RU  UK  EN
Articles  >  Enjoy  >  No Battery: Tortures with Art

No Battery: Tortures with Art

Author: 17.12.2015 | art, society, personalities
There is a reason why they say that even goods things are good to an extent – even art served in a certain manner may not just bring joy and help experience catharsis but also break psyche down. On how exactly beauty serves as an instrument of torture – read below in Outlook.

No Sleep, No Hiding

French painter and musician Alphonse Laurencic was the world’s first man to prove that art is a perfect instrument of torture and psychological pressure. In 1930s, during Civil War in Spain he actively supported the republicans. Having opted for brushes instead of weapons and being inspired by works of Kandinsky, Dali and Buñuel, Laurencic, who, according to his contemporaries, was also extremely talented, created so-called color rooms with no windows. Their walls were covered in psychedelic installations and paintings in surreal style. Various objects were affixed to their floors not to let a prisoner lie down and stretch out and what seemed to be a bed was designed to make it impossible to fall asleep – body would constantly slide. These cameras were called La Cheka and Francoists, who were at war with republicans, ended up there more often than others. This, at first glance, funny punishment in fact made prisoners go insane for they had to sleeplessly stare at abstract picture art in very bright colors day and night. It isn’t positively known how many people lost their sanity in such a way exactly, but the fact that as nearly as the first thing Franco’s allies did, upon seizing the power in the country, was to sentence Laurencic, not political or military figures, to death tells volumes.

ЭКСПЕРИМЕНТ МАРИИ ПРОНИНОЙ from Mitec on Vimeo.

Burgess Wrote It All

Everyone who has read Anthony Burgess’s Clockwork Orange will never forget scenes of “re-education” of its main character Alex. One of the methods of influence on him was compulsory review of special films and videos. It seems like the book has made huge impression on a British painter Luke Turner and an American actor Shia LaBeouf who came up with #AllMyMovies performance and put into practice. In mid-November 2015 Shia LaBeouf spent three days at Angelika Film Center, New York watching movies, where he starred, without a break. During the marathon everybody, who wanted to, could join the star for free and there was also an online broadcast of the actor’s emotions during review. What Shia went through and how it was for him to see himself on screen in such amounts is still a mystery because after the review he remains tight-lipped and avoids media by all means.

Body Is Canvas

Famous Serbian artist Marina Abramović is considered “Godmother” of performances of all kinds. In over 50 years of creative work she shocked audience on numerous occasions with various actions and almost every time she used own body as the main instrument. Rhythm 0 torture turned out especially remarkable. In 1947, naked, she was locked with visitors of one of galleries in Naples; there were 72 various objects, from roses and candles to whips and knives, placed on the table and a notice hanged saying that the body of the artist was at disposal of people around and that they could do anything with it. At first suspecting-nothing audience were perplexed but then, having realized that there was no way to leave the gallery, they entered the game, as if pretending, however it was more and more painful for the woman every other minute. Several hours later Marina’s body was covered with abrasions, cuts and blood and there was no stopping the public. Ultimately, as doors opened, the artist was dragged out of the hall. According to herself, her experiment turned a success and she easily proved that should you let people, they become violent animals.

Marina Abramovic on Rhythm 0 (1974) from Marina Abramovic Institute on Vimeo.

Ice Attraction

Chinese dissident and sculptor Qi Lei decided to challenge ice and demonstrate that inner creative energy will be enough to melt it. To do that he came up with a cold torture for himself – he trapped his own body in an ice block. However, aside from fans and assistants, the Chinese by and large developed no interest in the performance and decided that Qi Lei required psychological help therefore almost immediately after plunge into freeze the action was interrupted by an ambulance car that took the artist to the hospital with freeze burns. He was very upset that he wasn’t given a chance to compete with ice and was written an administrative fine on top of it, so no one was really surprised when a year later he committed a suicide without recovering from a depression.

