Well, the U.S. Postal Service has gotten very hip ~~ although this post will show you just how much of a geek I am (a philatelist at that! ~ don't laugh!), you have to check out the stamps I just bought, commemorating the work of the visionary sculptor, Isamu Noguchi:
I used to live in a house at the top of a hill in Mill Valley, California, with a family who adored 1950's modern design as well as Japanese design, and the relationship between architecture and nature ~ the house was like an art gallery (even with two dogs, two cats, and, later, two kids running around) and one of my favorite pieces was their beautiful akari light sculpture by Noguchi ~ nowadays, all I have is a knock-off of a knock-off from Ikea. I love how Noguchi explained his concept behind the akari lamps:
'my other preoccupation at this time (1952) was the development of akari, the new use of lanterns that I had conceived on my previous trip. it was a logical convergence of my long interest in light sculptures, lunars, and my being in japan. paper and bamboo fitted in with my feeling for the quality and sensibility of light. its very lightness questions materiality, and is consonant with our appreciation today of the less thingness of things, the less encumbered perceptions. the name akari which I coined, means in japanese 'light' as illumination. it also suggests lightness as opposed to weight. the ideograph combines that of the sun and moon. the ideal of akari is exemplified with lightness (as essence) and light (for awareness). the quality is poetic, ephemeral, and tentative.'
Some, but certainly not all (hell, not even most), law students question their choice of career path after graduation, and certainly they do this after taking the dreaded, soul-ripping Bar Exam. We get weighted down by our expectations, fears, and memory loss of life-before-law-school. I'm in the eye of that existential storm, turning over in my head the multitude of perceptions I have about the law, and social justice, and legal writing, and even just sheer exhaustion of arguing issues. In short, is that what I want to be "when I grow up?" And, I have another friend questioning what "label," if any, best describes him now that he is an attorney. To him I said, "ball of clay."
Me, I've been sloshing around in my ball of clay since I entered law school ~ shaping and re-shaping it into various tentative forms, firing up my personal kiln ~ only to later find myself dissatisfied or confused by the form taking shape ~ but you know, I discovered, you can take that semi-shaped object back out of the fire and re-form the warm ball of clay....that's what I'm trying to do these days. And somehow I stumbled into the Post Office today and found Noguchi's stamps, with one of his quotes on the front:
Everything is sculpture.
any idea without hinderance
born into space,
I consider sculpture.
And so, I'm content with my ball of clay right now ~~ chaotic, messy, unformed, constrained by the past and personal history, yet still malleable by the future, and so the kiln ignited by new insight. If you can, read more about Isamu Noguchi, here, and see a partial list of his works, here, and definitely check out his museum, here.