Tuesday, November 24, 2015

The Kenya Art Fair 2015

This last fortnight has been quite interesting.

I took a week off my studio practice. Lazyism. Secondly, I met a lot of interesting folk and spent a lot of time listening. Especially at the 2nd annual Kenya Art Fair.

The Kenya Art Fair is modeled along the conventional fairs like Frieze, Joburg, 1:54 etc as a platform for artists, curators, galleries, patrons and everyone artsy to congregate and make money; only difference being that in other countries, fairs are highly capitalist and put together by astute business people while this is an initiative of not-for-profit organization, Kuona Trust.

This is a very good initiative – I found myself there all the four days it ran at the Sarit Center. Was good catching up with all folk I’d not seen in a while. I enjoyed the art and liked some stalls more than others. I loved Brush Tu’s booth. It was well thought out and I admire these not-so-young guys’ (Boniface Maina, Michael Musyoka, Wawero Gichuhi, Elias Mungora) energy and vision. I enjoyed Nairobi Bag Factory’s enthusiasm, popularity and ability to professionalize merchandizing. It’s where I’d dump my stuff as I enjoyed the fair - where I was guaranteed a seat as I devoured my take-out lunch and must commend Michael Soi’s hospitality (I won’t mention the Hidden Agenda tab). My favourite stall award went to Samantha Ripa di Meana’s Roots Contemporary. Very chic.

All that art and artists in a single space was really something and without taking away from the organizer’s efforts, I ‘d personally tie a few loose ends in  an attempt to better and professionalize the event.

Firstly, I’d remove the tiny triangular booths and discourage artists from leasing stalls. I must admit this years’ Art Fair was an improvement from last years. The movement between stalls was fluid except when one got to the triangles. They are also very small offering limited display space so most vendors (mainly artists) tried to compensate for that by cramming paintings on every available space. In most reputable fairs, artists have no business renting stalls and space is reserved for invited galleries, highly regarded curators, not-for-profit institutions and educational entities. The two previous fairs could be used as practice and It’d be a good idea for Kuona to think of appointing a fair curator should they pursue the idea of Kenya Art Fair 2016.

The Kenya Art Fair 2015 (Photo Courtesy Anthony Wachira)
Once the idea of sorting out exhibitors is sorted, the organizer should demand a certain set of standards from every space. This can be summed up by Roots Contemporary. Every artist or gallery has a tonne of work in their studio or vault – you don’t have to hang all of it during an event. Roots had a minimalist approach showing works by 6 artists in a well thought out presentation. They gave just a little bit and it made the audience want more. Everything was professionally done – the texts, the labels, the catalogues. Every thing. It’s a stall that could stand out in any fair globally. They had prepared! The thing with most artist-ran stalls is that they thought/believed the organizer was going to bring in a lot of buyers and had a lot of items on sale that they totally forgot to well prepare their spaces. I was abit let down by some reputable outfits that had spaces you’d grade as ‘below average.’ This is supposed to be Kenya’s Premier Fair for Modern & Contemporary Art.

I was somewhat disappointed when Roots Contemporary didn’t scoop the award of the best stall… But I have this strong feeling a lot of people learnt a thing or two from them about presentation and that half the stalls at the next Kenya Art fair will want to be like that, which is a good thing. No?

The Wasanii Exhibition (Photo courtesy Anthony Wachira)
The fairs strongest segment was the Wasanii Exhibition, a mixed bag of artists who submitted work for selection. Some of the work was really good and generally the show was visually appealing. If stalls are taken away from artists, this exhibition may become stronger since artists save what they perceive to be their ‘best works’ for their stalls. Also it’d deal with duplication of an artist having a stall showing their work and also exhibiting in the main exhibition. Wasanii exhibition would be a good platform to ‘discover’ and award one of these young fellas. A ‘small’ cheque and a title with a nice ring to it - something like “Most Promising Artist” would go a long way in validating a young artist’s practice.

My favourite segment was the talks though. It was quite interesting to note that there was a huge presence of newish artists who were very curious and clearly want a stake in this burgeoning art scene. Artist who, rather than sit and wait, are doing things for themselves.  What do we have to offer them though? I didn’t sit in all talks but was quite a shame that most mid-level and established artists missed the ones I sat in. Some because they had to run their stalls and some probably disinterest. This disinterest is one of the reasons artists don’t collaborate in such ventures as this. A lot of local artists have been to major fairs and biennales and have info that could add value to an event like this. Why do they instead become passive participants or give it a wide berth?