Ears Suffer, Brain Melts

As we can see, majority of tortures with art or in the name of art one way or another are connected to painters and artists. They either torture others or voluntarily excruciate themselves. However things that happened (information is classified so nobody knows if such cases keep occurring) in American prisons Abu Ghraib and Guantanamo relate to artists only circumstantially. Popular music is one of the most powerful instruments used during interrogation especially when lyrics were in English and a recipient was an Arab. Hundreds of prisoners, when out of jail, admitted that the most horrible for them was impact of music – when they were made listen to same songs at top volume for 16 hours. Then a break with complete silence came for everything to start over again afterwards. Sleepless and washed-out, they confessed even to thing they never committed. Such cases, that were especially frequent during war in Iraq, became public fare as a result of journalistic investigations. Many famous musicians like Eminem and Marilyn Manson as well as Queen and Metallica bands and others were surprised to see own hits in “madness track lists”, that were published by media; they now intend to sue CIS. Alongside pure ethical cause there is also a legal one – copyright violation. It is yet to be discovered if artists, who involuntarily became accomplices in crimes against humanity, will succeed in punishing those in fault. At times art of completely different styles that is designed to bring emotions, mostly positive, may exert completely opposite influence. And there aren’t many people who have it within their powers to comprehend it!

It will be interesting:
STEP OVER THRESHOLD: THE MAGICAL ART OF THE HUICHOL PEOPLE
Dazzling flashes of ancient knowledge manifested in colourful shimmering beads and in elaborated yarn mosaics by Huichol Indians, captivate the imagination calling for an endless journey through branches of the world tree. Spiritual images take on flesh in intricate ornaments that accompany a Mexican peasant throughout his life. Twilight land of legends always have a shelter for a weary traveller: no one is alone on the paths of spirits.
Divine mugham: the music of Azerbaijan
There is music which brings us back to life. It happens even if the tears are falling when one listens to it. The musical genre mugham talks to the audience using the right language. Everyone has lived out unhappy love, loss of a close person or ruin of ideals. These topics became the source of inspiration for the musicians of Azerbaijan movement mugham. OUTLOOK will tell about this unique style of music.
Artaud theatre: life is imitation of art
The power of gestures burns the text to ashes, sound deafens and takes to the abyss from which all of us come and where we return upon the accomplishment of a short time period called as the life. Attending the Theatre of Cruelty, a human appears in the centre of performance as there are everything we are hiding from in the everyday routine, particularly, freedom and isolation, life on the border, merging with the crows till self is lost and lonely residing at the top. The drama of being involves in its mineral resources, the echo of tragedy overwhelms publics and spectator without noticing it appears in the trap of the own perception. That is about the so-called ‘Theatre of Cruelty’ (theatre de cruaute), the child of French playwright and director, eccentric and shocking Antonen Artaud.
Fado: gentleness and deftness of Portuguese romances
Twelve-string guitar, the twilight of Portuguese nights, candles, and soul-gripping voice… Dramatic incentives of fado song tell about unrequited love. It cannot appear in the crossroads of destinies; however, it enables feelings to embody into the touching sounds of Portuguese romances.
In Kyiv the Embassies of Lithuania and Australia demonstrated the photo exhibition ‘Olegas Truchanas – legend of Lithuania and Australia’
The Embassy of Lithuanian Republic to Ukraine, the Embassy of Australia to Ukraine and National Museum of Taras Shevchenko represented in Kyiv the photo exhibition ‘Olegas Truchanas – legend of Lithuania and Australia’.
History of a Brand: Cirque du Soleil
Spectacular show project Cirque du Soleil rocked the world of circus art to remind that circus can not only entertain but also create new reality. Crazy experiments on human body defy any power on gravity and miracle-plays of sound and light lure the audience into a twilight labyrinth of philosophical dramas letting them get to the sun together with characters of stagings.
Not just black
November 3, 2008, at the auction Sotheby's with a result of $ 60 million was sold one of the rarest works in the history of Russian art - Kazimir Malevich's Suprematist Composition. Malevich is still considered to be one of the most difficult to understand artists of the 20th century.Kazimir Malevich is still one of the most difficult to understand artists of the 20th century. As if mocking at the public, he signed some of his early works: The content of the paintings unknown to the author. OUTLOOK collected stories connected with personality, creativity, and the name of the artist and hopes that it will bring readers to understand the suprematist.
The Sistine Chapel Illusions
