] some thoughts for future rotating titles / and or our aesthetics statement

From: Joe Milazzo
Sat, Apr 12, 2008 at 5:42 PM
To: Eric Lindley, Janice Lee

Language I would be willing to sacrifice / adapt from APHORISMS BECOME ANECDOTES:

How we long these days for those long-since elapsed days when nothing truly meant nothing.  When nothing was not an arrow fired from… where? pointing towards not even to the faint whistling of spaces prone to vacancy.  Not some enveloping black, with malleable sides like a sack.  Not the tang of ozone.  Not grammar enamored of its own self-sabotage, not broken referentiality.  Not the desert of bones bleached, not X-rays that need never have been ordered, not some cohesion despite the dismissal of your skin.  Not prime mover, not phase, not the minor, not zone of the bracketed, not the blank in a string of coordinates, not, not, not, not.

Some “associates” / cognates of nothing (thank you Image-Making syllabus):

  • void (the)
  • vast expanses of space unpopulated in any way
  • the zero
  • the possibility of exponential progression
  • the space between 2 parenthetical marks
  • “all or nothing [at all]”
  • binary opposition / the morass binary opposition would avoid
  • the empty set
  • “nothing else matters”
  • despair
  • dwindling
  • ultimate fate of all that is corporeal
  • absence, either on its own terms or suggesting that which formerly was present
  • impossible noun – a thing which, in “not being”, is still a thing
  • broken referentiality
  • triviality
  • “sweet”
  • that which is heard-but-not-heard
  • whatever sensation ends up not getting retained
  • an accusation
  • dismissal
  • arrow towards everything (from which the arrow flies)
  • exclusion
  • inactivity, but not repose; inanition
  • a circle with a line run through it
  • a border circling (encircling) inaccessibility
  • “none more black”
  • vacuum
  • in no way
  • the primeval
  • Walter Sobchak’s nihilists
  • “there’s a difference between believing whole-heartedly in nothing, and in not believing anything”
  • utterance (or the lack thereof)
  • holes
  • lightless
  • utterlessness
  • complete negation, and without resorting to either prefixes or suffixes
  • self-abnegation
  • Zen
  • nowhere to land
  • that against which logic beats its head, and then passes out
  • The Fugs
  • boredom
  • stock answer
  • a plea for something
  • greasy nausea
  • the swirling, not the wind / medium of force
  • vortex with no pull
  • unattainable
  • naked
  • “much ado about _______”
  • “sound and fury signifying _______”
  • “move along, ______ to see here…”
  • the apparent
  • transparency (the medium of)
  • “______ but”
  • all else
  • Achraf El Bahi
  • “why be when ‘not be’ is an option?”
  • “money for ______ and kicks for free”
  • “ain’t ______ but a _______”
  • somehow less than the least
  • essentially
  • the whole truth and ______ but”
  • “______ to write home about”
  • wreckage
  • black conflagration
  • the real
  • formlessness
  • boundlessness
  • the desert / the blinding aspects of any extreme landscape
  • waste(s)
  • black t-shirt, black drainpipe denim, black racoons of eyeliner, black spikes or swoops of hair
  • bodiless object, but not that’s object’s essence; it’s non-body
  • “thanks for ______”
  • “the do-______ Congress [48th?]”
  • “know-______”
  • blankness
  • in / to no degree; no angle
  • worthless(ness)
  • cipher
  • reification as the first illusion
  • no trace
  • trivial / to be disregarded
  • the state of non-subjectivity; but not objectivity as it refers to intent or stance
  • nothing is = everything is present
  • springs from the demise of John Donne
  • lack of something or absence of anything?
  • the categorical gets lost in the dark
  • “this survey starts with nothingness at a global scale and then explores local pockets of nothingness”
  • “Not means other than, and other is merely a synonym of the ordinal numeral second” (Charles S. Pierce)


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