How African Contemporary Art Fits Into The Global Art Trends (Photo Courtesy Anthony Wachira)
 All in all, it is good to see another new event to look forward to and alongside other consistent annual art fixtures like the Godown Art Center’s Manjano Art Exhibition & Competition and Circle Art Agency’s Modern & Contemporary Art Auction should be supported. It was also flattering to have a whole posse of Ugandan artists who drove to Nairobi just for the Art Fair. Kenyans should borrow a leaf from that.

Different folk will have different opinions of how it was. How it should be. Or the direction it should take. But everyone agrees  this event is vital. A little work needs to be done for it to live up to its tag line and for it to highly achieve the general objective of all art fairs. ‘We’ must raise the standards without being elite and locking out people. But it all depends on everyone’s goodwill. This way, we shall find all the artists we consider ‘important Kenyan artists’ showing at the fair and have all reputable art institutions committed to it.

 It’d be good to one day mention the Kenyan Art Fair in the same breath as Frieze. And Joburg. Art Basel. India Art Fair. ArtRio. Art Miami… Long shot but attainable.

Finally, congrats Kuona Trust, but don’t rest on your laurels! For everyone else remotely associated with The Kenya Art Fair, we have our work cut out for us.

Tuesday, September 29, 2015

What Are We Afraid Of?

Been working from a communal art space the last couple of months after a long spell on my own in dusty Kabete. It’s okay…ish so far. The waking up to ‘go to work’ is annoying. Am also yet to get used to unannounced guests coming in to steal into precious work time. On the flipside, I can work uninterrupted without having to play about with the princess or being forced into endless duels on X Box by the brother when school’s off. Badala ya kazi.

This posse-style studios have re-introduced me to hitherto temporarily forgotten art space shenanigans – where your studio practice is somewhat intertwined with the space calendar/time table. Most of these are daily-run-of-the-mill which is easy to pass. Some however, I find quite vital to an artist’s development – both technical and intellectual. The Artist talks.

Artist Andrew Mwini talking about his "Visceral" Exhibition in Kuona Trust
These come in different formats but the common thread is usually contextualizing an artist’s practice. Some are attached to specific projects – like exhibition post mortems/discussions while some are just talks – artist presentations mainly by visiting artists and guest curators.

These platforms are quite important I think as they are the ice breakers and introduce art practitioners to each other not just on a personal level but also on a professional platform that opens up the doors for possible collaborations while understanding each other’s philosophy behind practice, technical aspect of production and even challenges encountered and possible platforms of showing the process/final work. In our principally non-formal schooled art space, it turns out to be a school away from school half the time.

I have sat in some great and some not-so-inspiring presentations recently. I have listened to artists I have known for a while but never listened to seriously - and left quite inspired as I (thought I) understood them more, and looked at their work with a more informed opinion. In my other life, I need to know as much as I can about other artists and I find presentations/talks as a short cut to it. This has made me look forward to every discussion I can sit in or even participate. However, not all artists feel the same.

I recently sat in one where we were just about ten folk in an art space with a daily turnout of about forty. And I was disappointed. Not by the content, but by lack of interest among ‘us’. The presentation was very good. The presenting artists  talked passionately about what they do. Deeply conceptual guys. Artists using modern technology to make their art. Artists willing to collaborate and share their skills and knowledge with their peers in Nairobi. But I could see the disappointed in their faces as they kept asking, “Are more people coming?” It’s not the first time that it has happened so I wonder – why aren’t we curious? Why are we so lethargic in our quest to find knowledge from anyone willing to share theirs with us?

I recall the first time Simon Njami jetted into Nairobi and we all thought the only conversation we could have with a curator was to show him our works so that he’d take it to all art fairs and biennales. The disappointment! When Bisi Silva had a free hour for us but we’d rather sit in our studio waiting for that elusive buyer/client. When N’Gone Fall came knocking and we in our minds believed she came to see the clever artists. Not us the less clever – the unclever! What are we afraid of? It is understandable if someone has a previously confirmed (important) engagement or when an emergency calls but how the hell do you sit out of another creative practitioner’s free knowledge sharing experience just to bask in the sun or have your siesta because you’re bored. If artists can’t engage professionals having talks in their spaces, who should? Doctors? Matatu drivers? Policemen? Others?

