Unreal Nature

April 19, 2019

Spinning Around in Your Head

Filed under: Uncategorized — unrealnature @ 6:00 am

… you … go through endless labyrinths of the past, sometimes dressed up as the future. Or is it the other way round?

This is from Sweet Nothings: Notes and Texts by Marlene Dumas, edited by Mariska van den Berg (2015). For those of you not familiar with her, Dumas is a painter:

It’s hard for me to work next to and with someone whose work I like, not that it’s not exciting. Although I work alone and with printed matter as my models, I’ve always been attracted to photographers who work with real people. But it doesn’t seem to bring out the best in me. It’s the same with live models (whatever their occupation). I worry about what they think of me and I get even more worried about what they think I think of them. And then I lose the freedom of the amoral touch which for me is requisite for making good painting.


Sometimes when you dream you know that you are almost awake and dawn is on its way and yet you get stuck in a nightmare that keeps on repeating itself. Images of different times spinning around in your head in a frenzy, forcing you to go through endless labyrinths of the past, sometimes dressed up as the future. Or is it the other way round? Gothic versions of stories you’ve once read somewhere, pictures you saw or tales you’ve been told in the dark.

… I recently heard someone quote the German director Werner Herzog. He was filming in the South American jungle in 1982 and was asked to comment on the beauty of the nature around him. ‘Ze birds are in misery. I don’t zing zey zing, zey just screech in pain.’

And then there is this fragment from the story of the Brothers Grimm, The Juniper Tree: ‘A bird rises up from a mysterious fire that appears in the tree, like a mist, and sings, ‘My mother she killed me. My father he ate me. My sister Marlinchen, she gathered up my bones. Tweet, tweet, what a lovely bird I am!”‘

That last segment was from Dumas’ commentary on the work of Natasja Kensmil.

My most recent previous post from Dumas‘ book is here.

-Julie

http://www.unrealnature.com/

 

Blog at WordPress.com.

%d bloggers like this: