October 25, 2007

Really a response to the posts on anamorphosis...

...but I couldn't figure out how to insert an image into a comment, so I just created a new post.

Another example that I thought of while reading about Holbein's anamorphosis was Salvador Dali... many of his paintings, being surrealist, include these same sort of distortions that are not equally visible (comprehensible?) from every perspective. One of my favorite examples of this is in \The Hallucinogenic Toreador\. What, from one angle, looks like a line of women's half-clothed bodies appears, from another angle, to be the bottoms of men's faces (presumably the toreadors) and the necks of their shirts. Not only does this fascinate me from a production standpoint (I am no artist, and I have no idea how one goes about painting one thing, much less one thing that could be another from a different angle), but I also find it interesting in that many of Dali's paintings also include religious imagery (such as Jesus' face in the top lefthand corner of this painting). It again harks back to the Latour article and the relationship between the first and the second regimes. Perhaps in this case, this distortion could be seen as alluding to the possibility of multiple readings but the impossibility of ever reading them in both ways simultaneously.

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