We conclude our week-long focus on Recovering Place: Reflections on Stone Hill, by Mark C. Taylor by featuring some of the book’s stunning photographs along with excerpts from the book.
Divided into short chapters focusing on a specific theme or idea (Modern, Abstraction, Shadows, Raking, Prayer, etc.), the book includes images of and around Stone Hill, which is located in the Berkshire Mountains, where Taylor writes and creates land art and sculpture. We’ve posted some of the photographs below along with short excerpts from the chapters. (For more on the book, you can also read the book’s introduction) :
Craft can be fine art. Traditionally anonymous, craft, unlike so-called fine art, is more about the art than the artist. It is not the work of genius but the product of skill cultivated over many years of apprenticeship…. Although he never signs his art, the imprint of his hand is unmistakable.
But this moment never lasts, for it appears only by disappearing…. But light is never merely light, for illumination creates a residual obscurity more impenetrable than the darkness it displaces but does not erase
The Real is what remains when I do not and forever withdraws in my presence. Resisting my resistance without opposition, the real is the limit that makes creativity possible. Thinking is always after the real, which can never be properly comprehended, calculated, or controlled.
Our age is addicted to speed—not speed for the sake of efficiency, not speed for the sake of productivity, but speed for the sake of speed. According to the gospel of speed, the quick shall inherit the earth…. Eventually, we come to realize that speed distracts from what matters most. The real can be savored only slowly—the most radical thing we can do today is slow down.
What if we become discontent with discontent—gave up longing for what is not and accepted what is? Perhaps it would then be possible to “arrive where we started / And know the place for the first time.” Only then might we understand Zarathustra’s lasting lesson: “Happiness should smell of earth and contempt for the earth.”