PAST MOMENTS OLD DREAMS. THE SECOND COLLAGE NOTEBOOK

 

From the introduction:

 

Depending on where and how my life was being lived at any given moment, dictated whether or not I added anything to its pages. While working on the first volume I felt restricted by the parameters I had set forth (it was imperative that each page have a construction that, both thematically and with layout, fulfilled the precise artistic and literary intent I wanted at that time). I began then the second volume with the design of putting whatever I wanted into it; there would not be any boundaries or restrictions. The book would be a kind of sketchbook for the sketchbook. The ideas and experiments would be rougher than the actual experiments and ideas I was conducting in the other volume. But most importantly, it was to be done quickly. I wanted to do one page a day, and for the first eight days I accomplished this goal. Each day I wrote a text and collaged with it whatever photos happened to fall into my hands, whether of my own making or from a newspaper. Some days I would create a text, others I would write the day’s events or transcribe a dream. I was consciously attempting to create spontaneously, and to use whatever was available at that moment in the hopes of courting the random, the unpredictable, and the unforeseen. It is a sketchbook in which I could place and explore the raw material, regardless of medium, intended for use in a “major project.” Therefore, depending upon the major project on which I might be working, dictated whether or not something was added to the sketchbook.

 

The book is an ongoing literary and artistic inquiry and experiment. It consists of collages, typescripts from literary works as they have progressed as well as raw word experiments, newspaper clippings, dreams of mine and from others, photographs and photographic experiments, and painterly experiments, to name the major preoccupations. Predominate mediums are photographs, typescripts, newspaper clippings, watercolor, ink, acrylic paint, and oil pastel. But what does all this amount to? The book traces, over ten years, my literary and artistic preoccupations. What can be found are excerpts from four novels and a book length manuscript of dreams; photographs of my artistic work in its various mediums from throughout these years; photographs of the many places I’ve been and of myself; and photographs of pages from the book itself in many stages of development as new pages begin to reference older ones. There is also cross-pollination, as many pages from both volumes reference each other. But this only represents the raw material that has gone into the book. It is the book itself that is the art, the work to be examined.

 

The following are a few images from the book.

All Copyright Michael P. Toussaint 2017