In the pursuit of a better understanding of life, I have been investigating the work of Albert Camus, specifically his essay “The Myth of Sisyphus”. In this work, Camus examines Sisyphus; a mortal man, condemned by the gods “to ceaselessly rolling a rock to the top of a mountain, whence the stone would fall back of its own weight.” In this story Sisyphus watches “the stone rush down…whence he will have to push it up again.” The a moment in this interaction that Camus is most interested in is “what [Sisyphus] thinks of during his descent.” Camus states, “[the Gods] had thought with some reason that there is no more dreadful punishment than [this] futile and hopeless labor.” However, he suggests that; “If the descent is thus sometimes performed in sorrow it can also take place in joy.” Acceptance of the absurd allows Sisyphus to give in to the struggle and enjoy it for what it is. “Happiness and the absurd are two sons of the same earth.” “All Sisyphus’ joy is contained therein. His fate belongs to him. His rock is his thing.” “The struggle itself toward the heights is enough to fill a man’s heart. One must imagine Sisyphus happy.”
Camus looks at “the workman of today [who] works every day in his life at the same tasks” and concludes, “his fate is no less absurd.” Therefore, upon applying this philosophy to present life, one must accept the absurdity of our life. This acceptance leads to the understanding that the struggle is the reason to exist. The “rock” is what enables us to be happy. Embrace the struggle; enjoy it! “Our joy is contained therein.” Be happy.
Crafted using the visual language found in mundane and ordinary life, this work pursues the understanding and acceptance of the absurdity of the human experience. "Hole in One" is a platform for viewers to physically engage with this philosophy. Through interaction, participants directly experience the value and joy of the simple and the absurd. Many parallels can be drawn between this myth and “Hole in One.” As Sisyphus struggles to push his rock to the top of the hill; participants struggle to accurately putt theirs down. As Sisyphus returns to his boulder at the bottom of the hill, participants return to the putting platform at the top of the hill. It is there in that moment, before they attempt their putt again, that they realize the absurdity of their struggle. Acknowledging and accepting this absurdity they continue on empowered, joyous, and humorously prepared for all of life’s other absurd struggles.
Quotes taken from: "The Myth of Sisyphus" by Albert Camus