Sunday, December 19, 2010

Unica Zürn ~ Orakel und Spektacle

"Unica Zürn (1916-1970), a German Surrealist painter/writer made a series of psychologically intense line drawings that combine Surrealist automatism with the mania of Outsider Art and a certain residue of contemporary experiments in psychedelic drugs. Erotic and trancelike, the works depict fantastic chimeras, bizarre creatures with double faces that represent multiplications of herself, either repeated across the page or set in intricate dream landscapes of mystic animals and otherworldly plant forms. Unica Zürn's “hallucinatory chimeras” prime examples of the surrealist technique of automatic drawing." A Stone for Unica Zurn

An excerpt from:
Dark Spring by Unica Zürn

Each time, she finds herself tormented by her terrible fear of the rattling skeleton of a huge gorilla, which she believes inhabits the house at night. The sole purpose of his existence is to strangle her to death. In passing, she looks, as she does every night, at the large Rubens painting depicting "The Rape of the Sabine Women." These two naked, rotund women remind her of her mother and fill her with loathing. But she adores the two dark, handsome robbers, who lift the women onto their rearing horses. She implores them to protect her from the gorilla. She idolizes a whole series of fictional heroes who return her gaze from the old, dark paintings that hang throughout the house. One of them reminds her of Douglas Fairbanks, whom she adored as a pirate and as the "Thief of Baghdad" in the movie theater at school. She is sorry she must be a girl. She wants to be a man, in his prime, with a black beard and flaming black eyes. But she is only a little girl whose body is bathed in sweat from fear of discovering the terrible gorilla in her room, under her bed. She is tortured by fears of the invisible.

Who knows whether or not the skeleton will crawl up the twines of ivy that grow on the wall below her window, and then slip into her room. His mass of hard and pointed bones will simply crush her inside her bed. Her fear turns into a catastrophe when she accidentally bumps into the sabers, which fall off the wall with a clatter in the dark. She runs to her room as fast as she can and slams the door shut behind her. She turns the key and bolts the door. One again, she has come out of this alive. Who knows what will happen tomorrow night?


BeccaFromAbove said...

I don't think there is quite a way to eloquently how much I appreciate this blog and how much effort you put into each post. These pictures and these delicate and what really caught my eye, but then reading these delicate bu factual, informative elements are amazing.
So thank you :)

Diana said...

It's really good to see Unica Zurn receiving some of the attention she so richly deserves. Thank you.