More than fifteen hundred years ago Romans were awe struck when they caught the very first sight of the Sistine Chapel. After that masters of painting were born and dead as well as whole pictural art styles. And contemporaries of you and me gape on the distinguished temple. However, while admiring another line intricacy and allusive painting theme, bear in mind that beneath the plot of glossy surface, as per usual, stand painfully familiar disputes with an impatient client, unpleasant surprises from nature and damaged health of painters-executants.
No Cliché
Can you imagine a German who is late? Or a Japanese who sits in the office during working hours and twiddles his thumbs? Or at least a Spaniard who beavers away from morning till night? Hardly – and it is all courtesy of stereotypes and clichés that are stuck to one people or another. Today we not only talk about them – we defy them.
Mandala Therapy
Yesterday I created a Universe. I took some peas, rice, buckwheat, millet, black and white pepper seeds and cardamom. Grabbed a handful of coffee and aniseeds. Then it all acquired a centre. It kept growing and calming my thoughts. When the last seed landed in the circle, I felt forgotten harmony again, heard birds singing through the noise of cars on the avenue, sensed fragrance of violets that a neighbor of mine was growing on her balcony and a recollection of Funtik from floor 5 and his tail evoked a flush of tenderness towards the shaggy monster.
SERGEI POLUNIN: BALLET, INTRIGUE, PROVOCATION
On the 26-th of October it will be going a desirable premier of documental and biographic movie ‘Dancer’ on the price of success paid by the artist of ballet Serhii Polunin. Being originated from Kherson, he accidentally appeared in the Royal Theater in London where he became an overnight success but then went off the grid to get even more love of the spectators. Today OUTLOOK continues the cycle of materials about successful Ukrainians.
Incredible school lessons
Grinding away at their books to master basics of algebra and geometry, or memorizing years of monarchs’ reign skimming history textbooks is commonplace for schoolchildren all over the world while getting ready for a test in cybersecurity or boasting to have “A”s in beekeeping is strange at the vey least. Hereafter we are going to touch upon these and other unusual classes taught in foreign schools.
The great curves: Friedensreich Hundertwasser
He made up his name to be one of a kind. Riot of his selfhood became the basis for enormous artistic heritage while architecture demonstrated the possibility to combine ecological compatibility with modern technologies.
Eastern music of Sufi: Qawali
‘Love evolves when one looks in the eyes of the person beloved seeing there God’, in such a way the lines of some Arabian song called Qawali is translated. The authorship of this chant is ascribed to Eastern strangers Sufi who tending to find the sense of existence strolled around the half an Earth bare-footed. In the travels they composed songs where they told narration describing what they had to endure.
It’s all in your hands. Why it is useful to be ambidextrous
Ambidextrous people demonstrate the unique brain abilities confirming latent human genius. Interestingly, those abilities can be trained by hands. The recent studies show that there are more people born equally skilled with either upper limb than we think, and perhaps you are one of them.
THORNY PATH OF FLOWER
Traditional Japanese kabuki theatre has always been a mystery to the European mentality: only an expert on the culture of the Land of the Rising Sun can understand a play without guide’s tips.
Not by tower alone
The word is, Guy de Maupassant hated Eiffel Tower. The famous writer believed that it was uglifying the face of Paris without benefiting the city. Nevertheless, he could be often seen in a cozy cafe on the top of the construction. In such cases the author of “Bel Ami” used to say that “it was the only way the damned tower dropped out of his sight…”
THE GHOST BRUSH OF MISS HOKUSAI
The eccentric elder Katsushika Hokusai was the real star of the Edo period, the creative genius and the brutal debtor of the half of his city. He used at least 30 names, changed 93 houses and created a lot of prints, drawings and paintings. His internationally recognized print The Great Wave off Kanagawa is mesmerizing. But only a few people know that this block printing, as well as many other works, was created by Hokusai with assistance of his daughter - artist Katsushika Ōi, lost in time and overshadowed by her genius father crazy about art.
Swedish Loner Ingmar Bergman
On July 14, 1918 in a Swedish town called Uppsala a man was born to create over 50 movies and direct several dozens of plays that raised the ante in art to an almost inaccessible level. Even today while watching his film created as much as half a century ago you realize that there is nothing they’ve lost – it’s more like they’ve gained.
In Kyiv open the exhibition and mural by the author KLONE
KLONE is artist who was born in Ukraine. He left country when he was eleven years old. That is why he pays a special credit to the opportunity to present his exhibition in Ukraine and color mural. We were able to take an exclusive interview from the mysterious master who accurately hides even his true name from the world.
Close
Outlook facebook page