Mapping the Affective Landscape 描绘情感景观

Book 2 from July 9th to August 6th 2018


Movement without Doubt 轻盈的运动

Chapter 4: Between Landings and Groundings

第四章: 从下榻到驻留

A family of emergences1 seeking a world


On living with a Wal-Mart over the mountain, anthropologist Kathleen Stewart writes,
‘It was then that I begun to think, along with others, that nameable clarities like family or friendship or love or collapse or laughing or telling stories or violence or place are all bloom spaces. They are all forms of attending to what is happening, sensing out, accreting attachment and detachments, differences and indifferences, losses and proliferating possibilities.’ (Stewart. K; 2010; 344).

谈及与沃尔玛共居一山的经历,人类学家凯思林·斯图尔特(Kathleen Stewart)写到:

“从那时起,我开始与他人有了共通的领悟。很多生活中意味清晰的符号,比如“家庭”、“友情”、“崩溃”、“欢笑”、“讲述”、“暴力”、“地点”, 都是滋生蕴意的土壤。它们以各自的形式诠释着人们对生活的专注、羁绊、离别、差异、冷漠、失利、以及生命中生生不息的可能性。

Like Stewart, we too live with a Wal-Mart over the mountain.

On this day, at the beginning of the second week of our residency, the glacier made its first appearance since our arrival.
Like Wal-Mart, it hovers behind a mountain.

Framed by the above, we ask once again: ‘How can questions that emerge from our encounter with the location participate in emergent realities?’ And ‘What niche of the artistic imagination, that cannot flourish anywhere else, can flourish here?’

But who are ‘we’, who address these questions?





On July 9th a new group of artists convened to consider the topic of ‘Mapping the Affective Landscape’ during weekly study sessions. With our arrival begins also a new chapter in the residency program. Not only do each of us perceive the landscape differently, coming as we do with clearly distinguishable sets of skills, sensitivities and memory spaces, but also the landscape presents itself to each group of artists differently.

In July the first crop of peaches is being harvested; the size of maize, gourd plants and sunflowers makes it impossible now to traverse field paths without causing some damage and water levels have risen, so that the improvised passages across man-made channels - made up of slats of wood and bags of concrete - have become flooded.


7月是年内第一批桃子收获的季节;如玉米、葫芦、向日葵般大的桃子的大小使得人们不可能在不损害果实的情况下穿越田间小路。与此同时水位也有所上升,因此临时由由木板条和混凝土袋组成的人造渠道 也被淹没了。

Aided by our host family, Xuemei, Erge, Jiyu, Amma and LaoHe, we, who are attuning our rhythms, our thinking, our visceral and sentient bodies, are

在我们的寄宿家庭,  Xuemei, Erge, Jiyu, Amma 和LaoHe的帮助下, 我们接通我们的节奏, 我们的思想, 我们的内脏和有知觉的身体。我们是:

Hanne van Dyck: fine artist 美术家


Kitamari: dancer 舞者

/// /

Stephanie DeBoers: poet & media critic/ theorist 诗人&媒体评论员/理论家


He Jixing: filmmaker 电影人

46dfb919c3085 // (Password: HJX5991xjh)

Li Lisha: artist 艺术家

Jay Brown: founder of Lijiang Studio 丽江工作室创始人

Quanquan: 3-year old girl 三周岁的小姑娘

Petra Johnson- artist 艺术家


Utsa Hazarika, an artist/anthropologist from India/US as well as family members and in-laws from Kumming, neighbours and friends, who played important roles in the formation of the studio, join us for some of the time during the festive season of Tabbu, which began on Friday, the 13th July: the first day of the sixth lunar month. Jixing tells me the festivities will last for fifteen days. The village has become a busy place. The roadside by the entrance to most farmhouses is lined with cars. I encounter a form of movement, I have not noted before in this location: ambling. This ‘walking without purpose’ in groups brings with it imaginary spaces of the sentient body: the puzzling space of homecoming after long absences and, for the in-laws, the semi-magic space of encountering the childhood environs of a loved one. Back in the 70s, Mueggler notes, pestilence came with the sixth lunar month. ‘With no pesticides in use until the late 1970s, insects feasted in clusters on the rice stalks. Women spent their days in the fields sweeping long, plaited bamboo scoops over the rice plants, trapping the pests, and packing them into tightly woven carrying baskets to burn.’ (Mueggler. 2001; 151).

