July 19, 2004

The hunger artist

Pyschogeography has two senses. There are two (in)disciplines, and Luke is a master of both.

Just as he's an expert guide through the between-spaces of the city, so he's a practised navigator through different psychic spaces. Some time ago, he wrote that part of the reason he set up heronbone was to deal with his moods, to log them, to track them.

Detailing the Mood very precisely, becoming the Mood, letting it speak, is a way of stepping outside it, a step towards containing it.

Intensive cartography. Spinozism.

Posted by mark at July 19, 2004 07:19 PM | TrackBack


Posted by: Chris Needham at July 20, 2004 08:47 AM

Hmmm, being bored by Luke's writing tells us more about you than it, I suspect.

Or perhaps you're bored by my writing abt Luke. The only apology I'll make is for failing to do his writing justice, since Luke's undoubtedly one of the best writers on the internet.

Posted by: mark at July 20, 2004 09:36 AM

hmm. totally agree about psychogeography having 2 senses, but i find the explorations of city as mind much more interesting than those of mind as city. Precisely detailing and becoming the mood has been done to death. Canonical I know, but modernist projects like Ulysses and The Waves took that particular vein of impressionistic, maybe even solipsistic writing to a logical extreme.

What's so great about heronbone at its best is the level of interaction and empathy with London. he brings the city alive, he understands it in a way which erases the distance between self and landscape. regarless of the writer, i think that approach seems far more forward and outward looking than the logging and charting of moods.

the problem i had with London Orbital is that the inchoate personal ramblings - the author's stylised sense impressions - seem to overwhelm his feelings of and for the city.

Posted by: Jay at July 20, 2004 11:20 AM

But surely the key thing is that it's BOTH?

Agree with you about Sinclair; Luke kicks his ass...

Posted by: mark at July 20, 2004 01:05 PM

Yeah, of course it's both. I just meant that it's a fine, fine balance to attempt to maintain and nearly all writers veer more into one side than the other and that given i prefer, as in the blogosphere, that subject takes preference over author - to use an extremely unfashionable word!

Posted by: Jay at July 20, 2004 02:40 PM

Yeh, I agree ---- but I think the benefit of Luke's writing on moods is that they too are seen as elements of exteriority ....

Posted by: mark at July 20, 2004 05:44 PM