The Secret Art of Antonin Artaud

By Jacques Derrida

Antonin Artaud (1896-1948)—stage and movie actor, director, author, drug addict, and visible artist—was a guy of rage and genius. The mystery artwork of Antonin Artaud is the 1st English translation of 2 recognized texts on his drawings and snap shots. in a single, Jacques Derrida examines the works that he first observed at the partitions of Paule Thévenin's residence. His textual content, as frenzied as Artaud's, struggles with Artaud's bizarre language and is punctuated via footnotes and asides that mirror this pressure ("How will they translate this?"). The easier textual content of Paule Thévenin describes the background of Artaud's drawings and graphics.

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Different drawings may additionally correspond to this thought of "written drawings": those are L'Immacul! ~e belief (The Immaculate perception) and Dessin a regarder de traviole (Drawing to Be checked out Sideways), which appears to be like, besides the fact that, to be of a later date. Of the 1st, in truth, it's only recognized that it used to be performed earlier than January 1946, for it figures in a listing drawn up through Antonin Artaud in that month; for the second one, its remark is found in a laptop from the top of January 1946, so it's sure that it had simply been complete. yet we all know from a letter that Antonin Artaud addresses to Dr. Ferdiere on February 28, 1946, that in this date he might nonetheless conflate writing and drawing: "The sentences that I famous at the drawing that I gave you, I sought them syllable via syllable, aloud and dealing difficult, to determine if any verbal sonorities have been positioned that will be able to supporting somebody taking a look at my drawing to appreciate it. " five five If the written components of the drawing itself are there with a purpose to aid with a greater knowing of it, what's the function of these texts that sometimes touch upon them? Is it simply because his drawings weren't regularly bought as he could have cherished that Antonin Artaud quite often felt the necessity to light up them via extra remark? Or may well it now not be as a way to extend their resonance by way of accompanying them with a textual content which, learn or, greater, declaimed, might double the results, whereas appearing in a different way, affecting different issues of our sensitivity? both cause may possibly simply inspire this sort of technique. regrettably, the records that experience come right down to us don't regularly let us to affiliate the drawings and the remark: yes commentaries have outlasted the drawings to which they can practice, to not today stumbled on or pointed out; in different circumstances, we've the drawing or the hint that it existed, yet no longer the observation. The latter weren't possibly constantly written in a scientific style to use to every drawing. these ultimate have considerable details for us at the manner within which Antonin Artaud then envisaged his drawings and his personal relation to the inert topic that awarded itself to him: the paper on which he used to be going to venture phrases, items, and phantoms of beings. the standard of the help concerns little to him: "Fine paper encourages you to make masterpieces, coarse and repulsive paper encourages you to make precious and wanted works that may not have the capacity to cross as appealing. " fifty six That the standard of the paper is mediocre doesn't trouble him within the slightest. to the contrary, it obliges him to a harsher necessity, to a extra acute vigilance, the paper being an adversary to beat and that he has to 25 traverse-going a long way past it-so as to motivate the kinds that the hand has brought on upon it to head on and reside, an adversary to be dirty, crumpled, scraped to the very restrict of perforation, spoiled and set to shrieking. This virulent fight of the belief to come back to sunlight, no matter what bruises and wounds it takes, that is what those drawings may still express us, precisely what Antonin Artaud desires to have artwork settle for, exceeding the boundaries of artwork, as he desires it to confess the plain clumsiness of the drawn line: This drawing is a grave try and supply existence and lifestyles to what till this present day had by no means been approved in paintings, the botching of the subjectile, the piteous awkwardness of types crumbling round an idea after having for therefore many eternities worked to hitch it.

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