In order to function properly, imagination needs reality. A foundation of somewhat tangible truths from where fiction can take off and become a memorial or a rambling fantasy, possibly even abstraction.
A small house is not a home.
A plaster man is not a human.
Porcelain is not labor.
A past is not a now.
Families usually center their lives inside cubes of vast averageness. They are more or less designated to desire such cubes. Prototype lifestyle. A reliable roof, some necessary stairs, windows with neat sills for decoration, wooden floors perfected in the hands of a previous century carpenter. People inhabit these cubes. They try their best. They are peasants and dads and digital programmers and habitually broken, at least to a certain extent. They manage to love and destroy and be providers, at least to the certain extent that make the next grown-ups want do something similar. To earn money, borrow money, buy goods and toys and some plaster with which they can erect more walls between themselves and the realization that their lives are sketches drawn by someone before them. Were we built by humans prior to us or are we building them with our material memory.
Heritage is cultural relics, it is the flour we were taught how to make, and the feeds we’re given, and the feeds we’re producing, and the humans we’re producing in the image of previous humans, and all the games we play to outsource decision making about how to spend a day/life. For centuries families were born to cultivate, fields and villas sprout in their absence.
No matter how crushed our own home was we crave a new one. We’re really dying to take action: to be first-person executors and caregivers and to further ripen the beauty of our mundane choices. Polish surfaces, make them shine a bit more. It is a house and it is domestic, but we don’t really own it. Silver is too hot. Do things seem more fictional the more gorgeous they look. Do people.
Monuments tend to survive humans and any exquisite marble hero is necessarily fiction. Any monument is a worship of something that were loved and probably didn’t really exist. Any sculpture is a monument. It may be shyer, more modest and momentary than grand stone, but the act of sculpting remains a massive memory language. And we are quite the sentimental kind. Talented breeds of pseudo-nerds who claim to grasp a robotic future and yearn to leave some carved and physical matter behind before it arrives. Draw some circles when linear progress becomes too painful.
A small house is a scene.
A peasant is a role.
We cannot remember what we never knew.
— Nanna Friis