Becoming Conscious

This is the second drawing that began with a ‘me’ in it. I took the me out when I was quite a long way into drawing it. I actually posted the first one, and then reposted the fixed version beside it. This one I caught in time. The ‘me’ was on the ladder in both the upper and lower parts holding a notebook with letterforms of an unknown type and language on the open pages.

The icono-symbol of ‘attractive woman’ was naked as well in the first several tries at this art. The current version is five. The nakedness, like the ‘me’, seemed unnecessary, even wrong, regarding the meaning of it. So I dressed her.

So what exactly is that meaning? The title is ‘becoming conscious.’ is that the meaning?  Kinda. Look at the empty office in the top picture. Is it the unconscious mind? It looks like a series of disconnected ‘nows,’ each one next to the next, but each totally separate. And what’s done in each, done by following un-disobey-able rules, each action unknowable to the next, even tho the rules are the same. Is that what our unconscious minds are like?


But there are ladders leading up to a different point of view. Is that consiousness, where a bigger picture can be seen, the past and the future — time made space-like? Where a separate world is created, not merely reacted to, a world of fantasy and memory, a world observed?

I was on one of the ladders in earlier versions, but I had to take ‘I’ out, for how can I draw my ‘I’? Drawing the ‘me’ is easy, I can draw the inside of my persona, just as I write what I think and I can draw the outside of it just by turning it around in my creative,  conscious mind and drawing what I ‘see’.  But if I can’t see my observing ‘I’ as an observed ‘it’, I can’t draw it.

Sometimes I wonder if it’s a problem of language, that if I understood a language that didn’t have those pesky 1st 2nd and 3rd person things I could make sense out of it all. But other times I feel that without such language parts to place I, you and them there can be no consciousness at all.

Is it that consciousness is unknowable as the concept of 1st person singular? Is it un-sense-able and un-feel-able too, is it only an intuition and a fleeting one at that. Sorry about seeming to be in Jungian types, I don’t mean to be as I’m using those four words as in plain language.

Back to the art. The top part of the drawing is the non-conscious part of my mind. The attractive woman is only half there; she’s physically breaking through the top of the frame and metaphorically into consciousness. As is the ‘me’, who has climbed up the ladder out of view. But we see what he saw – her body. Her body, naked under clothes, not a paradox as such but a fantasy icono-symbolized –instinct made conscious as he climbed up.

See the little pen? It says ‘I was here’ it’s a potential graffito or signature (another word built from the word sign).  It’s a flat top lever-fill celluloid or resin-bodied fountain pen, I don’t own one but I want to. it’s a fantasy in a fantasy. It’s an art-sex metaphor too, I’m sure you’ve already figured that out. A create-desire one too.

On the lower picture, we see the top half of the upper picture’s attractive woman. Her bottom half was in the upper picture’s office metaphor of the unconscious which is her private – but unknown to her — world. Her top half is in a public – observing and observed — world.

But wait, in the upper part we, the me/I as creator and you as consumer/collector of, commentator on the art-thing, that office of the upper picture is in our heads as well as it is hers. But, again, since she is as contiguous with you as I am, the one office scene is it for all of us. Sad for me, that that contiguity does not extent from her to me.  My understanding of Jung’s concept of the collective unconscious is not the same as that contiguity

There are two attractive women in the lower picture, one inside the other. The smaller is the extension into consciousness of the one in the top picture. The larger one is the exterior of the interior that we see up there. It’s my theory of mind: I believe that in all of you fairly autonomous objects that sort of look and act like the one associated with my I — the one that my I calls home – is an I similar to mine.

And just look at what she’s doing! She’s going from money and that’s a small step from going for status, going for an alpha male companion or going for survival. They are just instincts acted out, tit for tat, literally. I don’t blame her for the all damage she’s done; I understand the need to survive. We all do and so we act without thinking (her lover, too, as he has no head); that’s your collective unconscious for you. I’m just a little either envious or jealous, but can’t remember which is which.

Then there is the hat that’s all that’s left of the ‘me’. A hat that hides the head that is where the office from the upper picture, the conscious and unconscious mind is, same drab colors too, ‘cept a flash of money, or envy green. With an equivalent — remember my theory of mind – my/his hatch and ladder to her hatch and ladder.

One more thing, a paradox; if the bottom half of the woman in the upper picture is contiguous with top half of the woman in the lower picture, her hand can’t be in two places at once. Her hand gripping the ladder in the upper picture can’t be waving in the lower.  I don’t know what this means.