Thursday, January 17, 2008

Magic Realism: ideas and debates

[Ladies of the Lake - Rob Gonsalves]

Looking around these days, I've found a very interesting page about Magic Realism. It's The Magical Realism Page, organized by Evelyn C. Leeper. There are tons of ideas and comments of what's Magic Realism, what's the difference between MR and Fantasy, vision on MR works. It's definitely a good site to check.

Wednesday, January 9, 2008

Rob Gonsalves

[Still Waters - Rob Gonsalves]

Reader Oyvind has suggested some artwork in the previous message that reminded me of the art of Rob Gonsalves.

Rob Gonsalves (1959-) is one prolific artist from Toronto, Canada, with a large gallery of paintings and drawings that unite Magic Realism and a bit of Surrealism. During his childhood, Gonsalves was interested in drawing and learned perspective techniques, while starting to painting when he was about twelve years old. When Gonsalves was introduced to Dali, Tanguy, Magritte and Escher, he started painting his surrealist and "magic realist" images. After a great critique response in the 1990s, Rob Gonsalves has dedicated himself to painting full time.

I have found three nice galleries of his works on the web, which also sell them. Here they are:

Rob Gonsalves (official)
Progressive Art

Monday, January 7, 2008

Suggest a reading

For quite some days, I've been searching the internet for sites (blogs or not) that share the same focus that The Inner Breath has. It's quite hard, though. Apart from the sites linked on the right panel, I couldn't find anything relevant. A lot of blogs on art news (as to 'new exhibits') but nothing regarding esthetics, consciousness and art. So, if you know a good site, share it here! Let's build a nice network!

You're all invited to share a reading, be it a blog, a full site, a book, an article, anything. :)

Sunday, January 6, 2008

The Thin Ice: the two sides of water symbolism

[Azure Fern - mArta Bevacqua]

For "The Thin Ice" (The Wall movie), Ulrick wrote "What he thought to be a warm, nurturing ocean turned out to be cold and sterile; the loving mother and the embracing life have become frozen and unyielding. The "sea may look warm" but it is, in all actuality, a layer of thin ice covering a frigid, aqueous landscape."

The thin ice that hides a "frigid, aqueous landscape" is a recurring image to the modern personality stereotypes. We all have some sadness hidden, still hurting, but we've still got our daily things to do, there's still rent to pay. Sometimes we think that one is quite happy for one's achievements, but there always is something hidden...

A Very Old Man with Enormous Wings

A Very Old Man with Enormous Wings is a literary tale by Gabriel García Marquéz. The title sums it up. It's a tale about an winged old man that arrives in a town.

William Morris wrote about it in the Motley Vision, in the second part of his Magic Realism analysis.

Wednesday, January 2, 2008

Magic Realism

So, what the hell is Magic Realism?

Magic Realism is an artistic movement in which supernatural events occur in reality. The main characteristic is that the event itself is not seen as magic in this setting (the characters don't see it as magic), it's just "another event".

The term was coined by art critic Franz Roh to describe imagery of an altered reality, and it was also used by Arturo Uslar-Pietri to describe the literary works of Latin American writers, like Gabriel García Marquéz and José Saramago.

Much of the imagery described as Magic Realism is quite famous, like the works of Salvador Dalí, Rob Gonsalves and René Magritte. Tim Burton (movie director and designer) touches Magic Realism in some of his productions, being Big Fish the most proeminent example.

Why should it matter?

It should matter because Magic Realism usually helps us understand how someone sees (evaluates) something. Much of what we hear about turn into an exagerated stereotype, which leads us to (unfulfilling) expectations about something. Watching Big Fish is a great way to understand how something that we don't believe can be real, taking the "too much" out off it.

Kevin J. Maroney brought up an interesting answer by García Marquéz: that there's no magic in One Hundred Years of Solitude". Maroney also states that "Gabo uses magical imagery to help us rediscover the real world".

I've been editing and publishing a lens on Magic Realism on Squidoo.