Maider López

Ixiar Rozas: In Situ, 2012

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DIE URSACHE. THINGS

1. Iturriondo fountain. Gernika

A body moves from side to side to the rhythm of each step. A beautiful morning, I don’t know exactly at what time, I put my visor on my head, leave the writing room and go outside. [1] Steps, spatial lines, temporal lines, a narration. Soon I come to a fountain. They say that Maritxu dressed up as Bartolo and Bartolo as Maritxu, and that they decided to celebrate themselves, compose a song based on the traditional one. Malleable and porous song to be sung by a celestial choir, but also added decadent karaoke. They saying it as if it were a spring, a contiguous mantra. A dog takes a drink at the fountain. He looks up at the clouds. When the water, that common good which is so mistreated, rebels, it shows its indomitable self. Floods are not a whim of nature. I imagine a country submerged in water every day of the year, any invisible city. The dog steps on a stone. Fill the fountain with white wine and let it run.

2. Level crossing. Gernika

I would like to organize a wedding at this place. A royal wedding without royalty. A ceremony that intertwines everyone who has nearly been run over on these tracks. Survivors. A wedding that puts the survivors on one side and the people who built the railroad on the other, separated by a line of oblivion. The ceremony would end with: “I declare you…”. This text is not premeditated and if I had to write it again I’d leave it as it is.

3. Rosario’s stall. Market. Gernika

Talking about a photo album may seem old hat. An album with bodies, faces, hands, feet, fingernails, teeth, hair, bones and marrow, in the middle of the immaterial age, the lack of bodies, smells, innards, of your flesh and mine in the dead of night. Occupying a rectangular space once a day. Occupying that space, filling it with bodies, with things. Placing yourself in the centre of the rectangle and from there, looking at all of the angles of the lives affirmed by their presence.

4. Letterbox. Betrokolo. Mundaka

A letterbox can be a home for ants and insects. I walk, I trace a line of time and space, a diagram for ants and insects. Out of the redness comes the blue. [2] From inside the letterbox I look outside. I listen to the murmur of the water. It seems like a very fertile stream. Dogs barking, lots of dogs. In this movable choreography, there is no staging, the situation falls into place at each step. I could also say Out of the blue comes the redness and think that things could have a slight feminine accent with the scent of meat.

5. Rocks at Txatxarramendi

Medusa was beheaded for her beauty and also to use as a defensive shield. The legend of Medusa has been used since then as a symbol of unity and as the face of brutality. Turned into a shield, she becomes a guardian, a protector. It is said that language, our words, will turn into stone if we don’t look at them in the face. It is said that money is made of stone from all of the times we have looked at it in the face and that it is waiting for someone to redeem it. Her, the bodiless mask, the mask in search of a headless body. The encounter happens at the edge of the sea. There are shears and now she is looking at us from a rock.

6. Boat to Laida. Txorrokopunta. Mundaka

I ask someone to tell me a memory from their childhood, and memory that begins here. “Everyone tells me that I took a boat ride after I was born, when I was only five days old. I flailed my arms around and since I had long fingernails, I scratched myself and began to cry very hard. My sobs bothered though woman sitting beside me, she wanted to enjoy the landscape. The woman changed seats, I stopped crying and by that time we had arrived.”

7. Banister, The Watchtower. Mundaka

Ways to use a banister:

  1. Touch it
  2. Slide down it
  3. Salk on tiptoes
  4. Pass by without touching it
  5. Hang from it
  6. Suck it
  7. Lie down on it
  8. Break it
  9. Take a piece of iron
  10. Use the piece of iron to break a paving title
  11. Use the piece of iron to hit someone
  12. Use the piece of iron to hit someone without hurting them
  13. Skate
  14. Coat it with oil and cook on it
  15. Cover it with class and build a fort

8. Ballcourt, The Watchtower. Mundaka

Once I put my hand inside a sculpture by Basque artist. It was a metaphysical space in the shape of a ballcourt. The iron was cold. We were separated by years, time and an imaginary ball speeding past the two walls that made up the rectangle. My hand filled its empty space, in a compulsive horror vacui. Someone is walking slowly around the perimeter of the ballcourt. From there, to look at all of the angles of the lives affirmed by their presence. Die Ursache, the cause, there is no Ursache.[3] The things slide and are still there.

9. Bermeo Town Hall

We are Moors, writes Joseba Sarrionandia, we are Moors among the mist. We too are Moors, he says, all of us are Moors to other people. He writes that there are good Moors and bad Moors. “We are not all the same, not all Basques are the same either. You’re black, says the owner of the house, so that the black man has to say that not all black people are that black.” [4] Sailors separated by the line of oblivion. Die Ursache, the cause. (Ur)gauza, the thing of water. I listen to the murmur of the water. I once wrote about the atopia, my way of referring to the lack of spaces and utopias that would enable a transformation? Changing something for nothing? I recall that I wrote: we live the atopia in the increasingly privatized streets of our towns and cities, with the feeling that the ground is moving below our feet, with an epidermal discomfort. Now, wherever you are, I hope to continue reading you, but particularly, I wait for. When our eyes meet, is it night or day?

 


[1] ”Translation from the Spanish of the beginning of the Robert Walser”, El paseo (1997), Siruela, Madrid.

[2] I am referring to the sentence “Out of kindness comes redness” an excerpt from Tender Buttons: objects, food, rooms by Gertrude Stein (1914).

[3] Interpretation of an excerpt from Cixous, Hélène (2009) El amor del lobo y otros remordimientos, which in turn refers to an autobiography by Thomas Bernhard.

[4] Sarrionandia, Joseba (2010), Moroak gara behelaino artean?, Pamiela, Iruñea, p. 702. Translation from the Basque.