The Missing Wit(h)ness: Monroe, Fascinance and the Unguarded Intimacy of Being Dead
The most intimate aspects of the human subject are unconscious. This symposium examines the ways in which this material becomes the basis for contemporary art, critical writing and the dynamics of the consulting room. The speakers will provide a number of perspectives on the relationship between gender, the unconscious and intimacy. As well as first hand accounts from contemporary artists there will be a new reading of Marlene Dumas’ intimate art practice. The psychoanalytic process of ‘patient presentation’ will be examined, as well as how the process of being in analysis becomes inadvertently manifest when artists exhibit their work in the Freud Museum.
This symposium is hosted in collaboration with the Central Saint Martins School of Art and Design research project Intimacy Unguarded, which examines the personal as material in contemporary art and writing.
Sadie Murdoch - Your Eyes are My Hands
In ‘Your Eyes are My Hands’, Sadie Murdoch will discuss her solo exhibition SSS-MM, at the Museum Haus Konstruktiv in Zürich, curated by Sabine Schaschl, and her forthcoming publication, Omnipulsepunslide, a project with Artphilein Editions.
‘Your Eyes are My Hands’, a sentence from Omnipulsepunslide, refers to the artist’s approach to image-making.Through re- imagining and re-staging she re-routs and resists a gaze which positions the female subject as image and object. The rebellious female body, self-representation and self-fashioning are explored through archival material which is submitted to processes of elision and re-assembly, to generate new symbolic economies. Murdoch’s re-interpretation of images, objects and texts by women involved in the New York and Zürich Dada movement constitutes an intimate practice of ‘inhabiting’ the archive.
Sadie Murdoch is an artist living and working in London. She considers the way in which photographic archives can be interpreted through re-staging and re-making, and proposes that the codes and conventions of ‘Modernism’ and ‘modernity’ emerge from the repression of subversive counter-narratives, of gender, power and desire.
Sadie received her MA in Painting from Chelsea College of Art and Design in 1990 and her PhD from Leeds Metropolitan University in 1999 and was a participant in the Whitney Museum of American Art Independent Study Program in New York from 2003-2004. She is currently represented by the Roberto Polo Gallery in Brussels, and has had solo exhibitions at The Henry Moore Institute, Leeds, The Agency Gallery, London and the Apartment Gallery in Athens, Greece. She was included in Ballet Mécanique, Timothy Taylor Gallery, London, Spectral Metropole, Vžigalica Gallery, City Museum of Ljubljana, Ljubljana, Slovenia (2012) and Modern Shorts, New Museum, New York. Sadie is presently a Lecturer on the MFA Fine Art course, Goldsmiths College, University of London.
Griselda Pollock - The Missing Wit(h)ness: Monroe, Fascinance and the Unguarded Intimacy of Being Dead
Since Anthony Summers first published the post-post-mortem photograph of Marilyn Monroe in his Goddess: The Secret Lives of Marilyn Monroe, (1985) as part of the tendency to challenge her death as suicide, several painters have taken up this derelict photograph, including Margaret Harrison and latterly Marlene Dumas. We know from Barthes the intimacy between the photograph of the lost love object and death; yet in his own case he refused to reproduce the counter-image of his dead mother, an image of her as a child before his life had begun. Warhol, of course, used a ’still’ from 1953 to make his memorial icon in his grief for a fellow white working class victim of modern America. In this paper Griselda Pollock will explore the violence of the unguarded intimacy of the publication and feminist re-working of this stolen image of a woman in death in relation to the forensic notion of the silent witness and a feminist aesthetic-ethic of wit(t)messing.
Art historian and cultural analyst, Griselda Pollock is a Professor of Social and Critical Histories of Art and Director of the Centre for Cultural Analysis, Theory & History (CentreCATH) at the University of Leeds, England. Her many books and articles address feminist challenges to modernist art history, her current interests focus on the image and time, on trauma and aesthetic transformation, and feminist interventions in psychoanalytical aesthetics as well as cultural memory and the Holocaust. Her recent publications include After-images/After-Effects: Trauma and Aesthetic Transformation in the Virtual Feminist Museum (Manchester University Press 2013) and Art in the Time-Space of Memory and Migration: Sigmund Freud, Anna Freud and Bracha Ettinger in the Freud Museum (WILD PANSY PRESS with the Freud Museum, 2013) http://www.wildpansypress.com She is editor of Visual Politics and Psychoanalysis: Art & the Image in Post-Traumatic Cultures (I B Tauris 2013) and with Max Silverman, co-editor of Concentrationary Memories: Totalitarian Terror and Popular Culture (2013) and Concentrationary Imaginaries: Tracing Totalitarian Violence in Popular Culture (2015). She has just completed a twenty-year project: The Nameless Artist: Charlotte Salomon’s Life? or Theatre? for Yale University Press and is writing Is Feminism a Bad Memory? for Verso, and editing with Anna Johnson Bracha Ettinger: The Matrixial Reader for Palgrave MacMillan. Her book on Marilyn Monroe’s Mov(i)es will appear in 2017..