Whatever's left.

by Bob Gelsthorpe


I leave Venice on Monday.

I will physically leave but have been witness to real generosity in Music for the gift.

Parts will remain, I will have images and sounds burned into my retina and eardrums. They will remain with me.

Leaving new friends is hard, but they are friends, and we will see each other again. I hope.

There is a joy in this role. Visitors from Toronto, Cincinnati, Hannover, Mold and Mestre give their time to share their thoughts with you, you hold them as though they were a dove.

No we don't have a toilet, You can't plug your phone in here, Yes I will look after your suitcase, The Arsenale is over the bridge and to the right, yes, it's a deconsecrated church, I'm not a student, no.

The good thing about these moments is that you never remember them, to borrow a phrase from Chris McCormack; there is a redemption in the smallness of them. While trying to stimulate a conversation about the bigger dichotomies coursing through a body of work or coded language, these small moments have as much power as any major knowledge transfer that can be mediated.

We occupy space and then leave. Not a transition, but a departure.

Cymbals crash, it fades to black.