Marfa: Texas Catalogue with Title Glossary

MARFA: TEXAS by Jules McCue  [2011 – 2014]

See Trailer for film made to accompany this exhibition: Marfa Texas: The Hairy Man from the East [Utube],vid:WFtryvTahwc,st:0


6. Predella                            16. Rhyparos

Predella                                                                                                Rhyparos

“Here we have neither the depiction of the invisible nor the imitation of an appearance. It is the unrepresentable and the presence: the effective magic of matter as it is in itself, in its timeless existence before the image and depiction. A place of absence and of human traces, the wall is not a response as an ideal or an image would be, but in the identification of the spirit as the non-representable and of matter in all its nudity there is the persistence of the question above all else.”   [Youseff Ishaghpour, Antoni Tapies: Works/Writing/Interviews. Ediciones Poligrafa, Barcelona, 2006.p.86]

  1. Adhocism: A design which comes about, not by formulating new solutions to problems but by combining pre-existing elements to achieve a new result.

Even the mountaineer came back from the mountain, from sand, sea, the mineral world, water, empty-handed; Aun aquel que volvió del monte, de la arena, del mar, del mineral, del agua, con las manos vacías, [1]

  1. Adobe: Sun baked clay: unfired.

What can I say without touching the earth with my hands? Que podía decir sin toca sierra?[2]

  1. Ancona: An early type of Italian altarpiece, without folding wings but made up of numerous painted panels.

even the bellringer moving the sky on a cord, fell from the church through the dark of the graveyard; O aun el campanero que a mover en la cuerda el firmamento cayo de las iglesias hacia la oscuridad y el cementerio; [1]

  1. RetabloA painting or sculpture panel behind an altar.

And I pray that my eyes never shut, even for death: I who need all my vision to learn, No me cierren los ojos aun después de muerto, los necesitare aun para aprender, [3]

  1. Barbican: A fortified structure either detached or projecting from a city or castle wall and designed to protect the entrance to it.

Traveller, beware: keep a curious eye on the glooms of the highway, the mysteries crowding the walls. Por so, viajero, cuídalo con las tristezas del camino, con los misterios en los muros. [4]  

  1. Predella: [altar step]. A painting placed beneath the main scene or main series of panels so as to make a kind of plinth.

Ask me where have I been and I’ll tell you “Things keep happening.” Si me preguntáis en donde he estado debo decir « Sucede. »[5]

  1. Caravanserai: A building generally consisting of vaulted shelters round a court yard offering shelter to travellers along a caravan route.

I am glad to have come from such faraway country: . . . never dreaming of permanence, intent on my vagrant humanity, to live and unleaf like a tree. Estoy alegre de venir de tan lejos, de tan tierra: . . . sin esperanza de permanecer, decidido al humano transitorio, destinado a vivir y deshojarse. [6]

  1. Bozzetto: [rough stone] Strictly speaking, a small three-dimensional sketch in  wax or clay made by a sculptor in preparation for a larger and more finished work.

O fated to dark perpetuity, to singular being—imageless granite, matter made perfect, irreducible, cold. Ah ese destino de la perpetuidad oscurecida, del propio ser —granito sin estatua, material pura, irreductible, fría: [6]

  1. Durbar: An audience hall in India or Persia.

Among vanishing bodies, I alone sat down in the motionless train. Entre los cuerpos que partieron me senté solo en el tren inmóvil. [7]

10. Reliquary: A container for sacred relics. At dawn, I stumbled inside, looking for secrets, things lost in the coaches, Entre titubeando en la aurora: anduve buscando secretos, cosas  perdidas en los vagones, [7]

11. Enfilade: The alignment of the doors in a suite of rooms so as to create a vista through them. I am glad of the great obligations I imposed on myself. Estoy contento con tantos  deberes que me impuse, en mi vida [8]

12. Propylaeum: The entrance to a temple. By extension, the porch or entrance gateway to any important building. Many strange and material things have crowded together— Se amasaron extranos materiales: [8]

13. Fictile: Made of clay or of any substance capable of being moulded. The breaker of horses came back unhorsed, broken by death in a box; Aun el domador que volvió del caballo en un cajón, quebrado y fallecido [1]

14. Oubliette: A pit or shaft in the thickness of a wall of a fortress or one of the floors, used in medieval times as a dungeon or for the secret disposal of bodies. Because the hand’s work is a destiny and life shapes itself to their scars. Porque hacer fue el destinode las manos y en cada cicatriz cabe la vida. [1]

15. Chantry: A small chapel where Masses could be sung for the soul of the person who had endowed the structure. And I in the train, a dead smoke among improvident spirits, bent under the burden of so many deaths, felt lost in a journey in which nothing else moved but my own way-worn heart. Y yo en el tren como humo muerto con tantos inasibles seres,  por tantas muertes agobiado me sentí perdido en un viaje en el que nada si movió, sino mi Corazón cansada.[7]

16. Rhyparos: Rubbish and those things that are discarded. Time writes in the ciphers of water and rock for no one at all, Y que la edad escribe letras con agua y piedra para nadie, [9]

17. Matiere: The physical substance of a work of art. My penchant for loneliness—to keep to myself in the frailty of my personal whims. Mi inclinacion a sera solo yo mismo en la debilidad de mis placeres. [8 ]

18. Pastose: Thickly painted. That is why— water on stone—my whole life has sung itself out between chance and austerity. pore so—agua en la piedra—fue mi vida cantando  entra la dicha y la dureza.[8]

19. Bodegone: A Spanish painting whose subject is primarily still life, though in the background there may be an interior, with or without figures. How with my soul and my tears, I have cherished your obstinate soil, your destitute bread and your peoples; Como, hasta el  llanto, hasta el alma amo tu duro suelo, tu pan pobre, tu pueblo pobro, [9]

20 Vanitas: An allegorical still life, often featuring a skull, in which all the objects depicted are meant to be reminders of the transience of human life.  Bone-dry and taut, day’s drumskin, a sounding opacity: that’s how Spain was: an eyrie for eagles, flat- landed, a silence under the thong of the weathers. Era España tirante y seca, diurno tambor de son opaco, Llanura y nido de águilas, silencio de azotada intemperie. [9]

Reference for Titles: The Thames and Hudson Dictionary of Art Terms. 1984. Lucie-Smith, Edward. London.

All paintings are 600x600mm, oil on board. Completed between 2011 and 2014.

Excerpts from: Neruda Pablo. [1974] Five Decades: Poems 1925-1970: PABLO NERUDA. A bilingual edition and translatedfrom the Spanish by Ben Belitt. New York: Grove Press. [1]. The Bellringer [El Campanero], p. 327. [2]. Ceremonial Songs XIII [Cantos Ceremoniales], p.249. [3]. The Truth [La Verdad], p.311. [4]. The Traveller [El Caminate], p. 239. [5]. There’s No Forgetting: Sonata [No Hay Olvido: Sonata], p. 45. [6]. Skystones XXIII, [Las Piedras del Ciels], p.419.,vid:WFtryvTahwc,st:0

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