A Glen Canyon Portfolio
Pg. 53 Print 19, Wall detail flaking desert varnish
Substrate: Lithograph printed on Kromkote paper
Pg. 53 Print 19. Wall detail, flaking desert varnish
Human history in that country is almost as tentative, and to our foreshortening eyes nearly as long. A vague sort of knowledge, with plenty of speculation to accompanying it, reaches back to that all – but- Eozoic time when the Ho-ho-kam in the southwestern desert and the Anasazi among the plateaus built their mortared houses in granaries, and lived for certain years whose remoteness is measurable by the fading radioactivity of their dead campfires, and were driven out by certain causes, including droughts known to us by the starved growth rings of ancient trees. Ancient trees. Gradually, over several generations, we have sorted out a kind of stratigraphy of the plateau peoples; Basket- Maker I, Basket -Maker II, Post -Basket – Maker, Pre -Pueblo, Pueblo I, II, or III…. We can mark the unconformities between strata of human history, and knowledge broadens down, not quite from precedent to precedent, but from inference to inference, toward historical time…. Though we may often and for long periods on solid ground, we are never quite out of sight of the half- effaced shorelines of speculation. Knowledge extends in promontories and bays; or to put it vertically rather than horizontally, the strata from remote to recent never lie so unbroken that we cannot find some line of unconformity where the imagination must make a leap. There are so many horizons, geological and human, where the evidence is missing or incomplete.
– Wallace Stagner