来自印度/美国的艺术家/人类学家Utsa Hazarika以及来自昆明的家庭成员和姻亲,邻居和朋友,在工作室的组建过程中发挥了重要作用,并在Tabbu节日期间与我们共处。Tabbu节从7月13日的星期五开始:农历六月的第一天。吉星告诉我,庆祝活动将持续十五天。这个村庄俨然因此变得繁忙。大多数农舍入口处的路边都是汽车。我结识了一种在来云南前从未留意过的运动形式:漫步。这种团体性的“无目的地行走”为身体意识带来更多的想象空间:背井离乡多年后与公婆的旧地重逢所带来的错愕,以及遇到亲人和童年环境的半魔法化的空间感。 Mueggler指出,早在70年代,瘟疫就发生在每年农历六月。 “直到20世纪70年代后期人们才使用杀虫剂,遏制昆虫在稻秆上成群结块。女人们在稻田里清扫许久,编织竹铲,捕捉害虫,并将它们装入紧密编织的筐中燃烧。“(Mueggler.2001; 151)。

In 2018, men organise the social space for encounters including visits to other families and prepare the meat whilst women spend their days preparing meals. Every one of them is a feast for us humans, notwithstanding such everyday hiccups, as a broken phone, a cooker that refuses to work and a dog bleeding profusely from escaping a trap.


Forms of attending

In the time of landing, it is the breakfast for one, the movements of LaoHe for another that help stabilise one’s presence during the first week. Jixing, who lives here, is repeatedly becoming part of new configurations from the inside and thus experiences the time of landing in inverse order. Telling stories: He has been dreaming of a nine-headed snake. Once he realised the heads were human, he lost all fear. The heads lined up one after the other with just their backs visible. There had been nine artists before we came. I wonder what configuration we will acquire in his dreams once we are gone.




We touch upon references, films, texts: ‘The Century of Self’ by Adam Curtis; ‘The Art of not being governed’ by James C. Scott. A new question, ‘Are Avery Gordon (in Ghostly Matters) and Kathleen Stewart trying to connect the epistemological (what might be known and how it can be known) with the social?’ For once a definite answer: a resounding ‘Yes’.

我们参考了文献,电影和文本:“亚当柯蒂斯的“自我的世纪”;詹姆斯·斯科特的“不受治理的艺术”。一个新的问题诞生了:“Avery Gordon(在Ghostly Matters中)和Kathleen Stewart是否试图将认识论(可认知的以及如何认知)与社会联系起来?”


The route from Landing to Grounding leads into the long, never-ending process of reading and understanding. Landings, by contrast, happen in a short span of time and cannot be repeated. Telling stories: Jay tells us about the role of the village chief, about his being caught between the local government and the villagers; how upon ending the reign of a corrupt village chief, the women demanded to replace his position with a women’s committee; how, in spite of being ignored by the local government, the women held this role for one and a half years alongside a new village chief installed by the government. Right now the only task the current village chief - of whom the villagers approve - has to take care of, is the resurfacing of roads. He is grateful, that no other demands are made on him. Here in the valley, everything is more legible and thus easier to put in the ledger. In the mountains it is more difficult to control people and their actions but that invisibility might come with other forms of constraints, like giving up schools.