Ethiopian curator Mifta Zekele discusses the Ethiopian art scene during "Addis Contemporary" at the Circle Art Gallery
I have heard a lot of lame excuses. How it’s “not important”. How “I have gotten to where I am without listening and travelling”. How it’s all rhetoric. A lot of very lame excuses that just confirm why we are all big fish in small pond. Whales in swimming pools. We’ve done it for so long that we actually believe ourselves. So long that we don't realize we lack understanding of a certain (necessary) vocabulary yet, we pretend we don’t care. It’s an attitude thing. Most of us know how to make very coherent art and how to talk to the person buying it but are not equipped to build a comprehensive and professional portfolio explaining our practice to present to a curator or gallerist. Or even to make an application for a residency. Kuona trust has a budget for small conceptual projects and it’s quite a shame very few people apply for it. Most will cite very little money but what happened to “the coat and the size” saying?

It’s not just an artists’ thing as the cultural managers/directors don’t fare so well either. It good that they facilitate travel & stay and work behind the scenes but don’t you want to know if the person you brought in is a fraud? An imposter. Don’t you have anything to learn from these people? Don’t you want to understand what my practice is? Don’t you want to know my expectations and frustrations as an artist working within your jurisdiction? This I think is a big contributor to the disconnect that currently exists in the Kenyan scene.  A practice that is not adequately informed or equipped to participate in any meaningful engagements to the extent that we can’t even define our own relationships. Where artists seem unsure of their expectations from spaces and vice versa. Where those in charge of the industry are not equipped enough to take a seat in (relevant) regional podiums. The fairs. The Biennales. I shall conveniently not talk about Venice coz as the rest of the world is making applications for 2017, we’ve got our heads buried in the sand waiting for someone to blame.

Arists engage Jide Adeniyi-Jones during Kuona Trust Wasanii International Workshop in Naivasha (2011)
It’s funny how much engagements that start small and appear trivial can achieve. But unless you know the value, they remain just that. Engagements. Communal spaces are supposed to be the ultimate for supporting this peer to peer support and collaborations but their Achilles heel is that there is high risk of taking each other for granted because you see each other daily. This may be as a result of getting caught up in individual practice or just natural competition among peers. Of course everyone aspires to be the king of the hill.

The spaces have to continue supporting these discourses but artists have to be on the forefront. To stop allowing institutions to treat us like babies. Case study - I get an email on Monday. Then a text on Tuesday. Then someone has to literally pull me from my studio at 20 past two on Wednesday for an engagement that was supposed to start at two pm Wednesday. Someone has to force me participate. For my benefit. But if alcohol and nyama choma is involved, I set a reminder on every blank space I got. No comment!

Those activities called artist mentorships ought to be made compulsory - by someone who’s not me -and should probably include more diverse aspects. Not just art theories and philosophies, but maybe health. Finance. Psychology. Honestly, folks need help. And it’s not in subsidized studios or shuttles to events five minutes away. Or artworks being exhibited in shopping mall atriums. Serious help to change attitudes. And lifestyles… long story for another day!

Artists should ditch this ‘self taught’ tag and claim their stake at the table to engage their peers. It’s only then that we shall boost our knowledge and confidence. There is no harm in acknowledging that you don’t know. That you don’t understand. That’s the beginning of the long journey called learning… after all, I don’t even know what am writing about. And I’m not ashamed of saying it. Tukuwe Serious.

Thursday, September 10, 2015

Omosh Kindeh - This Man I Know Him So Long…

Growing up in the nineties, there was a program on the government owned KBC radio titled Reggae Time. One of the signature tracks and probably the biggest hit back then was Winston Rodney’sThis Man.’ It is probably what endeared most of us to that kind of music. No big deal. Probably just peer pressure!

Fast forward ten…ish years later and slowly trying to establish myself as an artist at the then Museum Art Studio, another young lad came through the doors.

