Tuesday, 13 March 2012

The view from here

It's not often I want to walk away from this job, and it has become a job, I no longer see it as a career. Did I ever? There were brief moments when I thought it could be so, now it has become just irritatingly depressing, an environment that sucks at my soul and distracts me from what I enjoy most, which of course is research.
If I were to really pin down why I dislike coming to work it would probably rest on the shoulders of two people in charge of IT. They are without doubt the vilest of people, two of the most dysfunctional human beings you can meet with such power. If they just once did their job effectively I would at least just manage to tick over, but I confess my ideal would be to focus on the older students, the ones who almost care as opposed to the ones who view art as a good conversation interrupted.

My sanity has been saved by the university library, my god that library has got not only some amazing books, but journals too. I love nothing better than plowing through some back copies of journals. I had a very productive tutorial, I had written down my questions, always do that because otherwise you get sidetracked and forget the main thrust of what you really need from the discussion.
On Saturday I managed to carve a couple of hours up town, primarily to see this amazing exhibition of Joan Mitchell's work at Hauser & Wirth.

Food for the soul, it really was. I also much prefer this gallery to their Saville Row one, it's in a disused bank on Piccadilly, I often think people don't realise all you have to do is push the door open and walk inside. It's like an oasis of sanity.

I meandered around Cork Street, but nothing much was on, the shops seem pretty desultory too, but that may have something to do with my playing shop my wardrobe earlier in the day.

I was very tempted by some of the Marni for H&M jewellery earlier in the week, but I decided that the jewellery wears you, rather than you wearing it, so I stuck to what I know instead.

I find that whole designer thing a sham really, girls queue for hours just to buy clothes to sell on eBay. The idea that true fans get a bite of the designer cherry is a misnomer, and if H&M think it gets the punters in they are mistaken. Talking of H&M I went to Monki, to suss it out for Kitty. I really could not see the difference between it and H&M, the fabrics were very poor and they had not been steamed so were very creased on the hangers. Not a good sign.

My other distraction is very left of field, it involves my father who I have not spoken to for over 10 years. However a curious chain of events left me with a decision to make and I decided to draw a line and move on. He is back in London, unwell of course hence his return. Say what you will about the NHS but people flock to use it.

I have exchanged a few emails, and will meet during the Easter break. I was reflecting on how different my identities are with my parents, with my mother it has become superficially polite but functional, we no longer delve any deeper, too much damage has been done.

With my father it is clearly deeper, not on an emotional level, but certainly intellectually, he continues to work despite his age, because he has no money. But it means he constantly challenges himself which makes for a more erudite discourse, plus of course he loves marking work, so now both Daisy and I will be availing ourselves of his moderation!

And tempting though this was as a reason to get back in touch, it was actually more to do with his failing health and proximity that swung it in the end. I decided my parents were as bad as each other really, so why not give him one last chance. The down side is one of my sisters is in touch too but baby sister refuses to talk to him, so I have to constantly check myself not to mention it when I'm with her. Life is never less than very complected is it?

1 comment:

materfamilias said...

Life if very complicated, absolutely. And you've got stresses in a number of different areas with your teaching, your own studies, and on the family front, especially with your father. Still, I do think it's really good that you're pursuing the connection so that, at the very least, your curiosity will be satisfied and you'll know you've done as much as you can in reconnecting.
And that art, those galleries, that must all be considerable solace. Even just looking at the photographs of these canvases in that serene space I feel myself breathing more deeply. . .