Linger longer upon the lake, a glassy pool whose eyes return the gaze. A fountain of beauty in the way of a shadow, rosy lips pursed. And as I lean in, he too, mimetic sway of self-love, as we dive into watery depths of these pictorials. The metamorphosis bloomed upon the shoreline. From these floral graves, spectral visions rise, and rise, as haunted tinctures set upon wet plates. And now only her voice may be heard, may be heard, her voice may be…

Behold this tableau, a shrouded figure all in white and her mirrored sister, customers at the ticket box of the otherworld. A one-way ticket, please. After all, mirrors are the doorways through which death flows, and these days the price for a cruise down the River Styx is just a shinny coin in the mouth. To speak the language of death is to possess a tongue of silver and salt. And Rudi Williams articulates with precise ambiguity – an illuminated word captured in a thousand tongues. As she says, mystery is essential for desire to exist. With the sun in her mouth, moon set in her teeth, she resurrects grave goods from forgotten worlds, near and far. Versailles, Vatican, Kremlin, Melbourne. These images are made through contact, through the burning of light, and hover like visions. A bejewelled headpiece of a faceless icon becomes a coronation to visiting statues and the vanishing public alike, each taking turns in reflecting their faces upon the void of desire. With the wave of a beguiling hand the image is revealed, a voice echoes from the walls and myth is born! The museal realm is a floating world, a palace of pleasure through arcane exchange, though mostly a place of limbo. Here, the objects of the muses are neither here nor there; they are betwixt and between, lulled between sleep and wakefulness, the living and the dead. However, Charon does not rock the boat and traveling further down the River Lethe, circles of confusion eddy about to the murmuring hymns of Hypnos, enveloping drowsiness upon the objects. An ancient vase of twilight blue yawns gently within its hermetic bed. Whilst ghostly shadows of amphora and plinths dream behind glass veils. The very fabric of this world is a faded velvet, imprinted with the memory of crucifixes and amulets, talismanic objects used for eternal protection into the afterlife. And yet in the after light, Narcissus laments: wilted are the flowers. Now we have reached the shoreline, somewhere between Europe and Australia, somewhere between the carpet and the ceiling, between sleep and dawn. We are in the caves, together. You and me, my darling, my echo. Eternal garden of rocks and crystallised memory. As above, so below, and suspended overhead are those two glassy rivers we travelled centuries ago whose currents are now all but a chalky memory. An echo is a stain.

Before I exit these caves, into the eclipsed light and the old labyrinth, I shall take these postcards, mementos telegraphed straight from Hades, sent with love, from Rudi.


Jake Tracey