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2010 Ralph Dorey

What is happening? Should there be some kind of explanation? Something needs to be built, it must be built, there is certainly a demand. The materials are demanding. Tumeric, copper, terracotta and varnish. The boxes are loaded, tiles are counted out and ropes and looped into great hanks like openings or blessings, one on each shoulder. A knighthood. Tired of all of it, working in silence, in meditation. Absolve this demand for things to be made. It is a beautiful mining community that we will establish here. It is a resource. An education tool. Architecture has the capacity. Jean Prouve’s house on the side of the hill is a great response. Travel out steadily and deal with what presents itself, prevail not against but with, not in spite of but beside. Make space? A ridiculous non-sequitur for sure, but something in it is true all the same. Blame it all on the objects. Blame it all. Engage. Old Buck Mulligan knew to draw out the meaning from things and to use these things to gee the point across, is it a soap in the wash bowl or as a Tom McCarthy suggested, something all the more sinister in a chamber-pot? The cloth covers it so its all in the telling. “Buck Mulligan quick-changes from priest to military doctor, peeping at an imaginary stool sample floating in what he’s up to now presented as an altar-bowl and, covering it quickly up again, sends the sick man (or horse) who made it back to barracks before mutating back to priest once more.” But what to do now? This work is all done, nearly a year now at the time of writing. This is the best place for it. Somewhere between an object and a building and a landscape, and now bound up in the pages of this book. Its no so much a manual for survival as an example of something survived. Perhaps that is best described as an adventure story. It is also useful to bare in mind Martin Heidegger’s disclaimer in Being and Time. “The expression ‘phenomenology’ signifies primarily the methodological conception. This expression does not characterize the what of the object of philosophical research as subject-matter, but rather the how of that research” Cast of Revival is concerned with a way of approaching something, folding around and unstoppable. Like a broadcast. So that perhaps answers the question of “what happened?”

Wednesday 13th October 2010 Ralph Dorey

15th January 2010 proposal: Schwartz Gallery title: Cast of Revival I think its about spreading out Stopping and spreading out Carrying Delivering something Moving it to its place of use But having various protocols, - or even simply the ability to improvise - for potential situations, climates, circumstances. To stop and survey, to record. Topography. It is to be prepared, but to have a larger whole that contains dedicated agents, the demarcation of responsibility. Its being part of a team, to be words in a sentence. The etymology of the word team being traced back to expressions meaning to pull or to draw. So it leading something and supplying its motion, its energy. And I’m maybe interested in the jig that lets that happen with ease, with clarity and precision. Not just supplying to force but the reasoning. The application. Ultimately though its about moving forward. About progressing. But not about the end, not about completion which is stopping. A pausing on the road is not stopping.

“Part of my task was to arrange for a boat to be despatched on ox-wagon in pieces together with four Indian carpenters, who were to put it together on the very unfriendly shores of Lake Rudolf [...]. The safari took place from six to ten in the morning, when we did eight miles; two miles an hour. Then we outspanned, that is to say we stopped in a place preferably with water and grazing. From four to six we went another four miles - a total of twelve miles a day.” “The dam, consisting by now of macro-seeds that are hooked together and further augmented by true organic growth, begins to catch the first spring runoffs. Seeds mulch, topsoil, and other organic principles are captured by it; the dam grows both literally and figuratively. Within three to six seasons it has grown into a compact area of vegetation and a permanent trap for capturing topsoil.”

14th November 2010 There is a great shocking bulk to the ship A hulk, a slave ship, never running with, always running against, occasionally running away. Lost and unattainable. Lock and Barrel. A horrifying and dumb image of Modernity. Piled deep in a hole in the ground is a stack of fiction. A depth charge is for sounding out aquatic space. Is this still the subterranean? Omar Sharif once played Captain Nemo in sprawling and heavy multi-national adaptation of Jules Verne’s The Secret Island. Sharif makes Nemo feel like Robert Smithson whilst on this island that is little more than a dot, it has no identity of its own, its point built upon, or rather a point on which to pivot, to work a crane that will bear timber and facilitate repairs. This is a point at which to repair. It is a state of repair. Repair to this point... Underwater: An explosion, a vacuum, an absence. Outspan, contract. Repatriate. The talk always goes that empires last till they reach a natural end, then they pull back in like the tide. This should be out, the tide pulls out and reveals the terrain underneath. It feels so much safer to think of the tide in that manner, from the point of view of the shore. To think of it in the other manner, from the point of view of the ocean is quite terrifying, the sheer horrific enormity of it, the mass of water, one thing. The Empire. Not pink but blue going down to black. Nemo fought it and was defeated and so retired, leaving and abandoning. Back to the island to enter a state of revival, never to be revived, rather die from radiation and gut shot and volcano. Still but drifting, limp.

A tree floats down stream perpendicular to the current and lodges violently in the building

Cast of Revival, exhibited at: “Ralph Dorey and Jonathan Lewis� Schwartz Gallery, London. 20 . 01 . 2010 - 31 . 01 . 2010.

Things not included in this publication: Rebellion as a state Micro architecture Compression, balance, ideals The Black Tent The Alpine Butterfly Speculative cartography The congregation as organisation of both people and space The Busses of Jones The proposition that sculpture need demonstrate its own going. This need not be limited to the narratives of construction or the potential for collapse, but includes also the capacity of a work of art to acknowledge its position as a something fluid. This does not mean to anticipate and confound future engagements as yet unknown, but to simply recognise them, as it need also acknowledge its own immediate abandonment upon being brought into the world. Most importantly the work of art should be aware of its state as an indentation, a sign of the passing agent.

Cast of Revival  
Cast of Revival  

Artist's book