A poem about Vik Muniz’s 2012 exhibition at CAC Malaga


Returning home from holiday in 2012, I wrote a poem about the Vik Muniz exhibition I’d seen a couple of weeks earlier at CAC Malaga. I posted a video of Muniz’s art with a  reading of my poem.  Then I realised I hadn’t taken the opportunity to put the words of my poem on the website.  So I’ve done that here…


Windows on unexplored worlds 
Appear before me in whitespace 
Which dot 
Which pixel 
Was the first germ? 
Did he mean the first impression to be the spur? 
Or was the idea itself the progenitor?

Out of peanut butter and jelly 
Swirls Mona Lisa’s oh-so-familiar smile 
But is she licking her lips? 
My taste buds pucker  
To synapse these flavonoids

She smiles across the room 
At a Mercator view  
Of a world generated  
Out of the detritus of hardware 
Dumped in a headlong rush 
For speedier personal computation

See a mirror image  
Of stars and stripes meld 
In green flower and broccoli head 
Then fade and droop in a moment 
As the split season falls

This beautiful girl 
All pouting lips and glitter tears 
Encased in an amber of  
Cheap China plastic toys 
Cries out for familial love 
For God’s Sake 
Just make some human contact

Frankenstein and the Count 
Etched metal bolt and cowlick 
Smirk in the incredible edible richness 
Of salty black pearls

An installation in identical photo frames 
Captures 28 unique unidentifiable objects 
Each one created 
One by one 
From its own white plasticine ball

From elasticity 
The removal of cut diamonds in a frame 
Reveals reproductions of iconic Hollywood pouts 
High cheekbones and brows 
Adopt luxury parallelograms

And here 
The artist directs from the ground 
A sky writer executing on clear blue canvas 
A cartoon cloud 
To be a toy for thermals
This disparate band of the disowned 
Who work the dump 
Resolve into view out of tin cans shoes and tires 
As though shaken and swirled by kaleidescope
Come out into the glare heat and stink 
But care not 
For the rooms in those explored worlds 
Were recorded in your mind 
And can be retrieved at will 
For your pleasure




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