Straight out of high school, Evans Omondi joined the chaos that was the barely-outta-teenage posse. We all had different back stories but the common denominator was we were all young, skinny and broke. Everyone of us eventually had a nickname dictated by (the then) current circumstances. There was Red Wine – as a result of confidently ordering a presumably free glass of dry red during an exhibition opening that turned out to be for sale yet he couldn’t afford it! Then there was MaWeather – the artist who had not mastered his materials and blamed the weather for all his casting misfortunes. Shaka Zulu. Ma-Clay. We all had them and sooner rather than later, Evans had one too. Raised in the military barracks, he’d catch one of the numerous trucks to and from Kahawa. He was a lucky guy as he never lacked bus fare. However like most of us, there was still the issue of lunch and cigarettes to deal with. Kuona Trust provided (free) mid morning tea that someone intelligent suggested should be served at one o’clock to cater for the elusive lunch. Quite genius. Now the only handicap was the daily ciggy. One would be shared on a puff-puff-pass routine at designated times. Evans would come in late since the military truck would have a scheduled time table and as a result, he had to solicit for cigarettes. He playfully became known as the guy who often asked for a ten shilling coin – then known as a kinde, to sort out his own supply. Am not sure when it happened but by the time Kuona had to leave the Museum space for the Godown Art Center circa 2003, the name Evans had become just a government issue as the young guy from the barracks was in the art circles now referred to as Omosh Kindeh.

Our relationships post the Museum Art Studios took different paths. Some moved to the Mamba Village studios, others the Godown while those confident enough established their own private studios. When Kuona got its own space in 2008, there was a reunion of sorts. Some of us had had a turbulent three/four years as a result of a somewhat lack of solid institutional support. Kuona had previously spoiled us – free studio space, free regular exhibitions, periodical (well paying) outreach projects to cater for our emerging financial responsibilities etc.  Leaving the nest had been tough, but most of us held on. Kindeh even attempted to join the military but he was meant to be in the arts.
The new Kuona brought back guys more mature and slightly more resilient. By this time most of us were in too deep in the arts. The Nairobi Contemporary space was opening up more. There were more opportunities. Government agencies, private art spaces and cultural institutions were setting up competitions and awards and Kindeh emerged the overall winner in Manjano – Nairobi Visual Arts Competition 2013 for his signature city scape paintings. This earned him another name – city/urban planner.

Omosh Kindeh at his studio (September 2014)
Away from his work, I was his second opinion on gadgets - His consultant before buying cheap consumer electronics - especially  iPods. I must have helped him acquire at least four or five used iPods and his first point and shoot digital cameras from a quiet guy in downtown Nairobi whose name til now we only know as gadget boy. With every new iPod, we’d go through music and he’d select the same. Roots reggae – Bob Marley, Culture, Bunny Wailer, Peter Tosh, Gladiators, Steel Pulse, Burning Spear, Wailing Souls, Eric Donaldson, Israel Vibration, John Holt, I Jahman Levi, Don Carlos, Black Uhuru... And for this, his outdoor studio at Kuona knew no other music. Many a times we mocked him to play any other genre of music and his response would be “Kesho” – tomorrow. I never liked what was probably one of his favourite tracks – “Social Living” by Burning Spear. We disagreed on many other things too but…

When news got to us that he was unwell, I personally thought it was just one of those where he’d be in hospital for a day or two then get back to the reggae-playing love shack. But fate had other plans. It difficult to put in words how I feel. I don’t know how I feel. It easy to say how good someone was after their demise, but I won’t. People die every day but we’re very detached when it’s someone we barely knew or had no relationship with. But here goes a friend, a colleague, a beer buddy, a comrade. I think about the last conversation we had. The most recent moments shared. About the “Winter Warmer Exhibition” when I was boss and he was reporting to me. About the dark lanky dude who loved reggae music. And his smoke. Fifteen years! A lot of good times. A few bad. A handful outright embarrassing. But fifteen solid years!

Photo copyright Kuona Trust/Anthony Wachira
They say there is life after death (whatever that means). I hope you’re in a better place. Where there is reggae, art and the simple things you believed in – social living. I look t the last texts you wrote in your studio and one stands out, “The gods hide the beauty of death so that we can endure life.” One day maybe you shall tell us what you really meant. In the meantime, we shall celebrate your life. Enjoy your legacy. And tell your story. Many before us departed and we seemed to move on pretty fast that we let the world forget the mark they left on earth. Not you my friend! Not in our lifetime.
For now all we can do, is say goodbye with a heavy heart Evans. Fare thee well Omosh Kindeh. Omondi Peninah. City Planner.

