Where does beauty reside?

March 11, 2014

Is it the little boy in me that sees “fun” while looking at piles of dirt, sand and gravel? Is it the ‘“older” inner adventurer that conjures up mountains to climb? Or, is it the mature artist that simply sees a simple elegance of form.

Regardless of whomever was in control, when the truck and trailer finally departed after depositing over 90 tonnes of rock, I stood astounded and saw — above all else — beauty created in the awkward heaviness of the construction process.

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During the past month, various grades of base were delivered to the tennis court. After the 40mm crushed road base was spread out, levelled and rolled, the resultant surface was — not only a level playing field — but a wonderful grey canvas for the depositing of the remaining two grades: 20mm and 5mm.

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There was a moment when I felt like pulling the tail on academic art critics and thought of publishing an article in some prestigious art journal stating how these were not just randomly placed piles on a tennis court, but deliberately placed, pre-mediated, mathematically determined mounds of graded aggregate on a horizontal plane where their separate textures, slopes, folds, and vertical protrusions through a horizontal plane registering 7.5 on the Howel grey scale, represented, in an abstract, stylised format, how the human animal mind can differentiate spatial relationships within the confines of the enclosed parameters of a volumetric expanse juxtaposed with, and in contextual partnership with a foreground, middle ground and distant viewpoint as seen by, first, the static observer and, secondly, the moving observer as she/he moves around and in-between each pile, all the while drawing unconscious and intentional comparisons between one’s ancestral mythos of landscape and one’s current social-economic-spiritual-cultural indoctrination and their separate, yet perhaps, joint influence on one’s acceptance or not of climate change.

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Yet, in the end, like all inquisitive children everywhere, I clapped my hands when the tractor driver smashed into each pile and destroyed whatever it was that needed destroying.

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And in the process creating a new beauty.

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