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Corpus Delicti Author(s): Rosalind Krauss Source: October, Vol. 33 (Summer, 1985), pp.

31-72 Published by: The MIT Press Stable URL: . Accessed: 05/05/2011 18:39
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Corpus Delicti*

to his work The smoker puts thelast touch heseeks between and the himself landscape unity - Andre Breton' A prominentsurrealistpainter, writingin 1933, imagines the following scene: A man is staring dreamily at a luminous point, thinkingit a star, only rudely to awaken when he realizes it is merely the tip of a burning cigarette. This man is then told that the cigaretteend is in factthe only visible point of an immense "psycho-atmospheric-anamorphic object," knowledge, our writer cause that banal point of burning ash to "recover assures us, that will instantly all its irrational glamour, and its most incontestable and dizzying powers of seduction." These objects--psycho, atmospheric,and anamorphic--we have already been told, are complex reconstructions, made in the dark, of an originalobject, chosen in the dark fromamong many others. The reconstruction, allowed to drop (still in the dark) froma ninety-foot height, to render it unrecognizable even ifable to be seen, is then photographed. Still withoutbeing looked at, this photographis then sunk into a molten cube of metal which hardens around it. This reproduced shadow of an unseen shadow, in the vise of its now inertcase, our writerwill subsequently referto as informe, unformed. Our writer,who can only be Salvador Dali, goes on to imagine the story he will tell his now-rapt listener, about the historyof this particular object, whose burning tip only can be seen. This history,of extremecomplexity,will persuade the listenerbeyond a shadow of a doubt that among other elements buried in the object are "two authenticskulls- those of Richard Wagner and of Ludwig II of Bavaria. And," Dali adds, "it will be demonstratedthat it is these two skulls, softenedup by a special process, that the cigaretteis smoking."The

A version of this essay will appear in Rosalind Krauss and Jane Livingston, L'Amourfou: * Surrealism and Photography, New York, Abbeville Press, 1985. 1. "Le fumeur met la derniere main a son travail/ II cherche l'unite de lui-meme avec le paysage," from"Le soleil en laisse," Clairede Terre, Paris, Gallimard, 1966.

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glamour of rotand decay going up in smoke, is as we shall see, the veryessence of the informe. Dali closes his textwiththe assertion,"The tip of thiscigarettecannot but burn with a brilliance more lyricalin human eyes than the airy twinkleof the clearest and most distant star."2 Ten years earlier Man Ray had made the following image: a strangeconstructionrises fromthe bottomedge of a photograph,pyramidingtowards the top of its frame. The tip of the pyramid is a cigarette,its ash just kissingthe edge of the sheet, its otherend clenched in the teethof a barely-seenmouth at human base. For we are able to read as the supthe apex of thisconstruction's a rotated 180 degrees, its humanness hardly face for the cigarette port mass of fallinghair thatfillsthe bottomhalf the from this position, recognizable of the frame, a swirling,formlessfield. With the dispassionate economy of only two moves- rotationand closeMade just before 1923, produces the image of the informe. up- Head, New York, the "SurrealistManifesto"firedthe startingshots of Andre Breton'srevolution May Ray's image could (but not beforethe movement's"'poquedessommeils"),3
de au service Le Surrialisme SalvadorDali, "Objetspsycho-atmospheriques-anamorphiques," 2. No. 5 (May 1933), 45-48. la revolution, to the years 1922 and 1923 as the group used to refer is often dessommeils" The "ipoque 3. and ofdreams, automatic therecording with aroundAndreBreton writing, beganto experiment inducedtrances. hypnotically


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Far left: Man Ray. Head, New York. 1923. Man 1930. Left: Ray.Anatomy. Brassai. Untitled.1933.

au service that de la revolution nonethelesshave occupied the page in Le Surrialisme carried Dali's text, hardly unusual for the photographerwhose work was instantlyto be fullyintegratedinto the full range of surrealistliteraryspaces. From 1924 Man Ray was treatedas a kind of staff photographerforLa Revolusix images to its first issue. Afterturningover to his tion surrialiste, contributing assistantJacques-Andr6 Boiffardthe illustrationof Breton's Nadja, Man Ray to make photographsthat went on to contribute images to Breton'sL'Amourfou, his text on the "Automatismof would be chosen by Tristan Tzara to electrify Taste," or to set up shots of phantoms to illustrate a 1934 Dali essay on "AerodynamicApparitions." is notjust an isolated case in Man Ray's work,a lucky But Head, New York coincidence that Dali could have found and used but, as chance would have it, did not. Its strategiesare repeated within the scope of Man Ray's photothe map of what graphic output, defamiliarizingthe human body, redrafting is another such we would have thoughtthe most familiarof terrains.Anatomy image, with similar, unsettlingeffects.Once again human fleshpyramids to the top of the page, but here there is no invertedhead, no reassuring eyes

by simple consequent disorienproduced. had a rotation and as Man seen. For the surrealistmetaphor-beauty imaged as the strangeyokingoftheumbrellaand the sewingmachine. because it has fallen into the condition of the animal. this process of seeing as if. looking steeply up Anatomy formto catch.its achievement throughthe syntaxof the camera's hold on its object. then. of Lautreamont's Maldoror."in Minotaure. a button is pushed and the fall is the rest. its radical foreshortening occurs human-as-if-beast of the througha specificallyspatial device: perience one that suggeststhe dizziness to which Dali refers.34 OCTOBER and nose. which forcesthe head out of sight behind the upper torso and shoulders. the exploration of the thoughtof poetic bestiary man-as-animal had become a commonplace of surrealism. the luminous torso and upper arm. 41. the nude body revealed as beast. or the lens.But thatwould be to ignore the precise conduct of this as if. our eyes sliding along the muscularityof a distended neck rendered nonethelessweirdlygelatinous by the image's lightingand contour. combine to image the face of an unknown animal: the protuberant breasts suggesting the horny tuftsof the forehead. however that propels the image into the realm of the vertiginous. Maurice 4. a device thatthe camera makes simple: turn the body. And I have. makes it mechanical. Yet it is here that one feelsa tinyrupturebeginningto appear withinthe calm theoreticalsurface of surrealistpractice. just this point where the head should be. 1 (February 1933). "Varietis du corps humain.the breasts seen as if horns. The camera automates this process.No eyes and nose. No.I might seem merely to be saying that the photographersoperatingwithinthe circuitof surrealismadopted just thatpredilection for metaphor of an extravagant and unexpectedlyirrationalkind that was so dear to the surrealist poets and so tirelesslydescribed in the various tracts since the enthusiasticdiscoveryof the issued by the movement. the arm as if ear.or is it to imagine?. its angling from and cropping. In describing.and the angle of vision. so that this particular exbelow. thatproduces thisimage." Minotaure. For the lighting. doubling as face and ear. one that is a demonstrationof falling. Ray it in tation of the body.4 is the camera at the recumbent strategy chosen. In Anatomy we stare at the underside of a violentlyup-ended chin.which plunges the hips and thighs of the figureinto shadowed obscurity. There is a device. rotate the human figureinto the figureof fall. The body cannot be seen as human. extraordinary image by Brassai that was There the chosen to open the essay "Variiitsdu the belly and head of a frog. or to fabricate. This is how Boiffard his performed poignant nude for it in how one finds or the Documents. its inversion of the body. producing the apparition on this page of somethingpuffily reptilian. which could be The surrealistphotographerswere masters of the informe. .

