Last week my joy at being in Sydney transcribing Miller’s letters was pure and unabashed. I’m certain the purity of the experience was because I have now given up my day job and am focusing on Miller…and family. On arrival home from Sydney last Wednesday night the lake, that is in my mind the place of Miller emersion, receded into a misty distance as family members were hospitalised that night and in the next few days – not one but two! In between the admissions there was the airport departure for my son who has begun his 2010 World Circuit. Consequently the emotions of the last few days have kept the lake at a distance.
So today I put on a Tchaikovsky Symphony as mentioned in the last Miller letter I read in Sydney – and I approached the lake.
Knowing that my research journey would be interrupted over the last few years I set myself a goal to read, listen to and see as much as I could of all the textual references Miller made in his letters. This would do two things, provide me with an insight into the works seminal in Miller’s development as a man and artist and enrich the research journey – not to mention providing me with access into new worlds. Also these texts were easily accessible and could be read anywhere or so I thought. The reality is philosophy is not for the train journey into work – there is no space on a train for a mind to dwell with appropriate care. My goal was somewhat thwarted but did begin even if on stumbling feet.
What I do find with research is that you are often left out on the high tide mark for some months without access to primary materials or without access to contacts and then quietly, almost without you noticing, the waters start to rise. On Thursday night last week it was brought to my attention that the Peter Pinson Gallery, was holding an exhibition titled ‘Sydney Painting 1958-1964: The Robert Hughes Years’ which included Miller. Now Peter Pinson was one name among many first introduced to me when I interviewed Nick Waterlow in June 2008. I hadn’t made contact with Peter, or others whom had been suggested in that interview. Partly because 2009 was lost to me as a research year and partly because as a researcher, who is green-around-the-gills, you want to be very ‘ready’ to meet these people who hold knowledge you desire and whose esteem you regard highly.
Today with Tchaikovsky in the background, and others from my eclectic and limited classical collection, I have sent Peter Pinson an email introducing myself.
The waters are rising, the lake is at my feet and my toes are wriggling in delight.