the transcendental waterfall, 120 cm x 90 cm, mixed media on canvas, 2010
and how should they explain it? by not explaining. thus is it called ‘explaining.’
as a lamp, a cataract, a star in space
an illusion, a dewdrop, a bubble
a dream, a cloud, a flash of lightning
view all created things like this. -Diamond Sutra, Chapter 32
the waterfall (or cataract) is a static yet liminal space. an object that is not an object. yes, water falls from one point to another, at a near constant rate, yet the phenomenon of falling water depends on the rate of evapotranspiration and the resolution of drainage and pressure systems. the transcendental waterfall
mimics this liminality, acting as both a static space and an energized space captured and frozen in time, much like a photograph of a waterfall. the title ‘the transcendental waterfall’ is borrowed from a john fahey song of the same name.
the transcendental waterfall
was painted in berlin during the winter of 2010, in a studio without heat. i bicycled there each day over groovy ice and painted until i couldn’t feel my hands any longer, or about 45 minutes. the painting retains this icy energy, this charged yet static silence.