讲述:Jay向我们解释了村长的职责以及他是如何在民众和政府之间斡旋的;如何在他结束腐败村长的统治时,妇女要求以妇女委员会的名义取代其职位的; 尽管被当地政府忽视,妇女是如何在一年半的时间里与新上任的村长分享此职务的。现在,现任被村民认可的新村长的当务之急是重铺道路。他对这些没有其它过分要求的村民表示感激。在山谷中,一切都显得如此清晰、如此容易被记录。在山区,政府对民众的行为控制会相对宽松,但这种自由也伴随着其他形式的限制,比如教育的缺失。

How can we work with the ‘Location as Curator’? How to inhabit the disturbance of being cured (as in to prepare or alter), of feeling coerced into having to give things away; of feeling it is easier to start from oneself rather than a place; of feeling unfocussed?


How to allow questions that can only be asked here, to emerge?
For Steph, this entails letting go of the imaginary for action, she came with: of not writing poetry. She is writing lists of nouns and verbs/actions.



How to be here?
Here, where you have time and space to create whatever you want. How to negotiate the effort to come out?
How to maintain the alertness to every difference ‘making’ a difference?

What aids come to our assistance?






Living in a family home ‘makes’ us aware of connectivity.
Living in a space of generosity ‘makes’ a difference, both the fertility of the land and the generosity of Xuemei, Erge, Jiyu, Jixing, Amma and LaoHe are for many of us unprecedented.

Our encounter with the location spans the extremes of beginnings: Jixing was born here; for Steph and Mari the day, when the glacier becomes visible, is the eighth day of their stay. In between those anchor points, Jay, Li Lisha, Petra and Hanne have had encounters of varying lengths with the location, beginning in 2005.


生活在充斥着人性慷慨一面的空间中对我们是“有一定影响的”,无论是土地的肥沃还是Xuemei, Erge, Jiyu, Jixing, Amma 和LaoHe 的慷慨,都是我们许多人从未感受过的体验。

我们大家与地点的相遇跨越了形态各异的起点:Jixing出生在这里;对于斯蒂芬和马里来说,在他们逗留的第八天时,冰川出现了。在这些定位点之间,Jay,Li Lisha,Petra和Hanne从2005年开始就经历了与当地深浅不一的缘分。

Re-Telling Stories wrongly from memory
Jixing joins in during Steph’s daily conversations with her husband, who is in the US. Jixing: ‘Why is he on the couch?’
Steph: ‘It’s Friday.’
Jixing: ‘Today is not Friday and he is on the couch.’
Steph: ‘The couch is his place when he talks to me.’

Forms of attending

In Butoh, Bu means dance and to (sometimes toh) means step. The dancer uncovers the dance already in the body. The starting point is the place of one’s handicap.2









Telling Stories

Mari tells us that Butoh returns the dancer to the body of the farmer, that all movements are related to the earth and gravity. Butoh has gone underground again in Japan whilst it enjoys immense popularity in the West. Mari walks and cycles everyday, studies gestures, flows with the locality.


Mari告诉我们Butoh将舞者与农夫的身体联系在一起,所有的动作都与地球和重力有关。 Butoh在西方享有极大的声望的同时在日本逐渐隐匿了它的文化影响。 Mari每天都会走路和骑车,学习新的姿势,随环境而行动。

Steph reads a quote from Stewart:

All the world is a bloom space now. A promissory note. An allure and a threat that shows up in ordinary sensibilities of not knowing what compels, not being able to sit still, being exhausted, being left behind or being ahead of the curve, being in history, being in a predicament, being ready for something—anything—to happen, or orienting yourself to the sole goal of making sure that nothing (more) will happen. A bloom space can whisper from a half-lived sensibility that nevertheless marks whether or not you’re in it. It demands collective attunement and a more adequate description of how things make sense, fall apart, become something else, and leave their marks, scoring refrains on bodies of all kinds—atmospheres, landscapes, expectations, institutions, states of acclimation or endurance or pleasure or being stuck or moving on. Affect matters in a world that is always promising and threatening to amount to something. Fractally3 complex, there is no telling what will come of it or where it will take persons attuned. (2010; 340)



Telling Stories

A brother who used to smell like a wet dog ....’even worse’... is evoked in our imagination.

