When we talk about things instead of doing meaningful work, Frank said, we replace the things that we can touch with the names we have given to those things and not to those things precisely, but to an image of those things that has little to share with the real things.
What I like about your drawings, he said to Julia, is the level of detail, that nothing escapes your memory. You do not draw something as you imagine but as it is. We should talk less and observe more.
He then returned to cutting a slice of his pizza, his fingers twisted in the movement, his eyes focused. When Julia said something, he did not answer, his hands and eyes one with the pizza.
The words mean nothing, the names mean nothing. We give names to things and replace things with names, to move things more easily, by pronouncing their name. Then we forget that what we are doing is a hoax, we forget that we are moving words and not things, and we lose sight of the qualities of each individual thing that we see, for such qualities make it more difficult to apply names to things. Each individual quality, Frank said, makes each individual thing different, unique. Names do not apply to unique things, therefore uniqueness must be forgotten and qualities and differences must be overlooked. Our vision, he said, is impaired by words for we see only what we can name and as we can name it. We talk in generalities and such generalities take us far from life.
“Names do not apply to unique things, therefore uniqueness must be forgotten and qualities and differences must be overlooked.” I like that. It’s so true!