Sunday, May 31, 2009
Posted by Ellie Brown at 6:59 PM
Saturday, May 30, 2009
In the next day or two I will finish uploading all of the audio representing each of the days. The book will be uploaded and for sale on blurb.com in a matter of weeks. Stay tuned.
To come completely clean about the project, Zach and I did become involved around the time of the honeymoon and had been navigating both a real and a conceptual relationship at the same time. When the conceptual relationship ended, the real one became more difficult because there was no script to follow and it was just me as me and him as him. There was often confusion around making decisions between the balance of the workload and our real-life relationship. Now that he is leaving and frantically trying to finish his writing for this project and other things, there is no more room in his life for the real relationship. What is ironic to me is that in the script, I am the one who leaves town and in real life it is he.
I am quite sad that our real relationship had to end in such a weighty and sudden manner. What did I learn from this? Don't pretend to be intimate with someone for the sake of art because real intimacy may get in the way of the work. No, I don't regret getting personally involved at all and I do think it made our scripted relationship more believable. The problem lies with separating the work from the personal. For example, now that it's over I have to proceed with any future presentation of the project (including the book) on my own. I don't have Zach's writing and don't know if I ever will.
Normally when one ends a relationship, there is not a long trail of writing, audio and photographs documenting time together. This is not the case here and for now, these are all sad reminders of what we created and who we were together.
Posted by Ellie Brown at 8:11 AM
Wednesday, May 27, 2009
Tuesday, May 19, 2009
Monday, May 18, 2009
The time for the real ending of the project is coming up quickly. This is not the ending of the capsule relationship w which already occurred and felt a bit anti-climatic and unresolved, but the ending of a real and working relationship. Because Zach is going away for the summer and has plans that don't sound like staying within proximity of me in the fall, it seems as if our working relationship is finished.
I certainly cannot collaborate with someone who doesn't even have phone or internet for two months this summer!
This is very sad to me because I did (and still do) have grand plans for the project and now I feel that they are squelched because of his absence. I don't feel comfortable taking on the entire project on my own, though at times, I may have to and have already.
I am also losing contact with my friend and partner. This to me is a much bigger loss then the capsule relationship ending. It's going to be a huge re-adjustment to get used a life without him to talk to, plan, work with and hang out with, especially since we've met it's been a constant and intense period of time together.
We learned that by playing a relationship, we actually formed a relationship to both of our surprise.
I am giving this ending a thumbs down.
Posted by Ellie Brown at 11:24 AM
Friday, May 15, 2009
This is FIVE from "Ten Months"
"She now understands that it is perfectly possible to forget who one has been and what one has accomplished.
Continuing the piece requires great effort. It is her voice. It is her body. It is painful being inside and outside simultaneously."
I couldn't have said it better myself.
Posted by Ellie Brown at 3:33 PM
Wednesday, May 13, 2009
Monday, May 11, 2009
We have finished recording our audio impressions of the project and I am hoping we can have them up for public listening in the next week or two.
The audio is a really nice supplement to the blog and photos because we are talking about expectations, things that occurred, feedback and our own emotional involvement. I am really looking forward to having the audio become absorbed into the whole of the project.
Now we are working on putting a book together with the photographs, my writing and Zach's writing. This seems like it may indeed be the final product of the project since Zach is going away and I'm not sure that I want to take on what was a collaborative project myself. This may change or course, but for now the book is the thing.
It is really hard to have such high hopes and ambitions for a project and then realize that they may not be entirely possible due to life situations. As an artist, that is a bitter pill to swallow.
Posted by Ellie Brown at 11:14 AM
Thursday, May 7, 2009
The point of conversation between Zach and I now is primarily revolving around how much to reveal about the depth of the project and its impact and our personal lives. It has totally turned around the way in which I have been considering this project. Now I see that it IS necessary to include personal information in order to talk about the project honestly and show the road that it went down due to some significant outside factors. I think that these facts put the project in a whole new framework and though it may not be ideal or comfortable for us, we need to address all of the factors involved. Yes, I'm being vague....until I figure out how to write about things in an intelligent and graceful manner. I am happy that this river isn't a shallow one.
Posted by Ellie Brown at 1:33 PM
Monday, May 4, 2009
When I shot the final picture of Zach and I in the relationship, I had Ingmar Bergman's Persona on my mind. There were so many shots that have stuck in my mind, even though I haven't seen the film in years and years. I think I should take the time to re-watch it now and see if the images are as I remember them.
Posted by Ellie Brown at 11:14 PM
Now that the project is over officially, more feedback is starting to roll in. It is something that I really appreciate hearing and actually want to hear more of if you care to share.
I had a very interesting conversation yesterday with a woman who has been following this project since the very beginning and had expressed concern for my emotional well-being in terms of being to separate the fictional from the real because I am not an actor. We discussed how real feelings could evolve out of a fictional situation like a capsule relationship because of the simulation of the real. In her mind, it has to do with the feelings of loving to be in love and having the satisfaction of someone mirroring you and your behavior. This is something that I hadn't thought about before. That Zach and I get along in real life and therefore it was easy to slip into acting out the feelings of love; especially on the third day in the park with the marriage proposal. Being loved fictionally induced real feelings that I wouldn't label as 'love' per se but are more akin to warmth and caring. It's so interesting to me how that if Zach and I had met in real life under real circumstances, we probably wouldn't have formed such a close bond and it's ironic that in playing out the feelings of a real relationship conceptually, we developed actual caring towards the other person. I wonder if under a tight scrutiny, if we somehow started to become the very thing that we were looking at critically in the project?
I love analyzing the complexity of this!
Posted by Ellie Brown at 11:02 AM
Saturday, May 2, 2009
I love when Zach and I go out into public together and either of us are recognized through the project. On the receiving end of that, I still feel weird being identified as his conceptual ex-wife and not me, Ellie Brown the artist. (I guess that was the whole problem in the conceptual relationship to begin with; the loss of my personal identity into that of wife and mother). Point taken.
I think Zach doesn't mind being recognized as part of the project as much, but on the other hand he doesn't like his real persona to be as public as I'm used to having mine being. It's becoming an interesting dynamic. Hopefully we'll go back to being Zach and Ellie as people, not characters in a conceptual relationship, though if we pick up more press and exhibits, we may forever be stuck in these roles.
We've started recording our analysis of each day which I would like turned into podcasts. I'll keep info on that posted here. I think the interviews will be a nice addition to the written and visual aspects of the project. Would you subscribe to our podcasts? Yes!
I'm a little apprehensive about Zach going away for the summer to work and leaving me to bear the work load of whatever opportunities may arise for the project. It's not something that we anticipated when we began the whole thing.
Posted by Ellie Brown at 11:21 PM