Catalogue Essay, Vaughan PInxit, "Stillness A Meditation in New Media Art"
Stillness and Stasis
Our apparent inability (or unwillingness) to grasp the scope and reach of the problems of ecology are evidenced by today’s ever worsening series of environmental indicators. Not only do we cause the ecological problems that threaten us today, but also they are now inherent in our world that correspondingly forms the way we are. A world and a society built this way cannot assure anyone or anything a ‘future for the future’.
But the end of this way is fast approaching. We must find multiple strategies to break into, and ultimately out of, this circular wrench of destruction, re crafting ourselves to become new kinds of socio-environmental subjects (new kinds of citizens). This will require many and multiple methods, actions, approaches and inputs, which must tap all of our disciplinary strengths. The experimental arts can definitely not be excepted.
In a timely fashion therefore, Vaughan Pinxit reminds us that “the quality of stillness” (that he engenders via his work) “transcends cultures, nations and religions”. Posed in this way his work can be understood as a particular kind of connective, cultural project, aiming (be it in a small way) to help us become those new types of subjects. And whilst Vaughan may not directly foreground the ecological project, his close commitment to ‘Engaged Buddhism’ reveals a covalent hand.
The all-engaged Thích Nhất Hạnh reminds us though that, “for things to reveal themselves to us, we need to be ready to abandon our views about them.” And so Vaughan has found his own potent use of stillness in this socio-creative journey that has he notes, ultimately “supported a quality, which I could not initially imagine”.
Dr. Keith Armstrong, Brisbane, 20/10/14