Jacques-Andri .Delicti Corpus 35 1930. Boiffard. Untitled.

See Dawn Ades. and CliffordBrowder. Gravitatingaround Georges Bataille and his magazine Documents. biter Geneva. Oxford UniversityPress. 7.8 The excommunication of Masson and Desnos which was proclaimed in the SecondManifesto merely articulated the break that these two of Surrealism had already had withBreton. struggle among during the last half of the 1920s and into the early '30s. accounts that have almost universallybeen given fromthe point of view of surrealism'sleader. Breton. 228 ff.6 Andr' Masson had been so dismissed. stillthoughtof themselvesas in the same game. The aleatory. that lies beneath it? informe Inside the domain of the photographicimage. Andre 5. the dictum of "objective chance" had been laid down and repeated by Andre Breton. Droz. pp. Reviewed. Among many others they were publicly expelled in the "Second Manifeste du that cigaretteash that had signaled the immense constructionof the psycho-anamorphicobject.36 OCTOBER an as ifspecifically produced by chance. 1969. Jacques-Andre ofthe Centrale. with the poetics of the thatwe glimpse movement. Bataille was carefulto characterizehimselfas surrealism's"old enemy fromwithin. and Robert Desnos. expectantpoet who waits forhis dreams. figures. more fundamental. that Two of the standard works on Breton are so subtitled: Anna Balakian. not to Breton. Manifestoes ofSurrealism. his doodles. pp. his fantasies to bringhim the outlandishsimilesofhis unconscious desires. to their defection to the camp of dissatisfiedor "dissident surrealists"who.7 But they were eventually recalled to the center to function once more as the unquestioned players in the surrealistdrama. ofSurrealism.the happenstance.a kind of oblivion."5 Thus anythingthat Andre Breton banished fromthe center of the movement.Arts Council of Great Britain. thoughno longer playingon Breton'steam. translated in Andre Surr alisme. 1971. The cover photomontage for this number pictures the surrealistsassembled there. 1978. had departed to thismarginal posionce the secretary Boiffard. the rift in question enacts a that went on the surrealists outside.descending on the passive.Magus ArNew York."And it is to Bataille. but not one who contestedthe movementas such." La Revolution Surrialiste. ofSurrealism. the man who has been called its "arbiter"or its "magus. a break thathad led among many others. Dada and Surrealism 8. ifever so small. . So that this photographicmechanization of the production of the image is indeed a break. giving its address as 15. these renegades associated themselveswith the enemy leader. London. 12 (December 1929). Breton. we mightbe promptedto ask. It comes automatically. announced the opening of Le Bureau Central Surrialiste number of La Revolution The first 6. and inert. tion not to reappear in any historyof the movement until the late 1970s. This is a strugglethat has been told only glancingly in the historical accounts of the movement."was expelled into a darkness thatbecame. Ann Arbor. is thislittlerift here not the tip of somethinglarger. 1-17. The University of Michigan Press. rue de Grenelle. And. 1967. de Recherches Surrealistes. symbolicallycalled at the outset surrealism's"Centrale. AndriBreton. in the eyes of history.

. cidentis discussed Man Ray. Further. GeorgesBataille. but .resurfacedin 1933 in the very ratherstructure the basic mechanismsof thought a magazine that operated as a surrealistvehicle.The inDocuments. was also Bataille's concept. Documents only ran forthe two years 1929 and 1930.'" in Ades."minotaure. 240.Delicti Corpus 37 with the particular. p. Minotaur.9 Short-lived. who had lefttheCentrale forthisstrangeperiphery." blindly wandering the labyrinthinto which he has fallen. 7 (December1929). forcing reproduced in Documents to resort to presenting the painting by means of a diagram. that is. 9. Bataille's name forMinotaure. disoriented. 1934. through. But Bataille's impact on surrealist thinking. dizzy. anamorphic spin. No. foras we shall see this man/beast title."Le 'Jeulugubre. painters. Breton undoubtedly feared the lure of Bataille on the young poets. the mechanics of fall.and photographers to be He thus prevented Dali from allowing the painting Le Jeu lugubre Bataille to accompany Bataille's analysis of it. throughan axial rotation fromvertical to horizontal.on the production of images that do not Dali owed the word informe to implya mechanism forits was Bataille who developed the concept of bassesse achievement.297-302.

"Poupee. Hans Bellmer.38 OCTOBER having lost his seat of reason . cat.a book excoriatedby graphic and photographicformBataille's Histoire Breton as obscene." But Minotaure's to disallow be might tempted the movement'sstamp. "Primitivism" in20thCentury Art. Jacques-Andr? Boiffard. Bellmerprovided etchings publication pseudonym thatcan be identified as relating to specific scenesfrom Bataille'snovel(Simone's photographs nakedon a bicycle. Untitled.his head . see Denis Hollier. .my"Alberto Paris. Opposite page: Untitled. Jacques-Andri Untitled. Variationssur le montage no.) the mid-1940s. 523-524. 10. 1930. no. 1946.1983." 1974. Hans Bellmer. If I am stressing thisconvergence(if only by proxy)of Bataille and Breton this is because we are not used to reading surrealist in the pages of Minotaure. Bataille'sHistoire de l'oeilwas publishedin 1928 under the fora subsequent in 1940. La Prise Giacometti. as shesitsin a plateofmilk.See as well. the gridof Bataille's thoughtand on those verygroundswe productionthrough such images a status as "surreal.Simoneriding ofthenarrator seduction first etc. See Hans Bellmer.The Museum of ModernArt. ofBataille. 109-133. Boiffard.pp." and thefigure ofthelabyrinth. 129. Fora discussion dela Concorde. 6 (Winter1935).this creatureis another avatar of the 10 informe. d'une mineure 11.pp. 30-31. about the proprietyof this association for the man who illustratedin both de l'oeil. Filipacchi.1984. The Lord Auch. have been dated from Paris. articul&e. securingmembershipfor to them conveyed imprimatur for example.Gallimard. Photographe.p. 148. pp." Minotaure. New York. theMinotaur. 1930. beyond any doubt that mightbe raised Hans Bellmer's Poup&es.

