Sunday, May 2, 2010

wild things and deep songs

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On at the Melbourne Museum is an exhibition called Wild. There are a number of trams with posters advertising the exhibition going around Melbourne, which is where I first 'heard' about it. David Neale also wrote about it on his blog. I went last week and I loved it. It is sort of crazy and inspiring at the same time. An exhibition where most of the stuffed animals are brought out and displayed all together. I am sure that the live versions of these animals would not sit so harmoniously together. It reminded me a little of the amazing display at the Grande Galerie de l'Evolution in Paris.

























































































I have been painting animals lately, and the way that the displays here have been brought together reminded me of how I have been looking at animals and what happens when you place unexpected animals together. In previous work I have used animals and birds as a way of exploring notions of 'place'. With my new body of work I have continued this exploration but have also been influenced by the writings of Federico Garcia Lorca, most notably his lectures on the Play and Theory of Duende and Deep Song.  Animals now become a signifier of other forces and energies. Lorca quotes Manuel Torre, in his lecture on Duende, that "All that has dark sounds has duende". He goes on to write :

These "black sounds" are the mystery, the roots fastened in the mire that we all know and all ignore, the fertile silt that gives us the very substance of art. "Black sounds", said that man of the Spanish people, concurring with Goethe, who defined the duende while speaking of Paganini: "A mysterious power which everyone senses and no philosopher explains."

In Deep Song, Lorca states that :

Deep song is akin to the trilling of birds, the crowing of the rooster, and the natural music of forest and fountain.







 


 ink and watercolour on paper
320mm x 240mm
















ink and watercolour on paper
320mm x 240mm 
























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