Daniel Chamberlin
untitled (lead glance) (2020)
digital photo collage
8.5 in x 8.5 in

untitled (lead glance) (2020) is a collage of photographs of galena crystals. The work represents the tangible vibrations of terrestrial radio: Waves transmitted through Earth’s atmosphere for anyone in range to receive.

In 1894 Indian physicist Jagadish Chandra Bose was the first to use galena – a common sulfide mineral also known as lead glance – for detecting radio waves. In the 1920s this technology was adapted for crystal radios, simple unamplified receivers that played a role in the popularization of broadcast radio. 

This collage was created with photos of galena crystals taken by mineral collector Rob Lavinsky (iRocks.com) and licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 3.0 Unported license. This work is offered under the same Creative Commons Attribution terms.

This image was created for the 2021 Indiana Public Radio calendar. Thanks to Erin Williams for suggesting me for the project!

the ascent

One January morning 12 years ago in Los Angeles, I was driving to the dump in a pickup truck with a friend, depressed. My rowdy friend was weary of my malaise. In between throwing emptied beer cans out the window, he suggested that rather than continue wallowing in suffering, that we might instead celebrate the fact that we were still alive and free to move around. “Don’t be such a chickenshit,” he said.”

Curious to experiment with this novel approach to my persistent blues, I suggested a trip to the Kelso Dunes.

The Kelso Dunes are one of seven North American dune fields that produce “booming dunes.” The cascades of sand that walkers dislodge set off vibrations that sound like low-flying planes, and feel like standing front and center at a Sunn O))) show. We began our ascent after dark under a waning gibbous moon, our heads percolating with fifth kingdom remedies. Six hundred feet of elevation gain in shifting sand and howling wind took us around two hours. We descended in a fraction of the time, hooting and hollering as we tumbled down the dune’s face. A cold night sleeping in the open desert under a sky rippling with shades of deep purple followed.

Adopting this approach to depression – staying mobile in spite of anxiety and unpleasant thoughts – has been a life-changing practice. Embracing impermanence and indulging in the fullness of the present moment didn’t solve any of my problems, and it led to a cold night sleeping in the open desert. Six months later it meant leaving my life as a writer in Los Angeles to become a medic with Marfa EMS in a remote region of Far West Texas. After a few wild years in the Big Bend, the path led to residential practice at the Indianapolis Zen Center, and now to a rich and comparatively quiet existence, happily married in East Central Indiana. I’m still depressed sometimes, but I’m better at taking care of the depression, and not seeing it as a barrier to life.

I wouldn’t have talked about it this way at the time, but in hindsight these photos remind me of one of my favorite Alan Watts lines, from The Spirit of Zen (1936): The freedom and poverty of Zen is to leave everything and “Walk on,” for this is what life itself does, and Zen is the religion of life.

Thanks, Dave.

self-portrait
summit contemplation 1

summit contemplation 2
the morning after

Inter-Dimensional Music is North America’s Gnarliest  Mix of Music as a Weighted Blanket For The Mind

• Fridays 12p ET 99.1FM WQRT Central Indiana
• Sundays 11p CT 93.5FM Marfa Public Radio Far West Texas
• Random encounters LOOKOUT FM Southern California
• Archived at mixcloud.com/cosmicchambo

Pandemic Year Zero has ended, Pandemic Year One is now underway. Inter-Dimensional Music Soundsystem marks this auspicious occasion with an opportunity to bask in gravity and let the weight of this audio blanket crush your corpse back home to the dirt.

Our practice begins with Pulse Emitter’s “Space Frost,” and Alan Watts asking “why do you feel so heavy?” From there, the heavy mellow flows slow and low like tears of concrete. Listen for Grave Upheaval, Primitive Man, Sunn O))), NKISI, Luke Stewart, Ras Michael & The Sons of Negus, Jamire Williams, Marissa Nadler & Stephen Brodsky, and Gnarl.