" ."Informe. 382.providing thereby spittle. Documents. lumine the procedures of a whole list of photographers. does not propose a higher.12 Allergic to the notion of definitions. as thoughit were a spider or an earthwormcrushed underfoot. is the meaning of informe? is the categorythatwould allow all categoriesto be unFor Bataille informe or likens it to crachat thought. His entryforit in the "Dictionary"in Documents simile that a in its physical formlessness.Delicti Corpus 39 Bataille's term. and will possiblyilInforme. No. rather he posits for it a job: to undo formal not give informe imagine meaning as gone shapeless. p. What. then. noxious forthisterm the noxious.has been pronounced by Dali. Parry.dividing up a phrase that points calls "mathematical what Bataille it frock-coats. This notion of informe 12. GeorgesBataille. limitingit by cepts organize reality. and going on to Ubac.beginning with Man Ray. conceptual implicationsof informe: would figureforth removal of all those boundaries the one to think to allow is meant by whichconof into little it packages sense. or Dora Maar. deny thateach thinghas its"proper"form. continuing to Boiffardand Brassai. Bataille does a meaning. Tabard. however.more transcendentmeaning. 7 (December1929)." giving both to the abstractnessof concepts and to the prissinesswith which they are meant to constrain.

de l'Image obsidante writeits perversely spectacular story. throughdeliquescence. There. . heralds the active. 1 [1933]) is titled.iii!i~ii~iiii!!iii -iiiiiaiiiiiiiiiiiii iiiii!iiiiiii !iiiii ii ::?r-:Ji-:iiiiiiiiiii iiii iiiiiiiiisiiiii iiii~iiiiiiiiiiiiiiiii!ii througha dialectical movement of thought. The prologue of Dali's "Interpretation Paranodiaque-critique "New GeneralConsiderations on the No.'3In much the same way Dali's paranoidcritical method was also intended as a device. operates in Bataille's novel Histoirede loeil. He described his strategyfor simulatingdelirium as a machine for generatingan active.The boundaries of terms are not imagined by Bataille as transcended. p. 772. a machine that would leave nothing to chance but the working out of detail. putrifaction. de l'oeil. Roland Barthes. 195-6 (1963). but merely as transgressedor broken. 'L'Angelus'de Millet"(Minotaure. The idea that one could constructa machine to make somethinghappen."Critique. by an idea of it as a giverof tasks. as Roland Barthes has demonstrated.Bataille devises a combinatorymechanism for associating two stringsof images. "La metaphore 13. producing formlessness decay. aggressive tenor of his the other generatedby associations withthe shape ofthe eye (eye/egg/testicles). by associations with its status as a container of fluid (tears/yolk/semen). No. aggressive assault 14 on reality. such as Or can formlessness the turningof a camera or a body 180 degrees? Bataille's substitutionof the idea of a dictionaryas a giverof meanings.separating it fromthat expectantlypassive attitudeof Breton's availabilityto chance. be produced as well by mechanical means.

I." Hans Bellmer." and "Mouth. p. Thispage. 6 (November 1929)."Documents. set an unframed mirrorat a perpendicular angle. Bataille. 1971. 1935. Untitled. and Bataille. jointure boule. Jacques-Andrd 1929." Documents. such that the symmetrical halves of the visible ensemble diminish or enlarge according to a slow and regular evolution. 5 (1930). This operation. 15. "The Big Toe. and constantlymaintaining the 90 degree angle.Jacques-Andre Boiffard. . Centre Nationale d'Art Contemporain. Two of the textswhich explore this rotationinto baseness. p. Bofard. No.. Cnacarchives. throughthis entrance of the mirrorand its movement.Far the one most closely linked to the photographicpracticewe have been discussing. Whether. horizontal axis. progressivelyrotate it." Bellmer. "Bouche.Bataille contraststhe mouth/eye Mechanism of the Paranoid Phenomenon fromthe Surrealist Point of View." The image from the Dali/Bufiuel film Un Chienandaluof a razor slicing throughthe open eye of a woman enacts this sense of aggression. No. 297-302. it is a question of the whipcord that spins the top or the expressive reflexof the organism. II." were illustratedwith photographsby Boiffard. "Notes sur la necessary ' Paris. "Le Gros orteil. productive of bassesse. uprightposture fromthat of the beasts-onto the opposing. Left:Raoul Ubac. we grasp the same law: opposition is for things to exist and for a third reality to come into being. 27. 1929. Mouth. pp.. Bellmer also devises a "machine" forassaulting the familiarterrainof the body: "Onto the photograph of a nude. 299.15 In the essay "Mouth" where the issue of rotationis axis of the human face withthe most explicit. Anotherof these mechanisms or devices was the rotationof the very axis a station that defineshim by separating his "proper"to man-his verticality. Irrational Image.

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the head cropped just above her mouth fromwhich depends a long. axial rotation was not the device to which he resorted. Photographic Surrealism. The latter. mouth and anus are conflated. turns out to organic but at first be a piece of liver. a functionof the animal's horizontality. indeterminateobject which. Les Mysteres de la chambre noire. 8. for example. Flammarion. The former. Boiffard'sphotograph for this essay is a woman's open mouth. Sleeping Nude.which ripples and contortsthe fieldof the photo. grouping togethervarious shots of the same nude. La Nibuleuse was achieved the emulsion on the of a woman with the by attacking negative image standing heat of a small burner.16 But the titleof thiswork supposes the disintegration ratherthan the creation of form.and his possession of speech. See Eduard Jaguer. Instead. The New Gallery of Contemporary Art. . but animal. This is how it is characterized. 1939. wet with saliva.CorpusDelicti 43 mouth/anusaxis of the four-leggedanimal.understands the mouth as the leading element of the systemof catching.killing. submittingthe image of the body to assaults of a chemical and optical kind. the resultantpositive becoming a new element to be recombined.and ingestingprey. is oftenrelated in the scholarlyand criticalliteratureto automatism: the creation of suggestiveimagerythroughthe operations of chance. by Nancy Hall-Duncan. definesthe mouth in termsof man's expressive powers. A fewyears later Raoul Ubac would. 1979. p. and then to be both rephotographedand resolarized. that at its greatest moments of pleasure or pain. throughmontage. its tongue an amorphous blur. in effect. 1982. link brfilageto techniques of the immediate past so much as he sees in it an avatar of the informel pictorial preoccupations of the 1940s. the human mouth's expression is not spiritual. forwhich the anus is the terminalpoint. Paris. recreate this image when he pictured a woman's head and neck. But to insist. he oftenexplored the technical infrastructure of the photographicprocess. Ubac's optical assaults on the body took place over a long series of ambitious. p. these images are the results of successive attacks of solarization. Ubac's participationin the creation of a photographicformlessness linked to the depiction of the human body was as persistentand as concentratedas or Man Ray's ever was.linked to man's verticality. upon inspection. withotherfragments. complex photomontageswhich he workedout in the late 1930s. In a first stage a montage would be produced. Raoul Ubac. Solarization. 118. This image would then be rephotographedand solarized. Under the generic titleLe Combat des Penthisilies. The poster-manifesto vospoemes/Affichez vos images Affichez (1935) was the occasion forthis work. is to reorganize the orientationof the human structureand conceptuallyto rotatethe axis of loftiness onto the axis of material existence. The resultantmelting.and the procedure whose trace suggeststhe workingsof fireis a device for producing this formlessness.beyond this simple polarity. Cleveland. which bares the light-sensitive 16. however. Eduard Jaguer does not. But except forhis Sleeping Boiffard's Nude. With this act of Bataille's.

