“The search is what everyone would undertake if he were not stuck in the everydayness of his own life. To be aware of the possibility of the search is to be onto something. Not to be onto something is to be in despair.”
—Walker Percy, “The Moviegoer”, quoted by Lawrence Weschler in “Seeing is Forgetting the Name of the Thing One Sees, A Life of Contemporary Artist Robert Irwin”
“The man with the magnifying glass takes the world as if it were quite new to him. If he were to tell us of the discoveries he has made, he would furnish us with documents of pure phenomenology, in which discovery of the world, or entry into the world, would be more than just a worn-out word… . A philosopher often describes his ‘entry into the world,’ his ‘being in the world,’ using a familiar object as symbol. He will describe his ink-bottle phenomenologically, and a paltry thing becomes the janitor of the wide world.
The man with the magnifying glass – quite simply- bars the every-day world. He is a fresh eye before a new object. The botanist’s magnifying glass is youth recaptured. It gives him back the enlarging gaze of a child.”
—Gaston Bachelard, “The Poetics of Space”