today i spent some time at the skirball cultural center's showing of brian singer's "the 1000 journals project," an experiment in which an unspecified number of blank journals (kidding!) were flung out into the world, to be filled by whoever came across them with whatever they had on their minds or in their pockets. a dozen of the journals from the original batch are on display, books that made their grand tour and returned, packed with stories of their travels.
of course, these magnificent, sloppy, weathered volumes are mere bait to lure the passive observer into the second phase of singer's plan: the gallery is stocked with dozens of new, clean books for visitors to work on. At the end of the show these volumes will be sent off into the great unknown, with the hope that some of them will return to home base, at which point singer will burn those journals without even opening them. no, he won't do that; that's not what he's about! this second phase, called "the 1001 journals project," aims to carry on with the mission of the first go-round: bringing the novelty of random, collective journaling to everybody, in the hopes of reawakening the sleeping, sketchy giants in those of us who have long since forgone nurturing our inner doodler. or inner essayist, as the case may be, as plenty of pages in the original books are filled with a range of writing exercises, from carefully considered, heartfelt confessions to bathroom stall transcriptions. so, for those of you unwilling or unable to scrounge up stamp money for Post Secret, here's your chance to unleash your inner demons onto pages that will be casually flipped through by strangers across the globe.
if you go, feel free to add some crudely drawn unicorns or snarky haikus to my page (pictured above).
The 1000 Journals Project
Skirball Cultural Center
on view now through February 13, 2011