opens the darkestareas of the positive image . ... Reversing and exaggeratingthe light/dark relationshipsat thispreof the envelope of form.....ofbodies decapitated of the of bodies eaten shadow. Ubac pushes his proceduretowardsthe representation of a violentdeliquescence of matteras lightoperates on the boundaries ofa body thatin turngives way to this depicted invasion of space. .. We the usual formulae for might say..Battleof theAmazons.44 OCTOBER paper of an eventual positive printto a moment'sreexposureduring the printing process.::.usually those very shadows thatdefinethe edges of solid objects. Raoul Ubac.solarization is a process that can obcise registration In the most extremeof this work viously be put to the service of the informe.iiiiiiii:~ oe. 41ii~ ~ci i-i-i"i~i?iii~i-:i'iiiliI -Ml(i..-:: B3i ipolli ~"iX. following explaining the surrealistimage.La what will later read as a kind of optical corrosion. one of theways we can generalize thewhole of what we have been seeing so far is that a varietyof photographicmethods have been exploited to produce an image of the invasion of space: ofbodies dizzily yieldingto the force of gravity. by projection away by eitherheat or light.ofbodies in the gripof a distorting perspective.. ~ Raoul Ubac.. solarization most frequently reads as the optical reorganizationof the contours of objects. 1939. A mode of producing a simultaneous positive/negative. Indeed. Raoul Ubac.others.So thatwe are temptedto say thatifthereis a psychologicalcondition onto which these images open. - Roger Caillois opens the article"Mimitisme et Psychasth6nie Legendaire" his curious contributionto a 1935 issue of Minotaure. .dream. or Ubac's Ophelia. but ratherbodies assaulted from without.and transformed. Prends garde:ajouer au on le devient.clearly do not. Man Ray's ages would support that reading. or his ironicallytitledLe Primat de la matiere surla pensie.ecstasy. They do not seem to depict bodies seized fromwithin.Battleof theAmazons.Delicti Corpus 45 that this consumptionofmatterby a kind of spatial etheris a representation of the overturningof realityby those psychic states so courted by the poets and paintersof the movement: reverie.with the above cau- ~s~~~N 'li~ &-? 4r--c -i .Dali's Le Phenomene work forFacile. fantome. But while some of these imde 1'extase. it may not be found in the usual catalogue of surrealistexperiences. 1939.

During the opening years ofMinotaure. 1931. 23-26."Mimitisme Minotaure. 18. Ligendaire." to establisha distinct.5.'8 erly Because of the ubiquity of the image of the praying mantis withinboth poetic and pictorialsurrealism. pp. 7 (June1935). 17 Caillois published two long essays. Ophelia." Minotaure. the second on the biological phenomenon of mimicry. ph6nom'nede l'extase.Le Primat above: Opposite sur la pensee. Le Thispage: Salvador .1933."La Mante religieuse. a warning that the fate of playing at chimeras may be that of becoming one.or propthus eradicatingthe boundaries thatare thought human nature. de la mati'ere below: Raoul Ubac. Opposite 1938.These early foraysinto a kind of socio-biologyof consciousness were writtenout of the beliefthat insectsand humans partake of "the same nature. 5 (May 1934). RogerCaillois.46 OCTOBER tion. Dali. Man Ray. Caillois." no. et Psychasthinie No. the firston the praying mantis.Caillois's discussion of the gripof thisinsecton 17.

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though he did not publish it until 1949.LV (December . 19. 1-7. mechanical imitation of life. tion. It appears as well in anotherguise in one of the rare instancesof Hans Bellmer's sculptural production. Lacan. the automaton. Caillois's treatmentof mimicryhas a rather more specificpertinence. and. And it is just this aspect that connects his discussion of the mantis with his subsequent exploration of mimicry. Norton. a principle he firstpresented publicly in 1936. that the mantis's link to the fantasm of human sexuality is to be found. casmade it the perfectsymbol of the phallic mother. of the replicationof a conscious subject by his pictured duplicate. walk." Ecrits. regain balance. Alan Sheridan." Caillois and of voluntaryacwrites. the nonsentient. we mightalready realize that in some kind of general way this issue of mimicryopens onto surrealistphotography'spersistentexploration of the double as a structuralprinciple: simultaneouslyformaland thematic. 93-100. the mantis can simulate picture. "La Mante religieuse. 600-615. in English as Jacques Lacan. 20. on the formationof the human the concept of the "mirrorstage" and its effect subject. 26.and thus to mime life. forexamJacques developing choanalytic in his this his debt to to continued text. 1973).19The female mantis's sexual practices. But in relationto the images we have been discussing. "Le stade du miroircomme formateurde la fonctiondu Je.48 OCTOBER human imagination has entered the literatureon the thematicsof the movement. in the paintings of Masson and Dali. Seuil. In this guise the mantis swarms over surrealistwork of the 1930s. workingout of particularly express ple. that dead."20 resonance withinthe psyCaillois's essay on mimicryhad extraordinary in in Paris the circles 1930s."thatin the absence of all centersof representation a cocoon.Paris.petrifying. mantis comes most stunningly it can continue to function. 96 in the French edition and p. what is most astonishing.trans. 3 in the English. pp.pp.for the to resemble a machine when. "The Mirror Stage as Formative of the Function of the I. pp. in the collages of Ernst.fascinating. also described by Caillois. namely. and its explicit attentionto the operations of doubling. lay eggs. Jacques Lacan. Lacan cites Caillois's importance. or reason assimilate. of androidlikeautomation. 21. Caillois. p.21 With this connection. New York. "The Praying Mantis in Surrealist Art. cadaverous I am expressingin thisindirectmanner what language can scarcely certain species its consumption of its mate afteror even during the act of copulation.and its voracity. build its have it can coitus. even decapitated. where his Machine Gunneress in a State of Grace(1937) depicts the insect in that aspect. in the sculpturesof Giacometti."p. See William the face of danger can fall into a fake. 1966.withtheirdepictionof a curious invasion of the body by space." Ecrits. death. trating. In factit is Caillois's conclusion that it is in this opening onto the imaginative possibilityof the robot. "Which is to say."ArtBulletin.

