online: 6 november 2014
modified: 5-6 november 2014
28 october 2014 amidst films and falling leaves...
...falling in clear air and bright sunshine... on a tuesday afternoon
beneath the trees encircling pond one... a roaring traffic sound...
mixed with fragments of human voice and of whistles... two women start
taking photographs of dazzling sun on water...
...a cloud of gulls circling and swooping where a swan with nearly
full-grown cygnets attracts people who are feeding them...
...now the sun is close to setting... and i've yet to reach the first random
point... so on i go...
...arriving at that spoint (the tumulus seat in memory of Ethel Copland Campbell
vegetarian socialist pacifist)... i look up at the
cloudless sky... in which i see a fast moving bird... a slowly moving
aircraft... and the new moon not seeming to move at all...
...now a man in white t-shirt accompanying a dog with grey fur and white patches...
both seen against dark green trees and meadow... yes everything is now in subtle colours... but can be seen via monochrome film as
black and white... so colour is unnecessary to perceiving shape and form...
but when the world is seen as poetry and colours the meaning and significance of shape is
included in our perception... and so we enter or become imagination itself... the
words lose something as they undo reality... or in some unspoken way
reveal world in its surreal parts as well as philosophic being...
...dusk begins ... too late to walk to distant second point so instead i walk to
nearby Parliament Hill before the city is in darkness...
...but when i get there it is night and there is a film crew in charge of bending supposed reality... with
lights and cameras and mikes and overpaid obedient people fitting the
visible and audible parts to a film director's idea of how others perceive
things... yet filmed image is as fascinating as it is alienating... the imposed world of
television ... a man i spoke with could recognise some of the actors
from a popular tv programme...
...but now it's over... in minutes they are packing up and the unbelieveable
unimposed reality (of nature in semi-darkness) rusumes... resumes... and the
wind is now cold in the darkness...
...on the way out of the heath i pass through zones illuminated by
temporary floodlights that are being switched off and put away in the hired
vans of the companies who provide and remove the alterations to parts of
nature that do not fit the story that is being sold and told in filmed sights and
sounds and movements all fitted to... (words missing?)
...and on return home there is news of a film of the life of Jack Howe the
industrial designer... organised by his daughter Susan Wright with her memories...
and those of others (such as me) who speak of Jack Howe with respect and informed
affection... he lived to be 92...
...and yes that was the truth of what he did... and why several of us worked with him as assistants or apprentices... in his modesty and rightness... his
way of extending modernism from the architecture of Le Corbusier and Walter Gropius to the design of industrialised
housing... and domestic and industrial appliances... from pullman trains and streetlamps
to clocks and cash machines and such... but always modest and sensible... to
humanise the use of things more than for any show or glamour...
...and now here i am late at night looking forward to seeing the film and reliving
those early days of industrial design... that still expanding occupation
few seem to understand... ('the design of WHAT?' people still ask... surely you
can't design everything?)... and those who do it (or study it) seem often to speak in sub-human
abstract words that keep the whole thing still a secret from all of us as suffering users...
© 2002, 2003, 2004, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2008,
2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014 john chris jones
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