See you at the cross roads. Mourn you til we join you OP.

Thursday, July 16, 2015

Artist in Residence (AIR) Programs; To Have or Not To Have?

I have recently participated in numerous conversations in regards to artist residencies and from artists’ opinion of the same; I never really know how to feel about artist perception of them.

Artist residencies are programs created to avail opportunities and support structures for an artist to stay and work away from their regular studio. They have been going on ‘forever’ and sometimes are very institutionally structured or can take an organic and very personal form. The common misconception locally is that artist residencies must involve international travel.

Historically, artist-in-residence programs trace their roots in Europe with earlier documented ones in Germany and France.
(Circa 1860s) Edouard Manet and Claude Monet after rejection from the Academie des Beaux-Arts that held its annual exhibition at the Paris Salon started the Cooperative and Anonymous Association of Painters Sculptors and Engravers to exhibit their works independently. They at some point worked from Manet’s studio with his upper class status guaranteeing financial stability and access to a guaranteed space as Paris was being renovated by Baron Georges-Eugene Haussman. It became a regular occurrence in early 20th century with European artists travelling to America to imbibe culture and vice versa. Others travelled to gain specific skills and follow art movements while others just did pilgrimages.

Such informal and organic movements of visiting people/institutions and working together set the stage for the more structured residencies we know today. Most programs share the same ideals but none in same to the other. Most encourage artists to develop their creative skills – while some emphasize on skill development, others facilitate the exchange of ideas, knowledge and skills. As an artist, taking time out from your studio enables you to stand back and look at your work objectively. It also allows you to get away from your everyday hustle and work from an environment totally detached from your daily practice. This may be a time to study, look at other peoples work, develop an idea, explore a concept or just contextualize your practice. Residencies can also be flexible peer to peer arrangements. I recall John Kamicha and myself taking over Peter Klashorst’s house in Nairobi a couple of years back and am yet to take up an offer of a print hangout with a friend at his garage.

Getting in to residencies varies. While some are basic invitation only, some require a detailed application process with work samples, artist statements and a detailed statement of intent. Before the turn of the millennium, this was complicated as an application had to be a hard copy involving numerous slides and handwritten applications and the post office/courier services but this has changed as most programs take electronic applications. This process can be quite intimidating depending on your personality and could be the reason most local practitioners give residencies a wide berth.

With most Kenyan artists’ background of being ‘self taught’ or from art schools mainly teaching traditional art making techniques, there are a lot of practicing professional artists who are unable to articulate themselves. Most can’t navigate from a curriculum vitae/resume to an artist statement to a bio or even a statement of intent. With these being mandatory documents for any application, most will give up instead of seeking help. Add to this the fact that these are artists whose practice is probably over a decade and are already making regular sales and you get stubborn individuals who won’t even try! In this part of the world, whoever makes more money is Emperor. And who are you to talk about their new clothes?!
It’s these elements that create such uncomfortable situations. Artists tend to feel that their practice is under unnecessary scrutiny, of which they are not equipped well to handle. It’s even worse when the person receiving/reviewing the documents is younger/newer in the arts.

There are numerous courses/workshops labeled mentoring and artists like Maggie Otieno, Gakunju Kaigwa and Peterson Kamwathi among others are on the forefront on this. It is good to see younger artists interested in gaining this knowledge and participating but it should be pushed more. Methinks this is a stepping stone to understanding your requirements as an all rounded artist willing to claim their stake on the global podium. An artist who understands the theory part of their practice. An artists confident enough to ask questions and have a conversation about their practice. An artist confident enough to build a portfolio and make an application – whether a workshop, residency or just an exhibition. An artist ready to write their narrative.

I think that the fact that someone sees the need to find and puts together some money for an artist’s professional development is reason enough to be interested in a residency program. Whether the objective, philosophy or fine print agrees with yours should be the point of contention. But it is unfortunate when we use our knowledge handicap or lack of confidence as our defense mechanism to pretend that we’re not at all interested!

Thursday, May 28, 2015

I am Having Flashbacks Of Something That Never Existed

Martin Luther King Jr’s speech ‘I Have A Dream’ prolly ranks among one of the most famous ever recorded speeches. It has been used/quoted by numerous souls over the years to prove that anything presumed impossible is actually attainable.

