Chillida: Rhythm – Time – Silence
Have you ever seen a carpenter’s joinery—pegs,
Dowel, flush, shy, proud—in Cor-ten steel?
In Arco de la libertad Chillida shook hands with Vulcan,
Or perhaps hand-cupped that fiery dominion above the gate,
Brought it here (where Velázquez would have been proud).
A barrel-like vault, with its spring, haunch, and crown,
As if removed from the cathedral for a new function:
An allowance, for the void to caress euphony,
A sound of rhythmic quietude.
Bending gingerly are the robust pillars of the immortal structure,
Between perpendicular spaces and dancing intonation,
In Peine del viento XIX and Consejo al espacio VIII.
We are transfixed by an incisively molded edge.
Desert dries up its distant horizon.
It swings low, swings high to echo the Monument of Tolerance.
Anchored yet gingerly at an obtuse-angle for a hell-bending mystery,
Or a well-kept secret stored in the palm of a fist.
“It’s Madonna and Child with infinite affection and hope for human race.”
He communicates the message to the next generation of sculptors.
Oneness with a petal/fetal form.
Fundamental rapport with straight to curved passages have
Never been so articulate, as in the Song of Solomon.
Do you see these masses kissing the skins of our senses?
Primordial geometry tinkers our perception of imperfection,
For a permanent entry to the center of steel.
Stone and alabaster too, a temporary release. Imperial and metric scales.
En adelante mis compañeros!
PHONG BUI is the Publisher and Artistic Director of the Brooklyn Rail.