Here at the gallery we don’t have modern things.
We have many things from the past. We have hundred year old Japanese silk Kimonos, African masks and artifacts, even the ones that are not very old are made in the old tradition and recall old costumes, dances and stories – their power derives from their connection to the past. Our vintage silk threads were dyed by hand–done in the old way. We have rocks and fossils which are tens and hundreds of millions of years old.
What is this obsession with things from the past?
For the ancient Greeks all nine of the muses were born from one mother, Mnemosyne, the goddess of memory. In an article in Arion, Herbert Golder states that,”…the Greeks understood that all our higher faculties, and inventive ingenuity, and even our sense of futurity, derives from a negotiation with the past. The past isn’t dead. It isn’t even passed.”
Kakuzo Okakura in The Book of Tea in talking about how the latter-day Chinese love tea as a delicious beverage, but not as an ideal, says, “[They] have become modern, that is to say, old and disenchanted.”