American president Barrack Obama’s ‘Yes We Can’ pre-election slogan borrowed a lot from it. So do the shenanigans that were a prelude to the 2015 La Bienale di Venezia.  Alot has been said about the Kenyan pavilion so I won’t go there. Instead, I am more interested in the vim - the passion with which we ‘claimed our space’. The intelligence with which we articulated our cause. The shrewdness with which we took up posts. The efficiency with which we exposed double dealing of our government agents. And then?

As any other cultural operative in Nairobi, I attended the meetings when I could. There were many of us. Whether or not our intentions were the same is irrelevant but I recall everyone being quite emotional about everything. Everyone cared about the Kenyan arts. Everyone was committed to righting the perceived wrongs. Some people worked more than others to get to the root of it all. Somewhere along the way, we were played by our very own government functionaries. They made us believe they were on our side - only for a letter written and signed from the heart of the Ministry of Culture, Youth & Sports to surface. The letter was written by a fella who sat in the gathering and feigned no knowledge of biennales and their significance. He played dumb to the extent that he would have admitted to not knowing there was a country called Italy. And we’d probably have believed him. He sat there with his boss; in front of tens of us and numerous cameras rolling – and lied to us without batting an eyelid that they didn’t know how the Italians acquired the rights to the Kenyan Pavilion. Did his boss know about this? Was he part of the plot? Was he covering for him? Stuff of urban legend. Questions I’d like someone in authority to address.

They told (or rather lied to) us that they truly cared. And that they had this grand master plan for the visual arts. That things would be better in 2017. That they’d help us find a way of getting to Venezia - yet all along they knew how to get there. My anger was pacified in that instance. I thought – screw Venezia 2015! I believed and quickly fast forwarded to 2017 and imagined a proper Kenyan pavilion – commissioned by Kenya, curated by a Kenyan or a curator appointed by Kenyans. Complete with truly Kenyan art practitioners. For a moment I discarded my skepticism and actually believed them til I was rudely awoken from my deep slumber. The letter surfaced. Not sure what emotion I felt. Betrayed?  Played? Angry? Stupid? Ambivalent? Nonchalant? I waited for someone to just comment about the letter. I didn’t hear it. No one came back to explain the letter. To disown the letter. To offer an apology. They sat mum. Like they are still waiting for it to disappear.

A committee that was formed to represent me is also not telling me anything. In the movies, they’d call this an open-and-shut case as the evidence is there for all and sundry but here we are with evidence that implicates a whole government department for f*@#ing up our industry and we’re just sitting on it. Doing nothing with it while patiently waiting for Venezia 2017. Ain’t we special? Unless  Wenslas S.A Ong’ayo, MBS operates like Jack Bauer in that he answers all enquiries, types all letters and sends them himself, secretly; it’s quite difficult to believe that he was the ‘lone gunman’ in this. Word has it that he has been ‘suspended’  (cute politically correct word that in Kenya means take a paid leave while we await another scandal to replace this, then come back) on his role in this fiasco. Has anyone asked Mr. MBS for his side of the story? Does it matter? Not me to decide but how we are handling this here and now paints a very clear picture of how we deal with stuff! Almost blindly. Groping in the dark. Not intent of confronting the hard truths. The Kenyan political structure taught us Kenyans only one way of dealing with things – the “Accept And Move On” philosophy. And that’s exactly what we’re doing here.

Venice is on. Some of us have visited the biennale. Some more will go there. Good for them. Culture trip. But who shall answer the hard questions? Who shall be held responsible for giving out/selling our pavilion? How do we ensure it doesn’t happen again? Are we happy with how things turned out? Do we have a closure? Will we? Is this our launch pad for the next biennale? Have we learnt anything from this?

From all these, all I have are fantasies of what I (fore)saw in 2017. When Kenya had its first ‘authentic’ pavilion. I have been there. I was there. I almost believed I was there. I’m not sure anymore. Whether they were just projections. Or actuals. Or fantasies. Doesn’t seem to matter anymore. The only apparent thing is that most of us don’t (seem to) care. We seem to be riding in a bus without knowing the ultimate destination. We’re okay as long as it’s moving. We seem to have finished with Venice 2015 and are sitting, waiting for 2017 to start this all over again. Then probably get angry all over again. It seems to be all hype. All social media sophistication with very little actual tangibles on the ground.

The only thing that seems real is that I am having flashbacks of something that never (actually) existed.