A plane is a flat surface that is infinitely large. It has zero thickness.
We are taught to believe that the world is an objective three-dimensional space, and that it can be mapped using concepts such as “points” and “lines” (e.g. this point represents where you are and that point represents where you are not; this line represents the boundary where this thing ends and where that thing begins; this thing is close and that thing is far). This Cartesian view of reality is so deeply ingrained in our sense of perception that we rarely question its truth. And yet upon closer inspection, there is something strange about its logic.
A point is defined as purely a location, without any width, length, or depth — and a line is merely defined as a series of points. In other words, a point is something without any apparent reality, and a line is a series of those very same somethings, none of which have any apparent reality either.
Elements of perception
Thus we arrive at the geometric concept of a “plane” — a flat surface that is infinitely large, but which has zero thickness (i.e. also without any apparent reality). In this sense, a plane can be understood as encompassing either nothing or everything, or neither, or both.
In our ordinary perception, we have the sense of certain things being “over here” and other things being “over there” (e.g. the mountains are farther away than the rock, the sky is farther away than the water). And yet, with a slightly different way of looking, we can perceive the plane of perception itself.
In this altered view, everything we perceive is equidistant with everything else — merely phenomena arising and falling in perception, which encompasses every discernable something all together at once.
This ritual explores this altered plane of perception — collapsing dust particles, objects, memories, histories, landscapes, and environments into a single surface that can be worked with as one — swept up, studied, smashed.
The peaceful lake is interrupted on a quiet summer evening by a sudden splash of water. A deer is shot with an arrow, and the kill creates a sudden splash of red.
Revealing the plane
In the living room of the old Main House, a camera is positioned looking through a sheet of glass. The day proceeds; the shadows move across the landscape. As evening arrives, the sheet of glass begins to reflect the interior. At twilight, we see half within and half without. At dusk, the outer world has vanished, and all we see is the inner room — a painting of two cheetahs in Africa, hung above a floral sofa.
The film transforms from timelapse photography to video as I walk into the frame with my grandfather’s hammer and smash the space that he built.
Breaking the frame
In the renovation of the Main House that followed in 2017, the wall where the cheetah painting once hung was demolished — replaced by an archway with a view from the front door of the house straight through to the lake in the “distance”.