There follow another seven of the collages from Max Ernst’s 1929 collage-novel, La Femme 100 Têtes (‘The Hundred-Headless Woman’). As in the previous entry, below, my source for these images (and for the quotations that accompany them), was the book Max Ernst edited by Edward Quinn, published by the New York Graphic Society in 1977.
Where and when did collage first appear? I believe, despite the claims put forward by several of the pioneers of Dada, that it is Max Ernst who is to be thanked for it, at least as regards the two forms of collage furthest from the original idea of glued paper: photographic collage and the collage of illustrations - Louis Aragon, La Peinture au défi, (1930).
If it is the plumes that make the plumage, it is not the glue [la colle] that makes the gluing [le collage]. One day in the summer of 1929, a painter I knew asked me: ‘What are you doing these days? Are you working?’ I replied: ‘Yes, I'm making gluings [collages]. I'm preparing a book that will be called La Femme 100 Têtes.’ Then he whispered in my ear: ‘And what sort of glue do you use?’ With that modest air that my contemporaries admire in me I was obliged to confess to him that in most of my collages there wasn't any glue at all… Max Ernst (1936), from Beyond Painting (1948).
The elements he [Max Ernst] borrows are, above all, elements that have been drawn, and it is the drawing that is most frequently replaced by collage. Here collage becomes a poetic process, perfectly opposable in its aims to the collage of the Cubists, which is primarily realistic in intention. Max Ernst borrows his elements principally from printed drawings, drawings for advertisements, dictionary illustrations, popular images, newspaper photographs. He blends them so skilfully into his pictures that sometimes one hardly suspects their presence… - Louis Aragon, from Max Ernst, peintre des illusions (1923).
The titles of the collages above are as follows: Loplop and the mouse’s horoscope; Let us give thanks unto Satan and rejoice in the goodwill he has shown us; The eye without eyes, the hundred-headless woman keeps her secret; The Eternal Father vainly endeavours to separate light from darkness; Spiritual repose; Loplop and The Fair Gardener and The Hundred-Headless Woman Loosens her Majestic Sleeve. Clicking on the images will open enlarged versions of the same.Posted by misteraitch at July 4, 2004 08:16 AM | TrackBack