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[I've begun writing an essay on multiplicities. I'm giving myself a year to complete it. I will update this draft as I go.]

A friend asked about my aesthetic- if there's a core something in the various areas I work in. I found myself talking about multiplicities. They're in everything I do, from writing to art to poetry performance to videopoetry to dance, this layering of multiples - a subject approached from different angles in different styles, the same figure drawn again and again in different contexts with different colours, multiple readings of a single poem layered on top of each other sounding like echoes but actual separate readings, Final Cut filters layering multiple tracks of the same footage, a dance composed of reiterations that are separate takes - I am drawn to multiple representations of a unity, fascinated by the many in the one.

But I realized I needed a theoretical backbone. This will help make my website more cohesive. I am working on the vertebrae here.

(I'm obviously influenced by Deleuze's rhizomatics, and read the chapter "Rhizome" in A Thousand Plateaus, Capitalism & Schizophrenia, Vol 2 -it's rather underlined, so I know- in the early 1990s. By 2000 I had formulated a theory of writing in 'multiple styles' in one document, and perhaps confused a few of my friends with emails they couldn't quite follow since the text moved between poetry and metaphor to quotes and discursive discussion, from analytic to synthetic, incorporating perhaps a literary criticism style with a science writing style, amidst all the other stylistic approaches, along with a highly personal aspect too. This plethora is not quite Deleuze, who writes of multiplicity in a philosophical style, yet remains within the logic of his and Guattari's theory, even if they they come to the project of writing as 'multiples.')

A "theory of multiplicities that refers to no subject as preliminary unity."  (Deleuze 1991, 95)
Sep 2010

What do I mean by multiplicity?

Multiple styles and multiple approaches to a subject, closer to the way the mind comprehends.

But what is a style? What is an approach?

Oct 5, 2010

Multiplicity as a type of democracy.

Not like a virus, or cancer, multiplying. Multiplicity is not repetition. It does not create its sameness over and over. Multiplicity doesn't reproduce itself. It's not about cloning or an infinite mirror of regress.

To multiply and a theory and practice of multiplicity are two different things. One is not contained in the other. To multiply is a mathematics; multiplicity is a philosophical and aesthetic practice.

We might, rather, begin with the one and the many. Multiplicity is the many. I think of Plotonius, and theological thinkers influenced by him. The many has no hierarchy, though: multiplicity does not prioritize.

Multiplicity opens the field to the many: to the states of being various or manifold.

Oct 8, 2010

Multiplicity depends on there being more than one.

Everything in the world has multiple relations --- meaning there is no 'outside-of,' no 'separate-from,' no absolute.

Multiplicities are vectors that intersect.

A few posts from my blog, Rubies in Crystal, a sampler.
  • Parchment Figures: Doubles, Doppelgängers, Clones (a video)   April 8, 2010   direct link: Parchment Figures: Doubles, Doppelgängers, Clones A painter on painting. Or, I'm painting again! Yay! Wasn't a planned video, rather, thinking, many artists are showing themselves painting on-screen, let's put the camera on and get some footage, but I got talking, you know how it is, at night too though I managed to boost the light when I edited it, and now it's a bona fide video. Enjoy. Hopefully you will find inspiration here for your own art, and might consider posting your own video. Note: click on the base of the slideshow to start the slideshow (or in the middle to go to Picasa and see larger images).                                                                     
    Posted Mar 23, 2011, 2:57 PM by Brenda Clews
  • Mystical writings, ancient memories, Daphne, or Persephone (a small drawing)    December 6, 2009 Mystical writings, ancient memories, Daphne, or Persephone, 2009, 8"x11", 21.5cmx28cm, India ink, acrylic, oil pastel on archival paper. Sketch & poem here. Click on image for larger size. She is framed and on my wall. In it I see elements from different fairy and mythic tales, but she is Daphne, Persephone, organic, seasonal. She is composed from my imagination.  Steven said, 'I have only been able to give the picture a quick look.  But I enjoyed a strange chilliness – not in a sense of anything emotionally frigid, but something wintery, something gelid, something in the tree branches that suggested icicles.  And I loved the eyes.  Two such different eyes to have on one face, and both ...
    Posted Mar 23, 2011, 3:01 PM by Brenda Clews
  • "Green Goddess" Papier-Mâché Masque (slideshows of the making of a mask)   November 2, 2009 Chthonic goddess of the greening earth. Wrinkled, like tree bark, painted, an exotic glade. Process, the recycling of Nature, life emerging from death. An organic art. The mask's fronds as if growing out of the forest floor in the Spring. Papier-mache, mulch: paper, or leaves. The face as landscape; the face carrying the landscape with it. Flower colours framing her face; the iridescence of insects, sheen of dragonfly. Feathery wings, plumed serpent, vestiges of living vines. A vision of a Nature spirit, a Midsummer Night's Dream. Shaman of the forest. Tutelary guide in the rainforest. Jungle of the imagination. Then the Surreality of the sky-blue mask on the greening gold fields of her ...
    Posted Jan 1, 2012, 12:51 PM by Brenda Clews
  • Meridians of Culture (a poetry recording) July 7, 2009 Direct link to 'Meridians of Culture,' which may be freely downloaded.      (I have added experimental avanteguard music in the background: 'Lambkins Black,' by Alphacore, which carries a Creative Commons License. It may be found at Jamendo.)  It's my daughter's favourite of all my recordings, and I think it is mine too. More like a Joycean inner dramatic monologue. I am hoping it moves in the direction of a deeper, richer writing that hints at vast underlying energies the way stream-of-consciousness, surrealist and dream-time writing does... direct link: The Falling Room - Female Acoustic Artists, a one hour show (free streaming and download) "In this session" of his show, The Falling Room, Halder says ...
    Posted Mar 23, 2011, 2:59 PM by Brenda Clews
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Home    Green Fire    Different, yet Same    Soirée of Poetry    Videopoetry    Celestial Dancers    Photopoems    Birthdance    Bliss Queen    Bio    Life Drawings    Earth Rising    Creative Process    Multiplicities    Links    Comments