Caillois attests. The specificvisuality of mimicry can be shown. But the adaptation hypothesisfounderson two counts.Delicti Corpus 49 Most of the scientific explanations foranimal mimicryrelate it to adaptive behavior. Lest it seem too bizarre to apply psychologicalconceptsto this occurrence. .it is argued.appearing in the review that bore as its titleone of Bataille's favoritefigures." October. as though yieldingto a temptationexercised on it by the vast outsideness of space itself. Caillois then hypothesizes that this phenomenon is in fact a kind of insectoid psychosis-the psychastheniaof his titlereferring to PierreJanet's psychiatricnotion of a in the level of catastrophicdrop psychicenergy.the individual breaks the boundary of his skin and occupies the other side of his senses. First. He tries to look at himself fromany point whateverof space.sympatheticmagic. the patterning of its environment. Mimicry seems to be a functionof the visual experience of as when. or what one writerhas called a kind of "subjective detumescence. camouflagebehavior in certainspecies is the insect itself.and the concerns that we have been tracingunder the conditioninforme. is largelyirrelevantto animal functionsexclusivelyin the register hunting. The insecttakes on the coloration. is the loss of thispossession. it ends by replacing them. For what could be more formless than this spasm of nature in which boundaries are indeed broken and distinctions truly blurred? Likening the responses of schizophrenic subjects to the phenomenon of animal mimicry. .a boundary withinwhich it is contained. . as when the animal is mistakenlyeaten by its own kind or cannot be perceived by membersof its species forpurposes of mating. Denis Hollier. in which an illness is conceived of as a possession of the patient by some be more thanjust the projectionthat human observers. Caillois argues. suspended Tying mimicry to the animal's own perception of which dispossesses the victimfromhis own person.a matter of smell and of motion. because the animal thatmergeswithits settingbecomes dispossessed.the fusion of the insect with its environmentcan and oftendoes work against survival. He is 22. The body then desolidifieswithhis thoughts. Caillois writes. . .a temptationto fusion. There is an obvious connectionbetween thistext.the shape. forexample. the termsof what we could call its selfpossession. Second. derealized. . Caillois reminds his readers of the terms of primitive. "Space seems for these dispossessed souls to be a devouring force."22The life of any organism depends on the possibilityof its maintaining its own distinctness. Caillois shows.a loss of ego substance.make upon thisfield of natural pattern. He feelshimselfbecoming space. 1937. "Mimesis and Castration. 3-16. pp. 31 (Winter 1985). Mimicry. thisphenomenon which of the visual. either at night or when the ocular antennae are cut. no. in order to fool eitherits predator or its prey. one which can be combatted by drawing it offfromthe patient throughthe mimicryperformedby the shaman in a rite of repossession.withtheirquite different systemsof perception.

which possesses. indeed. Mannequin.a being-seen. If the effect the body of an organism. not like somethingbut simply like. . intersectedverticallyat the distance where an object appears. the theme of one of the very first ac la photographsever to be published by the movement: Man Ray's Retour where the nude torso of a Surrialiste raisonof the firstissue of La Revolution to the possession by space. because of this.As Caillois describes it: Space is inextricablyboth perceived and represented. in the strongest toput itself. it is this aspect of realitythat is explored by Ubac's 1938 photographof the surrealistmannequin constructedby Masson. For Caillois moves to a rather different defines the nature of this breakdown in the organism's relation to space as a structuralproblem in the fieldof representation."Mimitisme. it is dispossessed of its privilegeand.And he inventsspaces of which he is 'the convulsive possession. is simultaneouslypossessed by the that is to be found as well in Boiffard's mesh of space. 8. an effect image of the of mimicryis the inscriptionof space on woman/spider(1931). p. Miller before of Lee tych Now this inscriptionof the body by space. 1937. no longer A diagram in one of Lacan's later seminars depicts this double dihedral 23. and a determinedby the same horizontal plane as dihedron of representation before(but representedand not perceived). 1929. It is with representedspace that the drama becomes clear: forthe living being. is no longer the origin of the coordinates. of course.24 knowswhere the term. then this is. 8-9. changing at each moment in size and situation: a dihedron of two intersecting [orfigureconstructed of which is formed horizontal the action by the ground plane planes]of and the vertical plane by the man himselfwho walks and who. 24. Raoul Ubac.50 OCTOBER alike. Caillois. Jacques-Andri Boiffard. an image thatMan woman is shown as ifsubmitting in a triptimes the 1920s. mostlyrically return to several was to throughout Ray a window. carries the dihedral relation along with him. her prey in her mouth. From this point of view it is a double dihedron. Untitled. For in Ubac's termsthis mantis. Ibid. correspondsto that of vivery moment in Caillois's argument where he examines the subjectivity level in his analysis when he sion.'"'23 And.. the organism. evokes the mantis. but is one point among sense of others." pp. this operation throughwhich the seeing subject is definedas a projection. in which the caged head of the female.

. . .. A"..i--i--ii ~~~~~~i iiii.. ! eo---- !ii~iiiiiii Agl ~ pvi i-_*: .I ~ ~ ~4~i iiiiiiiiii:iiiC14I: kla i? iiii! i~i RI? :y i-i~j~iii . .::jiii iiii--i -iii ::::::::i'':'' -:-i-iiiiiiii'iiiiiiiii-iiiii-i iiii--iiiii~i:iiii 1 . .. . .. . .. ..... !i-i:il-Fi iiiiii ii -iiiiii-iiil i -11 .

is the one that Lacan constructsas the domain of the essentially visual. although with a different Using two opposing triangles. For theirnotionsdid not supportthe modernist trans. although no longer as the privileged point fromwhich realityis constructed. the dynamics of a specifically visual dimension. It is in termsof the second trianglethat Lacan plots Caillois's dihedron of representation. 91. For here.first. The FourFundamental Concepts ofPsycho-Analysis."It is along this plane that the perceivingorganism occurs. Lacan constructs. withinwhich the subject is dispossessed. Norton. Alan Sheridan.52 OCTOBER 25 set of figures. emanating fromspace at large. ."a figurein a picture forwhich it is Object image Geometral point Point oflight scr< n Picture this relationshipin which the subject ocnot viewer but viewed. where the field of the "picture"separates offfromthe geometric.For in this figure. New 25.the occupant of the apex of the triangleis not a sentientbeing but a point of light. Jacques Lacan. Significantly.however.irradiant.the usual visual pyramid of perspective projectionwith the viewer's eye stationed at the apex and the object he sees deployed along the field that makes up the triangle'sbase. Lacan findsthe termsof an irresolvableand perpetual tension.ultimatelytactile conception of perspectivalspace. effect. p. and it is here that he is able to diagram the "scopic drive. that is." to elaborate.and the base plane of the triangleis now indicated "picture. but as Caillois's "one point among others. York. 1981. The peculiar conception of the visual that Caillois depicted and Lacan was to go on to develop (most immediatelyin his theoryof the mirrorstage) both coincides with the primacy that modernistart gave to pure visualityand conflictswith the utopian conclusions that the theoristsof modernism drew fromthisidea of optical power. being able to see eitherhis viewer or his own figurein the viewer's picture. .a pyramid that locates the viewer at Caillois's "origin of the coordinates" and thereforerepresents the perceptual halfof the double dihedron.forhe is definedor inscribedas a being-seen curs only as alienated fromhimself without.

tation.1923. in whichhe is captured.with each sense liberated into the purityof its own experience. caught in a hall of mirrors. because thatimage. the visuality Lacan and Caillois were describing was a mastery fromwithout. The photograph that Ubac took to accompany Pierre Mabille's article X". memory"). Retour' la raison.imposedon the subjectwho is trappedin a cat's cradle ofrepresenlost in a labyrinth. available to than thislabyrinthine is more Nothing photography doubling. . .Delicti Corpus 53 idea of sensuous mastery. is seen fromthe vantage of another. a mirror witha Characterized as being itself thisplay of reflection. q `2 ~ Ai a: Man Ray. (the "mirror the For there camera nonetheless enacts Caillois's double dihedron.. is a fundamentalschismbetween the subject that perceives and the image that looks back at him.

