“We live in the midst of language, surrounded by books, and, as a result, the nature of both has become transparent to us. We look thru the books to the content inside them. We learn to speed read so that the words too can be strip-mined for their information. Thus are we made more ignorant. And painting, sculpture, dance, photography, etc., all the so-called Fine Arts, suffer, because we look but we don’t see. Once the surface of the world, of its objects, inhabitants, etc., becomes transparent to us, it quickly becomes unimportant to us as well, and things that should register — political, social, ecological — don’t.”
From bpNichol ‘Primary Days: Housed with the Coach at the Press, 1965 to 1987’ in Provincial Essays, vol. 4, 19 – 25, 1987.