March Airs: Pulling Heroes out of a Dark Hat

22Mar12

“You are my heroine! And by heroine I mean lady hero. I don’t want to inject you and listen to jazz.”

Liz Lemon

Hello March new moon. Hello Spring, Aries energy and madness, rabbit magic and March Hares. The march of Time and our timeless, shared inheritance of heroes and heroines circles back again. There is actually a reason behind the phrase “March Madness,” beyond a sporting gamble and other Spring fevers. The term refers to female rabbits beating or boxing their male suitors on the head, on their ears, until the short window of time, just one hour, when they stop to indicate they can mate for fertility.  Male bashing 90% of the time for 10% lovemaking? Yep, madness.

Re-birthers strutting for Easter parades pay homage to magic madness of Spring with “mad” hatters and Easter bonnets, which likely come from the symbol of madness in Victorian times of a bit of straw on the head, perhaps the result of cavorting in the hay bales of the mangers.

Clearly timelessness, desire, madness and Spring can birth some many splendored fertile things. The time for More Love n’ Magic is here.

The news lately with distracting, verbose gender bashings in the political realm these days have me saying, “Silly Rabbits” a lot and it reminds me of the nonsense boxing verbosity of the hero of the 70’s era Bollywood flick, “My name is Anthony Gonsalves,” a top-hatted trickster who creates some Easter tomfoolery to woo his Lady Bunny.

For fun, I followed rabbits down the hole from the etchings of Durer to Cuter future hoppers through their many guises, and like the classic heroine and hero stories and in honor of Aries, the warrior child sign ushering in, I am inspired to quit boxing and begin multiplying fertility!

Why are rabbits, symbolizing birth and re-birth and fertility through rampant boisterous sexuality so damn sexy? There ya go, Little Thumper…it’s the Hope of Rebirth and Heroics available everyday multiplying, 24, 7. Lucky for you, I re-imagined, after all this cute rabbit fluff, an easy guide via my:

9 Steps of a Heroic Journey for a Modern World.

Rabbit Fluff Journey first: They’re EVERYWHERE! MULTIPLYING!

From Durer to Koons’ cartoon balloon rabbits to the evolution of a marching trickster Bugs Bunny.

Magicians pulling rabbits out of hats runs a long legacy from dreamcatchers like Alice in Wonderland to “Harvey,” the 1950’s movie in which James Stewart played an eccentric whose best friend is an imaginary 6 ft tall rabbit named Harvey to…

…Donnie Darko to Terence Koh’s bunny tower vortexes to shaman rabbits inspiring animal hats sold on street corners everywhere. Even Kate Moss whispers sweet nothins to her Bunny Lover and wishes us “Good Luck.”

and then my fave, David LaChapelle, cast Naomi Campbell straddling a guru-chakra of a chocolate Playboy bunny. Yummy!

And go ahead, call me Donnie Darko, but this week, the yoga posture, Virasana, Hero or Truth pose, felt, well,

rabbit-like.

Hero-Worship-Journeys? I have sat at the feet of a long list of gurus and have been standing on my head since age 10, inspired by 1970’s TV yoga gurus, Lilias, Yoga and You and Richard Hittleman, taut and terrific in his stirrup pre-Lycra leggings. Later years found me toe to toe with the likes of Masters like Ram Dass, Shri Pattabi Jois, David Life and Sharon Gannon, Kirin Mishra, Elena Brower (Vira-ness Highness Herself) and a long list of other Gurus in order to pass Go and reach Bliss.

Yet, it wasn’t until I lost or almost lost everything 3 years ago, my home, my family, my career, my father and my business, that I understood who the hero, guru was. Me.

I am in the new dream now. So are you. Switch your story to hero and heroine if you haven’t already.

Aren’t we all the best of boy-warrior power and girl-gathering, integrating peace power?

Last month, I wrote about the circle game, this month I am all about the hero. If circles could expand multi-dimensionally beyond our 2-D and 3-D fields, consider the claiming of your own hero/heroine journey that which actually CREATES the 4th dimension. Your personal smashing of the Time and Space dimension. Now that’s ever so sexy. Who are we to argue with a higher plan? Maybe the Mad magazine kid has it right all along. What me worry? The best gurus are tricksters. Make peace with your troubles, be kind to yourself and see the humor in the drama.

To remember that one is loved, a hero or connected is a basic ritual and rite of all passages. The forgetting is not to be lost or abandoned. It’s is to experience again and again this falling in love, the trials and tributes of the experience in multiple form. Why is reincarnation so strange when we all experience that connected, repeated moment in music, a friend’s smile, a glass of wine…again and again?