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her forehead. Raoul Ubac. working togetherto reinflect For Tabard's mirroris double dihedral.the two-sidedness of its profiles. is simultaneously"seen. the figuresof the infrastructure of the photographic screen in its ideal condition of reversibility. imbedded in the of of in bodies The between the right question aspect.composed of elements like ladders. obscured as though by shadow.1929-1931 . But unlike a grid. part of her hair. It is here. shared by no other image-making a stunningdemonstrationof the disarticulation of the self by means of its mirroreddouble. perceived in a doubling reminiscentof Caillois's the crumbling of theory of mimicry.during which he used photomontage to explore the essential double-sidedness of the photographicsupport. 1938. in that briefperiod. are in fact corroded and dispersed throughthe So thatthissubjectwho sees is a subject who. like discovers an image of the informe. though transparencyof the photographicnegative. of the invasion boundaries.26 In this fundamentalcondition of reversal Tabard located the fusionof the image with its fullyintelligiblefromboth frontand back. . In the most brilliant of Tabard's photomontages these two factors are simultaneously made visible: reversibilityand mirror reversal. Portrait in a Mirror.Objects which are themselvesdouble-sided and gridlike. For what is unique to photography. Continually recombiningand repeating an extremelylimitedvocabulary of elements. space. And in this very moment of inscription. is the on which.the paired doubleness of hands and arms and breasts. the human body is not identical fromone side to the other." entered as "picture"onto the mirror'ssurface.Her eyes. constantly the naive notion of the mirror-with-a-memory. In brilliant sunlighta woman's face is seen in a mirrorwhose state of decay returnsher image to her strangelyaltered. identity and lefthand is always mediated by the fact of mirrorreversal. It could be argued that stained glass is yet another medium that is reversible.CorpusDelicti 55 "Mirrors"--published in Minotaurein 1938 as a kind of popularization of Lacan's theoriesof the mirrorstage. thereone discoversa pictureofthe sub- 26. that one locates the participation by Maurice Tabard with the concerns of the movement. in relation to a concern with the subject's mirroring. transformed.they became in Tabard's hands. it is. Tabard chose two types of objects with which he created two independent series. in being veryagency of reflection. or tennisrackets. The first. cane-backed as representations of the chairs. Though symmetrical. It was against this firstseries that Tabard then introduced the human figurethrougha doubling that would call attentionto the body's own reversibility. the information reversed leftand right. Yet the same informationis not intelligiblefromthe back of the glass as that applied to its front.enteredthe image to function negative itself.