Petra reads a quote from Lauren Berlant

’Affect affects worlds and is impacted by them; the disjunction between affect, the event of its worlding (when it seeks a world), and anything like consciousness makes possible different encounters with oneself and one’s objects. Moving differently with affect is therefore not the same as pretending that a drama of decision changes things permanently or fundamentally. It involves discovering and inhabiting disturbances in the relation between one’s affects and one’s imaginaries for action. That discovery is the site of potentially recontextualizing creativity.’ (2014;89)



Petra引述了Lauren Berlant的一句话

'情感影响世界并受其影响;情感之间的脱节,它“归属性”的行为(当它寻求一种归属感时),以及任何类似意识之类的东西,都可以造成个体与本我与自我之间的交集。因此,以不同的方式对情感进行捕捉与假设一个戏剧性的决策可以永久性或根本性地改变事物是不同的。它涉及发现和承载存在于情感和对行动的想象的关系中的矛盾。发现是重新构建潜能创造力的基础。'(2014; 89)

persons attuned

Steph recalls the Japanese word kuuki o yomu: To read the air in a social context


斯蒂芬回忆起日语单词kuuki o yomu:在社会背景下解读气氛

Telling Stories

Seven days of Landing

Lisha has lived here for three years between 2006 and 2009. She returned in 2017. On this, her second return, she first cleaned the studio as she had done on leaving last summer.
Lisha comes with an imaginary for action:
to experience life here in her physicality;

to experience many things she has not experienced before.

During this first week she has been washing dishes and discovered a way to wash the dishes so the fields do not get polluted;
She is learning to prepare Jiatsu, a natural fertiliser;
she begun building a compost structure: she and Jixing went and got mud from the river, a crane there helped loading up their little truck;

she got pig shit and discovered it is not that dirty;
she finished the compost structure and experienced happiness that night;
she prepared a small piece of land to farm organically;
she met people who explore the relationship between one’s inner life and the land; people who shared their experience with her;
she discovered one should use a fork to break the earth rather than a spade which compresses as it divides
she was told to put oneself very low in order to face nature.

’Every one of these moments felt like a landing’, she says.

















Lisha is thinking of making a mural of a grandmother, daughter and granddaughter fighting; a semi- playful incident she observed on the train coming here. She plans to place it between the large, bright red characters that announce a new government slogan ’people’s war’ on the wall of the old primary school in the village.

We return to the Wal-Mart over the Mountain
So far we have not needed to go there, have not missed anything except, maybe, a smidgeon of sugar.

Musing about the word affect, Utsa observes that ’If you don’t feel the lack of it, you don’t need the word.’





Quanquan joins the discussion with a refrain: Dengzi

(Stool, Chair, Stool, Chair......) A list of nouns.

A naming into being.
Spoken by a three-year old, each word gives birth to a liminal space harbouring the emergence of new thoughts seeking a world.












1 emergence occurs when "the whole is greater than the sum of the parts," meaning the whole has properties its parts do not have. Wikipedia

2 “Start from the place of your handicap,” Hijikata’s female counterpart Ashikawa Yoko liked to say (Fraleigh, p.3; 2006)

3 Word Origin and History for fractal
1975, from French fractal, from Latin fractus "interrupted, irregular," literally "broken," past participle of frangere "to break" (see fraction). Coined by French mathematician Benoit Mandelbrot in "Les Objets Fractals."
Many important spatial patterns of Nature are either irregular or fragmented to such an extreme degree that ... classical geometry ... is hardly of any help in describing their form. ... I hope to show that it is possible in many cases to remedy this absence of geometric representation by using a family of shapes I propose to call fractals -- or fractal sets. [Mandelbrot, "Fractals," 1977] available on


Berlant L. et al (2014) //  Sex or the Unbearable//  Duke University Press, US

Fraleigh, S. et al (2006) // HIJIKATA TATSUMI AND OHNO KAZUO // Routledge, London

Gregg, M. et al (2010) // The Affect Theory Reader Duke University Press, US

Mueggler, E (2001) // The Age of Wild Ghosts University of California Press