AUTOBIOGRAPHICAL FICTION

IMAGINATION

GUEST COLUMN

Mar 022014
 

(notes for a lecture)

Self-image, introspection and consciousness, reflecting in the other (empathy and imitation, Theory of Mind, mirror neurons, Dialogical Self Theory), visual history of mirrors and self-portraits, the ego of the artist (from anonymous masters to ‘The Death of the Author’ to ‘The Artist is Present’),  echo, rhyme and palindrome, the Double (Goethe’s Faust, Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde, the characters in Dostoyevsky and Gogol), flatness, frame, detail, abstraction, collage, the ‘Droste effect’ and ‘The Text within the Text’ (Yuri Lotman).

138_29271_1 001

Self-image, introspection and consciousness,

P1100786

reflecting in the other,

reza_abbasi_young_lovers

empathy and imitation, Theory of Mind, mirror neurons

1024px-Makak_neonatal_imitation-mirror-neuron,

Dialogical Self Theory,

tumblr_ktioqkJQC91qze1jro1_500

visual history of mirrors and self-portraits,

DSCF0952

the ego of the artist (from anonymous masters to ‘The Death of the Author’ to ‘The Artist is Present’),

Hans_Memling_026

echo (coincidentally in love with Narcissus),

Narcissus-Caravaggio_(1594-96)_kl

rhyme and palindrome,

DSCF0788

the Double (Goethe’s Faust, Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde, the characters in Dostoyevsky and Gogol),

DSCF1784

flatness, frame, detail, abstraction, collage,

0309216328r41d

the ‘Droste effect’ and ‘The Text within the Text’ (Yuri Lotman).

pictures:
Johannes Gumpp (1646)
KG 2013
Reza Abbasi, Two Lovers (1630) – lovers with the same faces
illustration from wiki->mirror neuron
stuffed squirrels, Walter Potter
KG 2013
Hans Memling, St. Veronica’s Veil (1483)
Caravaggio, Narcissus (1597–1599)
2 x KG 2013
Japanese woodblock prints (have to retrace the authors still)
KG 2013

DSCF1250 copy

A novel is a mirror

 Posted by on 02/02/2013  Mirrors, Myths  Tags:, , ,
Feb 022013
 

A novel is a mirror carried along a high road.
A novel is a mirror that strolls along a highway.
A novel is a mirror which passes over a highway.
A novel is a mirror walking along a main road.
A novel: it’s a mirror you take for a walk down the road.
(different translations of Stendhal’s famous quote from The Red and the Black)

kolobok

kolobok

My friend and a former classmate Kim Bouvy told me this story recently. I was rolling ‘snowballs’ from sawdust and wood glue for an art school assignment – definition of identity. When asked to explain my idea behind it, I said: ‘That’s the Russian way – you roll on and things stick’.
To me now it sounds like a rather fatalistic (very Russian indeed) life philosophy. My hopeful genetic instinct tells me that good things stick and bad experiences you learn from.
I don’t remember those sawdust balls, it was 17 years ago.
As much as I like Stendhal, I believe that objective storytelling is a contradictio in terminis.

Kolobok is a cocky dough ball from a Russian fairytale that tries but fails to escape his fate of being eaten.
I told my mother what I was writing; she said that Kolobok was happy the whole time he was rolling.

KG 2006 c-print

KG 2006 c-print