:-----~: iii:i.:-:::::--: ::'" :i-i~i~:~-iii-i-i:-: -:::---i-: -:~-i~::::':::::: ::: :-::-:?: :i:::::::::::j:: :::::: ::_:--:.~r--: s~s_-:::::--:-:-:-:~i:s:s-~~--iBi -ia::----~~:a ~-~. i:i:i ii~iiiiiiiiiiiiiii3i:iiiii-i:-iii:i?:i.~:i:`)-~ ii-iii-i--iiiii._. :---:---::::?:_(-:.:.-:-? ?::: -I-:-i-:. Untitled...and a subject that is dispossessed withinits very being by the factof being seen. forall thatTabard's images are layered and complex. in thissense.::~~:~~~:: .-_ii-i:i. .:-:i-i:i~-i-i--:--_--::i_-:--i-i:i i-i:: ::::-iiiii::iii-..Lacan's "picture.:::~::-:__:_.:::-:::-:--:-:-::_:i:::::--::::__ii~iii-iii~i~~~~ : : :::: ::_::----:-:--_:-:_--: .:::~_:.~::_:jl:*i?.i-i?iiiiii : . .i~~:iiiiil-iiiii-iii~i ~-:::j:::-: --::i------~~-:'i-iiiiii~iii~ii ~-i-i. ness to chance. :: :::--::'-:--. ."':-:::-::::::':':::"::'::::: Cr-i:-i-~i-~-ii::::: :_ii:ii:i i!:::i'i:-"': '::i:.s~i~ :::-'-:-i-::~"i: -:::::-:~:_--~ :-i:-~--i:i~: ~i-':P-i_~-i:i-i :-:::"_:-:_----: :::::_:---::-:-_.ilii-~-i:ii:l:i:i~i::i-i ~~li:~ii:.:::~:::l::?~::?.: iii?iiiiii.?-i'iiii :i:::9:::':ii~ '?'-'i'-'''i'''' -:-: .::::.ii._--:--l?--~-i-i-i-i~:-----~i:i-:i:i-i-i i--i:i~:ir~::iii.:::::-::::: Ii-i:ii:::-:aii:ii~_i:?-~-i'"-'":':' :i:-:::::::: _:-:-:::: -::. :.?::j ::nii:--?ii-i.::iii: iiliii:iiii-ii:iiii-i:iiii~~ii-i:--~:il.~~ir ~~~a ~ ~~~ ::: ::: :-. : i:i:: -.i:::: :::: :::-:::-:: iiili~ii-l ? iiil-i-ii:iii--i--i:i:i:i iiiii:Bi-ili-~ii:~iii i~ -.._ ::~_ :. i--~iiiiiiiii~i i-i:iii:i_::-_----:::: --i i-iii ii:iiii-iiiii-ii i-i-i-i iii:i~ii-i-ilii--i:i?iii?i ?ilii'~i:iiiili-Piiiii?:-i:i?i:ii-iQ i-~ii:?i_ :liilii:iiiiiii jiiiiii:-i._~.:~-~~.and. --ii--i~ :i-i-~ :::-::-:?:.:isi:i::--i.:i:i__. --:'-. :_::::::::: . '. Tabard's transformation of the subject is..-ii:: ::::li"~~~~~~a: :-::::::-::-:~":-." . :-:-..:::-j: :--:-?:: ::.::: i::_:_iii~iii3ii~iiiiiili-ij~ii:~~i(F-~ -'_-:--:-i?i-i:::::: ::::: :: .-.:?-::_:??-:: _:::?:?:::-::?:? ?::::::::::::-:::i:: _:::::_:-: ::i::-:::_:::: :i:ii::?-l-:::-::i?i-il-?::-iiiSiii ..: ?i.: :?.:'::':::::-::'i:::i:~i::: :::i :::: ::"':_:--__i:i:i~:..:i~ii~i i:~~j':~-:3-:-(-:-_:::.ii i.:. as fundamentallyefficient.-~.-~i_:.j.i-:--1-::-::-___:-: .::ii:i-i?i:lli:..:--':?:::-:::: iiii$i~--~. 1929.0:.ij::::i::-::j-:::-:::8~1: i:.i~ i$---.cii~s~:i::::""" ::::::::::'::::::::::::j :j:::::-::'::' ~:': :::':: :: r::?:::::il:.i ~~-:~l-i~-i~i~-i: ~~i~:-~-.:::::: _-::i-:i--::-._-~iiiiii i~ii:i:iia:~?-bii-"isi~ii:~l:_::. the resultofa simple manipulation: the flippingof the negative.. --_:-:-:_::-::::-::-1-:j_ .i-i. iiiiii-i:i-ii:~-i~ii-~~ii~~ii~iii-~~?i:i ~~--~~::s~-:i?--::::-_:: ::iiii-i:i...--'-:::-::: --::::i:?-::-~i:i:i:-li~-i~iiil-i:: :::: :I:-:::_:-:i?:-.rotationand solarization.-:..:i:i: : : :..i::l??-?i~ i?:r :::-:? :-:-:: ii~iiili:i: -iiii-:?ijiiiiBi:i:?ai-":i -::-:-:-:.ii:~ :.. Caillois's mimicry. Untitled.riiiiii:-_i::i-i:i-..::?`i:i-~:':.-::2"':'::-:_::-.ii-:::-:-?::::::::: ::::: :.the._:_:-iaiii~ i~~~~ii ::_ -.i-i.:: .:.i::.--.-PCii.:-: .s~. Maurice Tabard.=~_~~.-.i:i:iiii-i:i:i-i-i-iii:iiiiiii-i -i-i-i-:-_::iiiiiiiia:.j :::::::::i -:::: :-i::::: :::::::::-:::i: ::::::::. The premeditationevident in Tabard's choice of elements.-??:i:4-.: i''''':''''''~'-'-'i :.~_ :i--I :: -iiiiiiiiii- M.~.:: ::_-?::::l:_:::::::i:(-:::i:_ ?:_?:_ :":-~?~i-. ~iii~i:9D1 _. This process is both as structurallytied to the procedures of photographyas the other strategieswe have seen ..-:---_:----:_ _:-__-:_:_::-i~i-~iiiiii~iii -i:ii~:~i:iii---i-i:?:-:--?i-i~i-'-'::--::--::-----:-: :-ii:ii:-iii:-iiiii:iiil _I?ii:ii i:iiiiiiiii-iiii~:iiliiii-ii:ii--i-~ . -i-i iiiiili i.:ii::.i.::::':::::'::':::::: : ~. ':. : ::: s-i-ii-iili-i-i-i-i-i _:::::i:ili::~:i?-i::~:li:.ini-wa 5_:~'l~i: ~.~i~~Xil~~Bi ii~ni~~-~i~ ~~B~i-l:i~ii~i~i. and a back.--:-:--?:: ---: -:-: --: -I~~i-i?:-:: :::. :?:-:-:::j.~~~-:~ -i-i-i~i?i-iiiii:: :: i~-il::i(i:iia~lia-i~i~.:.i:~ii:iii-~i-i--I: i:::i:i.of an openbrdlages. . :::::::: -: ::: ::::i::-:.56 OCTOBER simultaneouslya front ject wedged onto the paper-thinplane of reversibility..:_:--. ~~~~iii~ii~~iqiiii~?:i.Bataille's informe...-iiijlii::ili-i:iii-:i:--:-:-:: i.." In most of this work Tabard builds the idea of the mirrorinto the image iiiiii:i'i:i-ii8iai-~.:i:i-ii?i :.i:i:-:---? iiiiiii-i-iii'-iiiii :::-:::-:::::: i?i~i:ii---5.?i-iiiiii:i:i:::::: -i-i~-i-.:-:-:: ::.::?_:-i:i:?_:..i-i-i:i:i~?:---::-::: ::' I.. a subject thatlooks out fromthe point at which it exists.:-i ':::::'-i'--i ~i~~~~.i-i~. i'i:-''--?-:i:::::::i:i-i:i:::i::i-::::~ ::i::_ --: :-: ::-: ----. 1929.:-: :-:-'?-i-:-i?i-i:iiil i:i-i-i-i-ii:: --i. ::? B:r'i'i'j'i:j:-slii ':~'"~----::: -~:_-ji i-:j:_~:_ ::-: _ :::"~-_:i~~iiii ..::l::::-::--i:-:::::::::::::::~i':-i: i~-niiiii-i:i-iiiii_::-:_.i-i i:ii-i-ii-:---::i::~i:...~Eiije~i ~i~~:~:~l~-iia~~iii~i:~:-:--: :-:-:::: :--i.---:---: . linking of the double series to forma combinatorymechanism.-i-:-::~-i:?i-i::-::%I .-~---~--.I~~ :-:::i--~~-~~i~i~ii~i~.'i'iiiiiil i:::::::: '.:.It is thus.-:::-. :::: ::: ::--:a-:s::-::i:::a::: -i-i~ili-i. _:?: ::::::::::?::::i:::::::::::ic -iil''_-:i-i~i-~ii-::-:: :----i?i:i:::-:-' -i'~i':-":' :::.::::::. :::-.-_-~:::i~:-~:?i -i--? -:i:i-i?i-i-i iiiciiii--:-i-i-i:?--:-:--i~i:(?iii?.::::::-:::::::::::i---: ::-i-liiiiii.-_~----'-:~~~:.:_-s~isiai-i_~ii: :::::::::::::: iakC:~l~~i~ ..:..i ..::: iiiiiB4~: ci~i.:_:iii--?-iii:iiiiiii -iaiiisi?iiiji:iiiiiiijijiiiiiiii ::-_i-i:i:i:l ':'-i:kiiii.~:~B::is~:ZBi ~~~1-~--. no more than Ubac's or his optical meltings. i~~~~''''''-''''"-'--:'-"-'~ -_ :-:---::--:::--.not a matterhere of automatism.::::: -:::_.:::: ii-ii-iiiiii-ii-li :--_.::. _:-:~ _::::?:::::::::::: ::._~-:-w:-::. .::-::ii-i----' ~-----II-::i: :i::::__:: ?:jl:::::::_--::-::: . s. : :-:: i i:iE~l -:i:.i.i~i-.:.--:_:-:-:--':-::r~.:._:::-:j::::s~:::i::..:: --:?:1:i-iii:ii ii_~~i-ijii~ii~i.--::::::::::: Maurice Tabard. the use of a all of this is reminiscent of the single operator to produce his transformations: operations we have been reading throughthe grid of those linked concepts which at this moment combine to redefine the visual.i:-:i::i?_i:i '-''-'''''-''-'-'''ii'i:gi::ii-iil'??i--iioi:-^.iiiiiiiiii ii::_--:-::iiii-iii?iiiiiiiiiiii ai g i-s~:-:::~::-l. i iiii.i~ii:i~iiiiii --ii~: ~~l::i~~-:_i::~-i:ii~---~~-:-:__::::: ..::_ ::::.:::: -::::::::::j:::-:'::::::::: ::: ::: :-:-::--:-:--:':::::: :::::: ::: :::.:p:.

