Monday, April 8, 2013

Louise Bourgeois

In class, we took a look at Cumul I (1969),by Louise Bourgeois. It is simple and has refined lines, not making itself anything out of the ordinary for a normal viewer, except for the fact that what exactly the sculpture is cannot be defined easily. Each person is left up to their own devices to see what they can in the work. 

Additionally in class, the "organic physicality of personal torment" in the work was discussed. This concept of expressing emotional or private affairs physically and the tension that wavers between physical and emotional pain makes sense to me in relation to Bourgeois's works. In Cumul 1, despite the subject being difficult to define, there is an obvious tension that is held within the sculpture.

After reading A short biography on Bourgeois, however, ( the work made even more sense. In the PBS biography, it says that Bourgeois was quoted as saying,  “My childhood has never lost its magic, it has never lost its mystery, and it has never lost its drama.” and as a result, many of bourgeois works involve elements of both inspirations and traumas from back in her childhood. Further, this reminded me of Sigmund Freud's theories on te Psychosexual Development of childhood. He theorized that there are different stages of sexuality that effect their childhood, and everything that they experience within these stages effects their life afterwards as well. The sexual nature of Bourgeois's art could most definitely have a relationship to Freud's theory. (See the theory in more detail here : )

Further supporting this theory is this article ( on the Cumul 1 specifically. It examines how Bourgeois said that she was inspired by clouds and the depth she could convey by sculpting. However it goes further as to bring up the element of sex which Bourgeois somewhat discreetly incorporates into her works. Back to the original question if interpretation, the sexual nature of Bourgeois's works would be interesting to look further into. It is something that many may see, but deny or not know what to do with, which creates an interesting juxtapositon; again between the physical and the mind. 

No comments:

Post a Comment