Tag Archives: desire

Text: Fallen Empire / Bond-Fires / Fires of Desire

Fallen Empire

As the fire continues to cling on the roofs of a fallen empire, the charred black smoke lingers. Desperate bodies wander to find scraps to savour and remnants to rescue. Their aged bones are physically unable to rebuild the mythical glory they once relished 40 years ago. The Kingdom has crumbled. It has been ten years since the impending hit – 9/11- the event that created the first crack in the monumental symbol of wealth, power and security, and where we see for the first time, fear and doubt seeping into the human imagination. It was an American dream, a fallen dream, that was once everyone’s dream that we are seeing beginning to shatter. But what is left?

In the dust and ashes of the decade to follow we see sudden shifts in values and visions. We see the election of the first president of colour, a sudden awareness of global warming, a scaling back of industries, the rise of the global south, and in 2008, a major global economic meltdown. A decade following the first meteorite in the shape of an aeroplane to penetrate psyche of a masses, brings to question: what can we now fathom of the world? Can we accept that dust is dust and now we must build anew?

The fires of the forest continue to burn as nature claims its rightful power over humanity; the remaining debris of many human civilizations that came before lie buried in the Earth. Nature prevails over man once again.


What we see beginning to emerge from the ashes is a new consciousness and awareness of each other in the World and in nature. We see a new generation burning with energy. A generation left to undo, remake and re-imagine a new world that was destroyed by misled visions progress of previous generations. We see an ecological turning and a movement towards traditional forms of pedagogy, craftsmanship and knowledge sharing that was lost in industrialization. But what now that continues to burn are the fires that bring us together.

Around the fire we gather, to keep warm, to provide mutual support for survival. We talk, we share stories, we dream of the past. A new system is emerging one that connects us by Ethernet that creates a model of the human mind and where we search for a collective vision. But there are forces trying to control it. A gripping past of former demons that haunts us.

We believe, we worship the spirit that brings us together, and celebrate the fires that burn within us.

Fires of Desire

Fire is heat and burning. Fires spread. It lies dormant in hotspots within the Earth, waiting to re-emerge again – connected by a network of embers. When a flame is killed, it can still grow strong again in another time and in another place. Fire moves silently – warming, cooling, sparking and burning. It is a fire of desire that lies within all our hearts. It is a desire that moves between us and that links us. There are no words for this desire that grows and burns. It is a desire that emerges and burns when fuelled and brought together collectively.

In a seeming apocalyptic time of immense change in a collapsed economy for culture as conservative governments around the world demolish the welfare state as uprisings emerge across Europe by disenchanted youth mobilized by social media resisting against high rates of unemployment and an astronomical rise in tuition fees, how do we maintain hope? How do we find space for the desire beyond economic concerns and to find new sustainable models of subsistence? Within a globalized community around the world, there is still a desire to create, and that fire will never die despite any economy or government support. How can we now begin to rebuild from the ashes a new world, a new vision of culture? How will it manifest in flames? How can we begin to spark imagination of new possibilities and utopias to question the structures that have crumbled?

Flames spread. They grow and flare up.

We are a collective of individuals from a generation lost of opportunities, lost in a time of great uncertainty, altering weather patterns, economic structural upheaval, social re-organization through digital innovations and change. Fires of desire is a sparking and ignition of an exploration of new platforms and ideas of collective working to find and create our own visions and possibilities in a world of dwindling finances and hopes for the future.



Founded in 2010, DOXA is an international research collective based in London, UK. Through an on-going project called ‘Creative Space’, DOXA facilitates cross-disciplinary dialogue through open discussion events to approach new visions of culture today in light of the economic crisis, globalization and the digital turn. Through the events, DOXA brings together artists, academics, policy makers and industry professionals to explore new ways of developing and sustaining culture and creativity, while address current developments in policy, society and the economy. Doxa (δόξα) is a common belief, as opposed to knowledge; doxa is associated with community, dialogue and truth.


Leave a comment

Filed under Art, Article, United Kingdom

Article: Fillip 13: Intangible Economies

Fillip 13

Subscribe online at:

Fillip 13 introduces Intangible Economies, a new, ongoing series broadening the notion of economy beyond its financial dimensions. The series focuses on the multifarious forms of exchange fuelled by affect and desire, speculatively investigating the fundamental role these affective transactions play in modes of representation and, accordingly, in cultural production.

