The average shot length in a contemporary film is 5.6 seconds. The average time between blinks is 2.8 seconds. How does this inundation of images change the way we watch a film, or engage with everything? Benjamin talks about how we learn to see through the apparatus, that our relationship to art is now mediated by technology that conditions us to 'see' in a particular way. In order to keep up with this apparatus we have to evolve, but this approach to art changes our approach to everything, the two realms are liquidated and blend into one another. The images that inundate our brains are becoming increasingly empty. They lack content. The 5.6 seconds of an average shot consists mainly of special effects, the images are not beautiful, do not capture anything new or exciting. We are not even looking at mediated reality, we are looking at mediated hyperreality. I realized recently that my attention span has drastically decreased to almost nothing. I can barely watch a contemporary film without stopping it or getting bored. I can barely sit in bed with a book without stopping every 10 minutes to do something stupid and irrelevant on the internet. In the (little) spare time I've had recently I've been watching old movies, good movies, movies with prolonged shots and good dialogue and little cutting and minimal sets. My attention span is getting a little bit better. I can pay attention to good art. My plan is to slowly cut out or minimize all forms of media that manipulate the way I see. I don't want my eyes and brain function in tandem with the appartus that presents the material. I guess its an illusory and short-lived victory, because in adapting my mind to 'good' art, there is little or no autonomy here either, just another adaptation to different standards of presentation and a different appartus with different values.
Lately I've been feeling animosity directed towards everything outside of myself, except for the best friend, the boyfriend, the cats. I seem to approach everything and everyone with a degree of suspicion and ennui. I have no energy to perfom in front of people anymore and I feel comfortable in my own body. And then other days I flip and feel uncertain and vaguely self-conscious in front of a world that I care about and feel self-loathing and anxious and a weird sticky discomfort with my own body. Both conditions are a reflections of the other; which is the reality? Am I projecting or introjecting? I guess these are two sides of the same fucking coin.
In general though, I feel good. I am attracted to tragic characters and realize that my life possesses little to no tradgedy. I love the feeling of my body under a dress, when my legs and muscles are tight and toned. I love the sprinkler on the front lawn of my apartment building, I like standing underneath it. I love touching bodies accidentally on the street and eating ice cream on hot pavement, bare foot. I like coming across friendly strangers who smile authentically during mundane transactions. Here is your prescription, here are your drugs, here is your tea, here are your books, here are your movies.
Unfortunately exam time sucks all creative energy out of me. All I can do is collect images and characters and record them but I can't figure out structure or form right now. Does form even matter anymore? The progress seems to have been...modernism - content/individual, concerns with form on the margins...post-modernism - no original content, all is form...now - lets reclaim content, simplify form, and be happy with the realization that nothing is new but individual experiences can still be beautiful and contribute to a collective attitude and moment. I like where poetry is moving. Everyone is incredibly self-deprecating in 'public' because they don't want people to think that they take themselves too seriously. Taking things too seriously is not good. But everyone secretly does take themselves very seriously. How can we not, what the fuck else do we have. The result is lovely to me.