This tile makes me feel bad when I look at it. I don't know what it is about it but it's unsettling to look at for long. Thankfully I only had to look at it once to write my review. I don't like it when tiles make me feel bad things and I'll go as far as to say that the majority of other tiles I've looked at once made me feel better than this, I think... I am a human being with a capacity for emotion, but I want my tiles to make me feel good things. Bad emotions scare me and unsettle me.
This tile makes makes me feel bad when I look at it. I don't know what it is, perhaps it's too grey or the pattern is too ordered, but it's unsettling to look at for long. Perhaps what I am feeling is a sense of loneliness that I associate with bathrooms, we all go to the bathroom alone, usually, right? Is there really a tile that would make me feel not bad to look at? Certainly, I have the memory of better tiles than this, perhaps with a nice floral pattern? Or perhaps its the isolation of this tile from any other elements of its usual context that makes me feel lonely with it. In any case, as a being with a capacity for emotion, I will look at this tile twice to hone in on this particular emotion before I discount it as a negative one. I am a being with capacity for contradictory emotions and I am not afraid of a little loneliness.
This tile makes me feel bad when I look at it. I don't know what it is, perhaps it's too grey or the pattern is too ordered, but it's unsettling to look at for long. What I think makes it unsettling is the front-face flash photography lighting, which makes me think like I'm looking at the floor or a morgue or other sterile place. I'm thinking of the machinery involved in the production of this tile now and what functional fundamentals are involved in the necessities of this tile. The necessary modularity of the panels, the slight texture that is easy to miss when just glancing at the tile. Why do human beings need to make even the simplest, most functional mass produced item have a granular surface? I am now imagining a world in which every surface is of the same Platonic substance and texture, perhaps that of a grey egg. I am thinking of how perhaps this is sometimes how we compose images in your dreams. Now I'm back to thinking of a factory and a production line of these tiles. I think of the imperfect ones that the machinery creates and a human worker has to fish out and discard manually. I am now considering a human being defined by that characteristic, of their capacity to make aesthetic distinctions, and of where they would extend. Does the worker discard a tile with no functional blemish other than that the randomized texture it got from the machine is arranged in a way that displeases them?
And suddenly, from this train of thought it hits me and I know why this tile makes me feel sad. As a child I often looked at such manufactured surfaces and my eye would hang on faces I found in the texture, usually grotesque or comical faces. I would look away... and then look back and see if my mind could find the faces again. This was an insane little game. I remember doing this in hotels, in hospitals, in school. A restless mind in isolation. Children are often taught to sit and be patient and patience is a very difficult thing for me, I suspect as a child it was unbearable.
I am thinking now of a piece of glimmering mineral in some fractalized shape and how holding one in your hand and slowly rotating it would catch the light in different ways. I am thinking of a concept, an image, a gestalt image, and its inverted form. I am thinking of something Correct and something False. How you can turn something Correct completely around and it is now False. I am thinking of how much the Correct and the False thing would retain their contour, their outside shape in this way, how the polarity might be inverted but the function remains the same and equally opaque.
I am thinking of the tile, slowly rotating, instead. Not locked in a binary shift, instead kaleidoscopically rotating on a mad axis, light catching on its edges, shadows making grotesque caricatures dance, front face and back. I look away, and then I turn by head again.