This issue includes series texts by Candice Hopkins, Jan Verwoert, and series editor Antonia Hirsch. Forthcoming installments will include contributions by Hadley+Maxwell, Olaf Nicolai, and Monika Szewczyk, among others.

Also in Fillip 13:

Carson Chan: Measures of an Exhibition
Anthony Downey: Camps (or the Precarious Logic of Late Modernity)

Lisa Marshall: An Evidence Horizon

Haema Sivanesan: Producing Images in Times of War
Ryan Trecartin in conversation with Kristina Lee Podesva
Claire Tancons and Jesse McKee: On Carnival and Contractual Curating

The issue also features a record of The AAAARG Library, a site-specific installation commissioned for Fillip 13 and the 2010 NY Art Book Fair. The Library, produced by artist Sean Dockray and curated by Jeff Khonsary, will be presented again this summer as part of Night Market, a Red76 project for the Massachusetts Museum of Contemporary Art in North Adams, MA.

305 Cambie Street
Vancouver, BC
Canada V6B 2N4

Leave a comment

Filed under Article, Canada

Personal Text: Ellen McMahill, Sacramento, CA

Ellen McMahill
Sacramento, CA USA

In the last few months since the stock market took a dive and the world economies have changed radically, I have thought more about what that could mean to us all. We are all connected and if we did not believe that before, it is apparent now.

With all that has happened including the steady deterioration of our world environment, I believe that we are giving ourselves the opportunity to change the way we perceive our lives and how we go about living on a daily basis. In the last few years many were building their futures on the steady rise of values in the stock market and were delaying what they really wanted to do with their lives until they retired. I would say from experience that most people work at the jobs they have because they need to survive and pay for what they think they want in life (a house, car, etc.) and not because they love what they are doing, which is a denial of the possible beauty of each day of our lives.

In the past this was acceptable, but now I think that people want more because as always, we are evolving and evolution is about change and making everything better. Evolution is also struggle and learning and awareness. Without the struggle of our present situations we could not evolve into a world populated by people who understand more about themselves and therefore others. Human beings do not learn when everything is easy and comfortable and happy all the time. Whether or not we realize it, we are happiest (in a deep down satisfying way) when we are learning and have challenges to meet. By having challenges, we use our creative minds to find solutions and feel genuinely joyous when the challenges are overcome and we have succeeded in doing what seemed impossible before.

Now is that time in the lives of most people. We have the opportunity to reevaluate the value of material things, to understand the transient and flimsy happiness that material goods bring us. Good questions to ask ourselves at times like this are – What is important to me? What can I live without and still be happy? What am I thankful for? What is good in my life? What do I want to change and how can I change it? What will make me happy really and over a long period of time?

We may think we know the answers to these questions until we begin to answer them honestly to ourselves and then the truth may really set us free and on to a different road than the one we’ve previously been going down.

I personally know that if you want to change your life into the one you want it is possible and the changes are never ending and an adventure not to be missed. You can develop new attitudes and perspectives with your own determination and desire to be who you really are.

I have moved several times in the last few years, paring my possessions down to what can fit into a van in order to pursue my desire to paint and to see the world in ways I never thought of before. Since 1977 I have been through two divorces, had a family of two children (grown up now), been through a house foreclosure after the second, messy divorce, terrible debt, worked many hours at jobs I didn’t particularly liked in order to survive, sold my truck and bought a bike, moved from Florida to Los Angeles and rode my bicycle as my only transportation while working a decent job and continuing to learn more about everything, especially art and painting (I have a degree in art from Florida State University). I’ve been through terrible heartache, and joyous, beautiful moments. I started as a nervous, shy child and extremely emotional young adult and older adult until mediation and a desire to change my perspectives about life led me into a more peaceful place of more understanding and learning though I will always have more to learn. I’m 58 years old and still riding my bicycle as my transportation, painting every day and enjoying every minute and paying attention to the world and those around me.

I have great hopes for everyone in the world to grow and love more as we all struggle to understand that the more we understand ourselves and are honest with ourselves, the more we will feel compassion and goodwill towards all others in the world and towards this place where we live.

Leave a comment

Filed under Personal text, United States