Video/Diary Brussels

For the last few months I feel I have done little creative work, apart from two sets of 35mm slides and some ideas for 16mm film loops. The latter were conceived some time ago but it’s now so long since I had the idea that I wonder if it’s worth actually making the work. Because thinking wasn’t followed immediately by making, the latter now seems all but pointless. The momentum that drives the thinking-making dynamic that the creative process thrives on has been broken, so that making now seems perfunctory, as if carrying something out to a set of instructions, without the urgency of testing and making the mistakes that drive things forward.

To fill the void I have decided to make a (video) diary, something I have often recommended to students who get blocked but which I have never done myself. Where to start? As I walked home from the Bozar in Brussels, having failed to get into the sold-out last day of the Laurie Anderson show, I passed an abandoned homeless person’s pitch, the abject remains of which exude, literally, the misery of homelessness. I often rehearse in my head politicians’ entreaties -I’m thinking of Tony Blair, but there are others- not to give money to beggars because it only ‘encourages’ them. I want to ask them: if you think it’s easy to sit all day on a pavement in all weathers, not knowing how much you will be given, you should try it for a day. Brussels has a serious homelessness problem, a lot of which arises from inefficiencies in processing migrants.

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