I remember reading Joseph Campbell and lately there are all these Womanly, Goddessy interpretations of the Hero Journey. Nice, but I am quite over all this male rabbit and female rabbit bashing and clashing of differences. I felt like creating a simple hero, heroine journey that fits all our realities, beyond gender. Easy, so you can watch yourself in all of these. I’ve popped in cultural icons, images from new spaces and art I discovered this month along with quotes from my new favorite shaman, artist Theaster Gates.

Will this smack of a little paganism, a little childish nonsense, a little Spring art-shows-obsessed, Hallmark cards seasonal seasoned with some Tantric Feng Shui, New Age-Hindu chakra hailing histrionics and historic Christian stages of the cross, Kabbalah Jewish-y…yes, yes and yes.

It’s all based on a simple concept for easy memory…3 stages for all things, 3 steps to each…plants and humans. SLEEP, CREEP and LEAP.

SLEEP…dream, sleep and root underground to receive ideas.   CREEP…to explore, expand and absorb in all directions beyond your seed shape.   LEAP. Go forth and Spring up!

so, here it goes, the histrionic, heroic journey in 9 steps.

SLEEP

“Towering” Truth Toppling.  

This step is always the “first” terrible step of any new journey. The death of the old king, a release of cultural ideas and constructs challenges to family, faith and gender Is this not what is going on for all of us in the larger societal sense and personally? I lost my father and family physically, but gained a life beyond what their belief systems are. As each of us pioneers a way of life unlike anything we have seen before. Are you still mad at Mommy or Daddy or for that matter, anybody? Give it up, tear down the tower or let down your hair for magic to rise, start a new path, a revolution…whichever comes first.

Sidekicks and Tricksters.

The 2nd step, the call to adventure, money, sex all lure, yet can crash you on their rocks. It’s common knowledge that some smashing in Life is necessary to see the gem within.

One of the more fascinating displays at NY’s recent Armory Art show was this sculpture sitting in a courtyard of Chinese tapestries by the artist, Yang Jiechang at Tang Contemporary Art, titled “Stranger than Paradise-The Origine,” 2011 (140 ceramic sculptures)  Clay humans, animals and other beings are having all kinds of sex on a construct of lucite cubes like a massive crystal about 8 feet long and 6 feet high. Madness in this very elegant construct. (I love this top image from artinfo.com for that reason!)

Trials and Adversities.

Step 3, enter trials and adversities, they come in many colors and forms and tend to multiply. Trust you created them in their image. My advice? Make friends with them and tease the hell out of them until they disappear. (Ponder on This: is that why some people seem to be having so much fun wherever they are?)

Of course, my very own favorite trickster Playtoy bunny is Frank Kozik’s Smorkin Labbit in 57 flavors.

Artist shaman, appearing in NY for the Armory show, Theaster Gates has a great quote on his approach to his art which touches on emotionally loaded topics. He talks about curiosity, framing devices and potency in terms of his art, and it can be applied to Life as well.  “You force what’s new to deal with what’s old. There are lots of devices. It’s all tricksterism.”

The Trickster at the crossroads, the Hermes Rabbit will wear many disguises, mash-up history, reframe things incessantly, whether that trickster be the media, an artist or your “best” friend. And then you must play the “Silly Rabbit, Tricks are for Kids!” game. The only way to trick a trickster is to know the game and play it…well.

CREEP

Healing Heart Hibernating.

The 4th step….both shaman and witch go sloshing around in the Belly of the whale. Willingness to experience the metamorphic Initiation and Descent, this is a period of drawing inward and looking for the lost pieces of oneself. When Step 2 and 3 debris exits, this is usually when Lost Love floats to the surface. That’s a deep love and it is YOURS. Wallow in that Whale for a while. It’s worth every minute.

Nick Cave sculptures are euphoric heart history healing and extra-sensory.

The Right to Invention.

Step 5 was inspired by this Theaster Gates quote:

“That period of conditioning between what you hope for and what you have, that feels like where muscle comes from for me. From the chasm between what I wanted and needed and what I had, came a right to be, a right to pursue, a right to imagine. And that was the path to possibility.”

New Story!

Step 6 is where we create our new story, new heroes. This gentleman reading a book was the entry to “Allegories and Experiences,” the surprise exhibit filling a classic shell of a New York Upper East Side Beaux Arts town home by Janna Bullock (on view at 14 East 82nd Street through May 1) which contemplates the stories of dictators, the truth and the responsibility for change we all share.

My friend, designer Pryor Calloway is maker of this elegant bench seated for contemplation in front of a waterfall inside a (another) Upper East Side home, this time an exquisite 35 million dollar home, for which she curated 5 plus floors filled with art. Simplicity and listening will make anyone go “Ahhh…” and re-invent.

