Timefulness, Timelessness, Slowing Time

Timefulness as an element in art:

I am exploring how I relate to time, as an element in my artwork. I am noticing culturally how we relate to time, and how we might rethink time. I’m exploring time in art by: practicing stillness; using a timeful time signature in creating my work; making time for timeless time.

Considering Collapse of Time -> to what? Simultaneous Time. The only moment in which we can experience the past, present, and future is NOW, which is also the only possible point of choosing action. In each new now, my relationship to the past and to the future are transformed.

In the podcast “Lidewij Edelkoort on Why Doing Less Is More” on TimeSensitive in December 2019 [1], Designer and Trend Forecaster Li Edelkoort predicted a trend of slowing time; of people choosing to slow down. This was right before Covid-19 emerged. She suggests that “if we all thought more deeply about time the world would be a very different—and far better—place.” Edekoort considers time in some original ways. She experiences time differently in different places in the world where she works; New York, Paris, West Africa.

She also relates time to textile (Edelkoort’s forté is textile), “you can stretch time, you can double-weave time so you have two different time levels actually which connect, sometimes also in your work when you work intercontinentally, you can take time on the bias so it becomes something else altogether.”

Advocating that we think more deeply about time, she recommends that we “study ourselves in connection to time.…We’re just rushing through life as if death is the destination we want to be, and we don’t take the time to step back and to reflect on this.” She goes on to consider different time signatures, and how they fluctuate during our day, “It’s something very magic, how sometimes a few seconds can be so long and a few hours can almost not exist. That’s really weird. It’s all about the attention you give or how surprising something is or how beautiful something can be—or a person can be. … It’s hugely connected to what we experience.”

She’d just read “Timefulness: How Thinking Like a Geologist Can Help Save the World,” by Geologist Marcia Bjornerud, who puts time in beautiful perspective by considering the time scales of human beings, compared to the massive time scales of our planet.

This trend of slowing down has also been called the “slow movement,” and “slow living.” The Slow Movement aims to address the issue of ‘time poverty’ through making time to savor the moments of our life, creating a life of connectedness.

[1] Bailey, Spencer. “Lidewij Edelkoort on Why Doing Less Is More.” Time Sensitive, 4 Dec 2019, https://timesensitive.fm/episode/trend-forecaster-li-edelkoort-doing-less-is-more/