Today’s lecture was about modern art and artists – as usual, it fell to me to give the vote of thanks. I’d spent the first few minutes of the talk feeling quite anxious – what on earth was I going to say on a subject I had studied so little? However, it was an enthralling lecture with wonderful pictures, and I found I had to condense my enthusiastic reactions to fit the customary couple of minutes.
But there was one question that I had to pose – and the lecturer didn’t know the answer. Check, if you please, this link, scroll down to ‘Divided Self’ and, if you wish, click on that to enlarge. It is a still photo from a ten-minute film of the artist, D0uglas G0rd0n, wrestling one arm with another. He has shaved one of his arms – if you saw the film without realising that, you would think it was two people fighting – maybe a man assaulting a woman and she fighting back.
So, what I want to know is – after filming, did the artist shave his other arm, or did he go around like that for months? I really need to know. He’d be a fabulous living art exhibit with arms like that, but creepy, dreadfully creepy. Quite difficult to cope with I should think, making every shop assistant, waiter, passing stranger, squeak and recoil with horror whenever they saw his hands. And the grow-back, ew, stubbly.