Meditation on Emotions

“I can only note that the past is beautiful because one never realizes an emotion at the time. It expands later, and thus we don't have complete emotions about the present, only about the past.”

Virginia Woolf
A piece of paper charred in the center by a small explosion.
Marco Breuer (German, b. 1966)
Untitled (Fuse), 1996
gelatin silver print, 18 ½ x 14 ½ (47 x 36.8 cm)
Gift of Vicky A. Clark, 2007.71
© Marco Breuer

Bring awareness to yourself and your thoughts with this Meditation on Emotions, using Untitled (Fuse) by Marco Breuer as inspiration.

Follow along with the audio or text below.

Step-by-Step Meditation

Listen to Meditation on Emotions:


  1. This photograph was created by exposing the photographic paper directly to a lit fuse. The resulting image is a visual memory of the sparks against the paper.
  2. Sit quietly and contemplate the action of making this photograph.
  3. Bring your awareness to the center of the image. Follow the lines that radiate out from the center.
  4. Reflect on the common idiom to “blow a fuse,” and how it represents human emotion.
  5. How could this work reflect an emotional state? Imagine the center as an important event from your past, with all the small lines and dots expanding outward as the emotional effects of that memory.
  6. Close your eyes and focus on the emotion associated with the memory.
  7. Notice how the effects of this emotion radiate outward, effecting your mind and even physical body, like the lines of the photograph.
  8. Continue like this as you build greater insight into your emotions and the impact they have.

This work is on view in Scaife Gallery C.


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