The White Stripes may be old news, but they have a track that may very well be the quintessential rock n’ roll psalm. It’s called Little Room. It is 50 seconds of creative introspection and instruction. Of the 50 seconds, 20 are Jack White singing: “When you’re in your little room, and you’re working on something good; but if it’s really good, you’re gonna need a bigger room. And when you’re in the bigger room, you might not know what to do, you might have to think of how you got started sitting in your little room.” The words are actually by Eric Clapton, though I find no record of this ever being performed by him.
I don’t imagine this making it on poster with a picture of a free climber hanging off Half Dome, nor do I see it as some lost Platonic lesson. Still, the message wrapped in the medium has burrowed deep in my brain and I often wonder why I don’t do just this very thing. No great success has come to me, or Atlas, but 3 years of writing has allowed me an opportunity to move from my Little Room into the indeterminate space where I need to remember why I do this.
I started Atlas to help make a conversation about less well known, but no less deserving, artists. The name Atlas was meant to evoke a sense of navigating uncharted territory. I hope to honor that name and write more and better. Please expect more interviews, more collage criticism, more narrative reviews and a spotlight on exhibitions that are not as widely discussed.
– Jeff Bergman