Monday, July 23, 2007
One of the most fascinating things to me about Clark Coolidge's work is the ark of his career. It's seems like one can divide it into roughly these phases: 1) in the late 60s, the early work, radically disjunctive, sort of word nuggets that form short jigsaw narratives like in Space, 2) in the early 70s, longer endlessly recombinatory works like in Polaroid, The Maintains and to somewhat of an ebbing-back-into-narrative-mode extent, Quartz Hearts, 3) in the late 70s, the more narrative Solution Passage, Mine: The One That Enters The Stories, 4)in the 80s, serial texts like At Egypt, and The Crystal Text. But it's also evident that as the work progresses, Coolidge is able to utelize all these various modes in more of an overlapping way. This 'career-ark' mutates to somewhat of an extent. On The Nameways Vol. 2, for example, utelizes disjunction, narrative and seriality. A Collected Coolidge, tho it would probably have to more than one volume, would go a long toward putting all this into focus.