Voices On Silence


Voices On Silence

Sunday, January 24, 2021

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Ise Henriques Sharp is a Jamaican-American artist based in New York. Her current work explores silence as an interpersonal experience and its cultural implications. Voices on Silence is a composition of drawings and statements from family and friends on their relationship with silence.

— Instagram @ise.athena

Silence is presence: the ability to escape my mind's questioning and to be fully absorbed by a moment…

… the patches of noiselessness interspersed within sound.

[It is] late at night when I take my dog for a walk.

The woods, just before dawn

In the forest; when the chirping and gurgling and rustling manage to wipe my mind blank.

[It is] under the water…

...the noise of regular life isn't there and my mind is quiet…

For me, silence is the time between sleep and waking when dreams have quieted down but my ears have yet to turn on.

There's a tiny village in the Czech Republic atop a hill in Pardubice. On its northwest outskirts there's an old bench, built among a patch of birch trees, which overlooks a valley. When you sit there, it isn't noiseless. Leaves rustle and dogs bark in the distance. But that place is where I learned what we really mean by silence…

I find silence in four places: (1) Lying in bed, pre-dawn, while my family and the world are still fast asleep…

In long drives by myself

In the movie theatre...where I can shut down my own thoughts and focus on something that isn't me or anyone else entirely.

In between the end of one conversation, and the beginning of another...a sound…a thought. The Tibetans call it bardo. It's the gap that exists when something has ended and something else hasn't begun…

Most readily, I find silence in the desert. The dry air, steady wind, and expansive horizons allow a sense of isolation and facilitate silence, whether simply perceived or actually real.

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