North Star (extract)
(published as a catalogue essay for an exhibition by Anton Hart titled North Star at the Experimental Art Foundation, Adelaide, 1996)


Now warm, now warm, now warm. And hours and days and weeks travelling. In the truck, the train, going away. Crossing the border, back and forth. In the rain, wipers scraping. The driver there, numb, paying all the notice in the world. Song in his mind. He’ll die, dying of us, all. He’s the angel. He’s the lover. He’s loved. Tender and attentive. He’s the fool. God bless him. And let him be, lone, a lone, alone. He’s in the open, behind the glass. The one to love, always. That one, who takes the wheel, who knows the risk of leaving, the danger of staying, and will speak, will speak the way, willing. In the country we can’t know. Love to the one. To the lover’s proper name (uttered, muttered), as a series. The lyrics, the initial(s) too, and the motif, maybe O’Keefe. (In 1929 Georgia O’Keefe went to New Mexico. This phrase: and on the other hand: relieved-words, for saving.) The Rest, the rest, resting. Guns at the gates. From above, the city a big number (O). A number, the grey lingering sky. The whole ear tongue. The longest shadow, today. Waterfall. Falling water. The visitor need not worry. The, that, a sailing boat. The most banal seashore, hard flat sand. So beautiful, so warm, so awful. A sailboat. OK, the plateau, that should, or could, be said, here, who is the one, the writer, always the ‘one’, who is said (and always too quick) in the text, who does this and that, is this and that (same as: the man, driving), goes along, and is forever ‘one’, a rift (riff), instead of ‘I’, & knows the eyes of the ‘I’ are avoided, shunned (in case). Is (then) too steeped in facts, like pruning the grape-vine. Like trying to forget. Now, it is almost Spring. The days slightly longer, like, still light at six. Down at the Palais drinking champagne. Watching the sky. And finding rain on the footpath and the car. The pleasure of the crowded room. A woman paints her lips. Very pink pink. The pink of Sunday. A Sunday pink. She’s all dress up. She’d, Eileen Gray, written in a notebook: “Comme une musique, une oeuvre ne vant que par l’amour dont elle témoigne (Like music, a work acquires its value only through the love it manifests).” The house, for well-being. “When the sea is rough and the horizon gloomy, one has only to close the large bay window to the south, draw the curtain, and then open the small bay window to the north, which gives on to a garden of lemon trees and the old village, to find a new horizon where masses of greenery replace the broad expanses of blue and gray.” Now warm, now warm, now warm. Everything bending, folding, by gesture (and, as gesture). The provisional house. The holiday house. Of the bed she said: “It has coloured sheets, so that the disorder will not be noticed when the bed has not been made.” She covered the balustrade with removable canvas so “that in the winter one could warm one’s legs in the heat of the sun”. You know, it is difficult to write of her, EG (eg), without bringing to bear affection. Without, that is, tampering. She did build ‘that’ house though, and the other one, even more her own: ‘Tempe a Pailla’ (again, using the ship; at this time she drove a MG, and wore a trouser suit with a bowtie; there’s a photograph of the mason, same one as E1027, handsome): from an old Provencale proverb: “Avec le temps et la paille, les figues mûrissent.” (With time and straw, the figs ripen.)

(All quotations from: Peter Adam, Eileen Gray, Architect/Designer, A Biography, Thames and Hudson, London, 1987, p. 205)