While continuing to experiment with using drawing to critique the critic in this blog series on Mieka Bal’s Quoting Caravaggio I note that artists own quotes of Bacchic elements on the one hand, and Michelangelo on the other whom he transforms. Michelangelo’s characteristic pointing hand is borrowed into contexts in which the idea of readable sign is transformed into an enigma, and the Caravaggian Bacchus elements take the vision of psyche presencing to visuathe link is to the cover of Immersions – a book of cyber drawings you can find on Lulu on the theme of knowledge sensation from within drawing that immersed within the art experience challenges language from within. The idea finds moments of realization to theories ranging from Deleuze and Artaud to Architectural stagings of Modernism in succesive waves of apperception taking another look.
The levels of perception that occur to finding art in time, ie the famous Janus theory of relating to past and present through the experience of present assimilation, putting into ones own words the moments of a present understanding that takes the essence of the subject to new ground experientially of perception to perception. The finding of perspective ranges from identifying to the artists understanding or goals, of also the depth of the experience that goes beyond what the artist may have intended, or of the experience of simply learning as much as one can from the artist.
To find a point of view out of the mode one creates of these moods one may start with dialectic- the classical rhetoric or language logos of interpersonal give and take with much finessing of language arrangements, or on the philosophical levels consult hermeneutic organization, epistemology, ontological recognition and cognition, more cognates of knowledge structuralism to semantics of what is known, the cataloguings of taxonomies branching to semiotics, or in the realms of narratology evaluate the intra temporalities of mimesis or diegetic ( involved with personlization).
Yet while the visual art experience as a philosophic object touches on language this touch stone is commented on per levels of perception according to language which yet is refering to its ownd domain of word ie the written-spoken… the art word of the art experience per the medium meets these levels via its own word to be translated… but how does one approach the narrative levels of abstraction shall we say, in art, according to art?
Simple: through drawing- drawing is the philosophy of art or as Ingres put it the “probity”. Drawing uses the mark, the line, to temporize material, hold it in abeyance to a realization that is forthcoming in a string of sensations as Cezanne put it. There is an inbuilt duality because to see one thing one must see another, the famous figure ground. Memory itself is similarly composed…. we remember things in relation to a ground I would say – do you think so?
Aloha Ala Outllity of the immediate present in an indeterminate zone . David of Marat seems to have been enamored of the idea of restoring this possible- indeterminacy back to a current theme, just as displaced Roman Wall Painters decorated the catacombs. I reference the third- decorative Roman Wall Painting in my title while writing on Caravaggio because the decorative transformation of what had previously been a Roman interest in finding a plastic massing that spread mass of a Dionesian subject matter for walls was as a transformation then into that decorative mode following the first impulses a motion to create a vocabulary within architecture itself, the architecture at first visually modified, now visually modifying. This in turn reflects on Carravgagio through that sense of disjunction in which his use of Chiaroscuro allows him to create joints and connections within the “passages” of directive patterning of like tones. Areas of detailing then have complemetary areas that simply collect vectors, and so speed the eye. The Quote Bal provides from Deleuze give a pictorial psyche to this principle:”Moving from a branching of inflection, we distinguish a point that is no longer what runs along the inflection, nor is it the point of the inflection itself, it is the one in which the lines perpendicular to tangents meet in a state of variation. It is not exactly a point but a place, a position, a site, “linear focus”, a line emanating from lines. To the degree it represents variation or inflection it can be called a point of view.
Michelangelo provided two siglia or symbols for the artists work. One was his characteristing drawing flourish, a kind of witness to the formal structure of his psychic-physical scan that was corollary to his use of introducing his own portrait hand in his works, reprsenting most likely his position on the Renaissance controversy on the hierarch of the senses between touch and sight, sculpture and painting, and his hand therefore was the sculptors touch… which I mention in relation to Carravagio because the pointing which is so adaptable to our own syntax of philosophical “pointing”. The Roman Wall painting third style was taking the idea of trope as Hersey presents it in his Lost Meaning of Classical Architecture in which the dismantling of forms into language signs productive of general categories of punning is the state of what we call analysis was then and now interrupted thereby to the patrons own interests in the construction of a site with a determinative capacity to personal status as an individual. This individuation as we positively term to psychology has had an alternative interpretation by Berenson in his treatise Homeless Paintings of the Renaisance in which he pointed out that the auctioning of f of these paintings into the private sector kept them away from the public there fore were according to him now homeless, and so in this reverse then, he returned as it were to the agora as home when he so termed these paintings as homeless… Anthony Rifkin likewise in his book Ingres Then and Now looks into the new Parisian shopping arcades where conversely- the market place now refkective of the merchant as individual were building gallery like shops, and so the Salons of Proust in which the nobility in their cloistered existence made themselves and their world art objects of a certain conceit so now the the merchant restored to the Agora this process with said merchants now individualized to an imaging process, a vocabulary following….The Roman Patrons in stressing the walls as architecture were preparing a visual realm for architectural experience in which images then had the capacity to cross back and forth between architecture itself and the variability of its projections.
The Deleuze description can also be retraced to a visualization of the drawing process in which the western use of a diagonal in hatching shows a long axis on one source then again a transverse at another point in the picture, and correspondingly the transversals a slight dislocation from the slope of the insertions of plastic mass entering or rounding on the structure from the linear vector. That Caravaggio famously may have used pre photographic techniques of the projection screen to field the hand to a kind of pause was given a reverse by Franz Kline when the photographic moment instead took in the whole gesture, and so from the kind of Expressionism of say Franz Marc in which the hand is impulse the impulse becomes a context largely writ. Vincent Long was the NY artist who first initiated the interest in Caravaggio, very much out of reflection on the contextualizing inherent in this process… his adherents to the concept of creating context in this new tradition were correspondingly Eric Fishl and David Salle. Realists tend to suffer their own contextualization by being seen as the pets of surrounding movements and indeed realism itself is a kind of petting… I believe Louise Bourgeois comments on this in her spider series. In that series the creature that has spun while we spin, from cave to castle was the spider, as undomesticated as was the dog domesticated… and the hands hold on environment even today meets the enthusiasm for the cell phone as portability of information, This portability, grounded also in medieval ivories and books, elements that could carry home within the carriage as one went about all have a domestic pattern. Caravaggio is an artist whose narrative follows him wherever he went he seems to have found things a reality he was ready to move…
Franz ah ah Hall? hmmmm… Hall Marc?
Anyway… worth remembering… it is the Dionysian element, the sense of transformation that stems from the fable of Dionysus transforming the pirate boat that meant to take him away into a tree, and this as a grove emblematic of architecture of classic design vocabulary in which the elements of sacrifices that were reconstituted became the symbol for the language of symbolization and analysis, breaking terms down, recombining categories, transferals and puns, word play and language adaptation,suggestibility, context and contest…