28 May 2008

Another trial

15:1115:4215:4415:51I replaced the threaded polystyrene balls (see "Watching the tides") with another foam like substance: popcorn - a biodegradable form of polystyrene I thought.

At low tide (2:22pm) the sea looked very quiet. At about 3pm I marked the edge of the water with two sticks: to hold the thread and mark the water level (image 1).

The tide started to come in again and the waves showed their full power: image 2 and 3. The threaded popcorn looked nothing but fragile - it jammed and was torn apart.

After about forty minutes the water level was high enough to submerge the sticks - a last bit of the floating thread still swimming with the waves: image 4. It will eventually get loose and float away.

I got a big laugh for this from my companion. - Well... this is how my work develops.

24 May 2008

Drawn by the wind

Drawings in the sands of Spurn made by wind and water. (Negatives)


A friend from Leeds, Max, came over to Hull and together we visited Spurn yesterday.
The sand at the Point was full of caterpillars. Some of them were on the edge of the water and seemed to be keen to get into it. Others tried to climb a sandy slope and reach the grass above. Max filmed their Sisyphus-like struggle. It was a pointless task: when we looked again 3½ hours later they were still at the same spot but didn't move anymore... Though they left their mark - on the skin of my neck. Some of their tiny poisonous hairs must have been flying about. They can cause rashes. They did and it itches.

More about caterpillars on Spurn or here's a video.
Images of: Brown Tail Moth & caterpillar

7 May 2008

Cotidal lines in the North Sea

Also in April I read a book about how lunar cycles influence living organisms: "Moon Rhythms in Nature" by K-P Endres & W Schad. There I found this map which shows how tidal waves in the North Sea move counterclockwise in circles. High tide runs along the east coast from Edinburgh to Bridlington. An hour later it arrives on Spurn to then turn eastwards to another continent - to the shores of Holland, Germany and Denmark - da capo al fine.

5 May 2008

It's rainy

April provided excellent weather to stay inside and read. For instance some articles about climatic change in a German scientific journal (Forschung & Lehre 2/07). The texts are written in a sober style which I found good to read. I remember hearing some of this some twenty years ago in a physics lecture. One writer compares the task ahead of us with tiding the Augean Stables or rather that the Augean Stables are a perfume shop compared with what lies ahead of us.
I think there is a social aspect in all of this as well. It has something to do with the rapid technological development over the past 100 to 150 years and that humans - morally and emotionally - are barely able to keep pace. "The problem is not the atom bomb, but the heart of the people" Einstein said.

In a dialogue with F Mennekes Beuys states:
"[…] The only thing that is worth elevating is the human soul. I now mean “soul” in the extensive way[...] not only emotional life, but also the powers of realization, the capability of thought, intuition, inspiration, I-consciousness, and the power of the will. All these are phenomena which have been seriously damaged in our day.* They must be saved. Consequently, everything else is saved anyway. Without these very thoughts it makes no sense so to say, to try and grow better potatoes."
Beuys on Christ. A Position in Dialogue / Friedhelm Mennekes - Joseph Beuys (1984)

*Ralph Turner calls it "anaesthetised society" when writing about Julie Cook's work.