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What a wee little part of a person’s life are his acts and his words! His real life is led in his head, and is known to none but himself.” — Twain

Greetings, I’m artist and author M.T. Karthik, known as Karthik or MTK, and though I agree with Mr. Clemens, I’ve put together this mid-career archive of some of my acts, thoughts and ideas. This is all original writing and documentation of things I made and performances I gave until the age of 50.

Existence is beyond our capacity to define,” is something Lao-Tzu is said to have taught, and though I agree with the great Chinese teacher, my active, human, mortal mind generates absurdities, abstractions and concrete expressions and I travel, attempting to organize it all, to put it all together, to label and name parts of it and to understand how others name and label parts of it. I study the taxonomy of species around me.

In the four decades covered here, I circled the world several times, living for years mostly in California – the San Francisco Bay AreaLos Angeles – but also in New York City, New Orleans, Austin, San Antonio, Japan, India and Taiwan.

I have not landed. I don’t own property. I am mostly of nowhere and homeless; mostly unknown in both my birth nation and the nation to which I’m naturalized as a citizen. I’m most like ash on the wind or a stone skipping across a lake.

To that end, I wrote everything on this site – the poetry, essays, fiction and reviews – and produced all the video and photographs (all the images in the headers above) and, in 2017, occupied the node mtkarthik dot org and removed advertising so you can peruse free of distractions.

You can follow me currently on my Youtube site where I post videos like this:


M.T. Karthik

Oakland, 2012 and San Antonio, 2017