I love discovering gems like this, hidden in the Brucennial, the alternative to the Whitney Biennial, produced by Vito Schnabel and The Bruce High Quality Foundation. Only these Mad Men could produce “The single most important art exhibition in the history of the world. Ever.” Exhibit is on until April 1 in the West Village. Artist of the above unknown. (oh, good new religion of Art slogan!)

LEAP

another “artist unknown” painting in Brucennial 2012

Winning!

Step 7 is defeating the shadow, The Sacred Marriage, in Lady Heroine Talk, “which occurs as she learns to integrate and balance all aspects of herself.” Oh so, maybe we are the shadow and the light?

I’ll take sacred marriage with the likes of these three! Can I be the Love Child of a three-some of Terry Richardson, Lady Gaga and Terrence Koh? What? Why ever not? You are winning when you propagate from good heir/hare/heritage. Mentor-Inventors. The way Terrence chose his spirit bunny, go ahead honey, Step 7 is Pro-Choice, choose your very own Spirit Partners and Parents.

An Ocean Going Vessel.

The Crossing of the Return Threshold is Step 8, waking up to a new view of life and setting sail. I loved Radcliffe Bailey‘s “Levitate,” a black glitter boat against a rich cloth of mysticism. His work touches issues of African history and the passage to America…very heroic journeying indeed.

Each One Teach One.

Step 9…So take a deep breath, Pick yourself up, Dust yourself off, Start all over again.

The piece above was a mesmerizing repeating video in a static frame by Jean-Francois Rauzier at Waterhouse & Dodd.

The heirs to the future we are imagining are trusting us to play and imagine the Best. 

This blue and silver disk is a “curling stone,” and the cornerstone of artist Jason Young’s “2054,” a teaser for his large scale White Project, a futuristic collaborative art game transporting actors and viewers into a little Urban Game of the Future this April 10th,  on the roof of The Soho House in NYC.  His imaginative video, sets the stage for more common, shared journey games to exercise collaborative, imaginative…and yes…magic possibilities.

“The act really, was just to get together and play.”   

Jason Young

Cliff notes?

SLEEP

1      “Towering” Truth Toppling.

2       Desire Siren Calling.

3       Sidekicks and Tricksters.

CREEP

4       Healing  Heart Hibernation.

5       The Right to Invention.   

6       New Story.

LEAP

7      Winning!

8      An Ocean Going Vessel.

9      Each One Teach One.

   OX   OX
    !
   (…..)
   go on now. 
transcend. weave. be the inspiration, beauty + invention of people, places + things beyond Time.

It’s Swing Time. Happy Hero/Heroine Hoppings.

PICK YOURSELF UP

From the Film: Swing Time 1936

(Lyrics by: Dorothy Fields / Music by: Jerome Kern) Fred Astaire & Ginger Rogers

(He) Please teacher, teach me something,

Nice teacher, teach me something.

I’m as awkward as a camel, that’s not the worst,

My two feet haven’t met yet, But I’ll be teacher’s pet yet,

‘Cause I’m gonna learn to dance or burst.

(She) Nothing’s impossible I have found,

For when my chin is on the ground,

I pick myself up, Dust myself off, Start All over again.

Don’t lose your confidence if you slip, Be grateful for a pleasant trip,

And pick yourself up, Dust yourself off, Start all over again.

Work like a soul inspired, Till the battle of the day is won.

You may be sick and tired, But you’ll be a man, my son!

Will you remember the famous men, Who had to fall to rise again?

So take a deep breath, Pick yourself up, Dust yourself off, Start all over again.

(He) I’ll get some self assurance If your endurance is great.

I’ll learn by easy stages If you’re courageous and wait.

To feel the strength I want to, I must hang on to your hand,

Maybe by the time I’m fifty I’ll get up and do a nifty.

(Both) Nothing’s impossible I have found,

For when my chin is on the ground,

I pick myself up, Dust myself off, Start all over again.

Don’t lose your confidence if you slip, Be grateful for a pleasant trip,

And pick yourself up, Dust yourself off, Start all over again.

Work like a soul inspired, Till the battle of the day is won.

You may be sick and tired, But you’ll be a man, my son!

Will you remember the famous men, Who had to fall to rise again?

So take a deep breath, Pick yourself up, Dust yourself off, Start all over again.

photos by Jade Dressler, Alvaro Montagna, etc. etc. etc.

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2 Responses to “March Airs: Pulling Heroes out of a Dark Hat”


  1. 1 Kickin’ Delicious.Spring City + Country Trippin’ NYC, USA. « Jade Dressler
  2. 2 ideas in the air « Jade Dressler

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