📹 “concrete slow motion” (Cosmic Chambo remix)
🔊 “Space Frost” – Pulse Emitter
🙏 Neil from Online for the “mind blanket” concept

ID Music 20210101 setlist:

track – artist
Space Frost – Pulse Emitter
II-IV – Grave Upheaval
Oily Tears – Primitive Man
606Day2_LM Song6 – SUNN O)))
Secrecy – NKISI
1 – Luke Stewart
Don’t Sell Daddy No Whiskey – Ras Michael & The Sons Of Negus
(Interpretation 14) – Jamire Williams
In the Air Tonight – Marissa Nadler & Stephen Brodsky
Cold Rain Will Fall – Gnarl

Inter-Dimensional Music is North America’s Gnarliest Mix of the stillness in stillness that is not the real stillness

• Fridays 12p ET 99.1FM WQRT Central Indiana
• Sundays 11p CT 93.5FM Marfa Public Radio Far West Texas
• Random encounters LOOKOUT FM Southern California
• Archived at mixcloud.com/cosmicchambo

We turn our attention to stellar evolution for this week’s session with the hope of perceiving “the spiritual rhythm that pervades heaven and earth.” Our soundtrack includes harmonizing occult frequencies in the key of Kate Bush, an enthusiastic rending of celestial bodies, classic New Age regarding the many names of night, heavenly downer folk from AlaCaliTucky, and the disorienting lysergic warp of Yellow Eyes’ black metal about telescopes and “flatness becoming depth.” A hazy international blend of ritual trance music drifts from the speakers as another meditation on impermanence comes to an end.

Language throughout the broadcast as excerpted from Hong Zicheng’s Vegetable Roots Discourse. 

This week’s video flyer comes courtesy of longtime friend of the show Jon Coleman. Jon’s sublime @Marfa_Mystery_Channel project offers a rare glimpse of the lonely and beautiful wonders that manifest to dwellers on the high desert grasslands of Far West Texas: “Simple Programming For Simple People.”

📹 untitled (2020) – @marfa_mystery_channel
🔊 “Impermanence / Rebirth” – Tunes of Negation

ID Music 20201218 setlist:

track – artist
Memnon Sa – Golden Ram
Leyland Kirby – My dream contained a Star
Enya – Paint the Sky with Stars
Michio Kurihara – The Old Man And The Evening Star
Brightblack – Wildshiney Stars
Flying Canyon – Crossing By Your Star
Yellow Eyes – Warmth Trance Reversal
Tunes of Negation – Impermanence / Rebirth
Silver Antlers – Stargaze Drifter

spar-wasp-small

Daniel Chamberlin and Tyler Spurgin invite the community to join them at the South Plateau Adobe Ruin (SPAR) for a sunset viewing from 6-8pm on Sunday, October 25, 2015.

SPAR is a space inspired in varying degrees by guerilla gardening, Abby Banks’ Punk Houses, Marfa’s “24/7” Entrance Gallery (RIP), and Donald Judd’s practice of reclaiming abandoned structures with minimal disturbance.

In its current configuration, SPAR houses untitled works in concrete and bone by Spurgin, along with Chamberlin’s Lichen Communion Chamber installation, including new in-progress lichen and moss terrariums.

SPAR is located on the southeast corner of Waco and Plateau in Marfa, Texas. Visitors should be aware that SPAR is an abandoned house: Enter at your own risk, be quiet, and don’t bother the wasps or the neighbors. Flashlights are advised past sundown. More images of current and past installations at danielchamberlin.com.

For more information, contact daniel.chamberlin@gmail.com. Updates @CosmicChambo.

unnamed

A revitalization at the squat gallery (aka the South Plateau Adobe Ruin) including works in concrete and bone by Tyler Spurgin, and an installation of my lichen canvases. Contact either one of us to schedule a visit. The gallery is hosted in an abandoned building at the south end of Plateau street in Marfa. If you visit independently, please use an inside voice, don’t bother the wasps, and enter at your own risk.

More photos at danielchamberlin.com.

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Wildflower Sigils and Mantras: Casa Piedra Road
Daniel Chamberlin
Marfa Book Company

The images in this series were collected on a daylong drive south from Marfa, Texas on Casa Piedra Road in the spring of 2015. The season was known for a historic wildflower bloom that followed an unusually wet winter. The photos are digitally cut, pasted and collaged into sigils and mantras with the intention of warding off depression and fostering communion with the plant mind. Images are printed by Color Wheel Digital with archival inks on Hahnemuhle Bamboo paper. Prints are in unlimited addition, available at $100 and $150. 

Phone: 432-729-3906
Email: marfabookcompany@gmail.com

Yellow Flowers

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