It takes a couple of thousand hours to make one of these spiderwebs. Tom will take a photo of a spider’s web, transpose and trace it onto a piece of painted plywood. Then the wood gets burned, so the only thing left is the web.

There is something cathartic and reflective when you pour hours of work into a project. Especially if it has tedious parts that involve hours of repetition. Often there is no escape from the thoughts in your head: the sort of thoughts you might normally want to hide from.

It’s so easy in our modern digital world to find a distraction. Hahaha, that cat is playing a piano. Boom. A temporary amnesia washes over you and delivers instant relief. Like any sort of painkiller, it slowly fades and the discomfort returns. A natural response is to fumble for the phone and score that next hit of distraction amnesia.

But what if you put the phone down and picked up the pencil? Or the fret saw? Or the soldering iron? Or focus and finish an arduous project? Well, if you can do that, then you can do anything. You can become anyone.

A picture of a woodburned spiderweb by Tom Sachs.

Photo: Tom Sachs

Originally written for the Sachsian Syndicate.

Previously: TGIM 7 - You need a montage, even Rocky had a montage.