.i~ii~iii-~ii~_ --i-~--::i~i-~ ~s-~...This location of the mirrorin the registerof dread irresistiblycalls to mind another text withinthe psychoanalyticcorpus dear to the surrealists... that the mirrorreflected..a hand mirrorheld by the woman in such a way that it both obliteratesher face and seems to call into being the shadowy... threatening.... Hand and Woman....--:----_::::di~ i. 1929..Referring to Otto Rank's studyof doppelgainger this phenomenon. In its linking of the experience of the double to a sense of menace......----::------- :iziiiloll 118. 1929.. no.." particularlythatmomentwhere he ties the uncanniness triggered by the idea ofthe to the primitive fearofmirrors.... but in the montage that is perhaps his most famous-the photograph chosen by Foto-Auge-the issue takes another a lookingglass is explicitly form....._____ ....faceless.. Foto-Auge. male presence behind though it were his image............ 44.. Verlag. on the otherside of hers.. Akademischer Stuttgart.. r" ~ C ~____~__~~= ..._ --: _WX :-'':---.::~-iii-~iii:~ -:~:::-:::- Maurice Tabard." For in Hand and Woman present.. the work seems to open onto the terrainof Freud's "uncanny... Franz Roh.i WINi-ii .. as its obverse. iiii~~~--~~~iii~i~-i .. Freud writes: He has gone into the connectionsthe "double" has withreflections in 27......Delicti Corpus 57 througha kind of structuraloperation..... :: ..... ...

. From having been an assurance of immortalthe ghastlyharbingerof death. This inventionof doubling as a preserthe first vation against extinction has its counterpart in the language of dreams.although it must be added that superstitiousbelief projects the polished surfacesof mirrors. James Strachey. 1971. Richard Howard. and probablythe"immortal" "double" of the body. however.with the belief in the soul and the fear of death.'" Andre Breton. See also. Grove Press." as Rank says. New York. trans. the facelessnessof the male figure. This double. But the woman's white shift in a Mirror. have sprung fromthe soil of unbounded self-love.with shadows."Whom do I question. 30..the upper portion Ubac's mirror. guardian spirits. "Who am I? If this once I were to relyon a proverb.the blackness of his disguise. Rank. this firstnarcissisticprojection. 62-63. pp.also. ." The Standard Freud. an "energeticdenial of the soul was power ofdeath. soul is imagined. but he also lets in a flood of light on the astonishingevolution of this idea. The University of North Carolina Press. 1953-74. and when this stage has been leftbehind the double takes on a different aspect. XVII.trans. Nadja. as the medium forthe returnof the dead. of Psychological Sigmund Freud. The Double. Nadja opens. then perhaps everything would amount to knowing whom I 'haunt." the shadow is also formany cultures the formin which the souls of the dead return. The Hogarth Press and the Instituteof PsychoSigmund Analysis. Jr. Harry Tucker. .made all the more emphatic in contrastto . 234-235. "The Uncanny. image the I?" in am "Who the rewrite to Breton Andre haunt or take possession of the living. . trans. London. Otto Rank. pp. Such ideas. And indeed. in Tabard's image of threatenedpossession. For the "double" was originallyan insurance against destructionto the ego.the lower halfof her face youthful characterwho pushes of that famous an be could distortedand sightless. 29. 29 The extraordinarywoman who stares at us from the depths of and lovely.28 he becomes ity. Chapel Hill. which is fond of representingcastration by a doubling or multiplicationof the genital symbol. is thus thoughtprimitively through the agency of all doubles: shadows cast by the body as well as the The shadow is the earliest formthroughwhich the body's mirroredreflections. Projecting the persistenceof the bodiless self afterdeath in the formof a "shade.58 OCTOBER mirrors. 1960.fromthe primarynarcissism which holds sway in the mind of the child as in that of primitive man. bringsthe fullthrustof the "uncondition of the mirroras an effect canny" into this image . in the Ubac Portrait too. haunt?"30 Works Editionof theComplete 28. the possibilityof reading the obliterating of shadow.projectshim throughthe conditionof the shade.

. . forexample. or concatenationsof obwithin one's "forces jects everydaylife.these doubles . 237. "The Uncanny." p. Freud. The uncanniness that seems to surroundcertain repetitions of names. it would seem. Breton's notion of objective chance is generated fromthe web of accident and circumstanceof which Nadja seems to have foreknowledge and to which Breton feels himselfeventually to gain admittance throughthe agency of desire. animisticconception of the universe. namely those related to the "omnipotence of thoughts"and to belief in animism.CorpusDelicti 59 Together. which was characterizedby the idea that the world was peopled with the spiritsof human beings.are first given visual formby the image of the self projected onto the external world in the formof one's shadow or one's reflection. throughmechanisms of projection. the carefullyproportioneddistribution 31.bringing exhaltation through a kind of shock-an "explosante-fixe"-the experience of the manifestationsof Breton's objective chance cannot but be illuminatedby what Freud means by the uncanny. Ibid. where shock mixed with the sudden appearance of fate engulfsthe subject: Our analysis of instances of the uncanny has led us back to the old.become the possessors of supernatural power and turn against him." of something that shakes the subject's self-possession." The temptationto ascribe a secret meaning to what seems like the obstinaterecurrenceof a number. The experience of "convulsive beauty. or numbers. and by the narcissisticoverestimationof subjective mental processes (such as the beliefin the omnipotenceof thoughts. both Nadja and L'Amourfou performa strange kind of gloss on the "Uncanny." Freud acknowledges." For in these accounts that develop during the decade 1928-1937. 239.32All those bonds which children and tribal man create between themselves and everythingaround them in order to gain masteryover an all-too-threatening and inchoate environment. p. frequently In Freud's argumentthis ascriptionof meaning to happenstance and this freud referred to by his patientsas assumption of powers of clairvoyance(offhandedly their "'presentiments'which 'usually' come true") can be understood as the reassertionwithin adult life of more psychologicallyprimitivestates. leads people.the magical practices based upon this belief.31 tests. And then. Breton's insistence on the patterns of significance that underlie and control the operations of chance takes on a strange resonance when read against Freud's analysis of coincidence. Freud atto read into these repetitionsthe language of fate. 32. upon us."theidea of somethingfatefuland unescapable where otherwisewe should have spoken of 'chance' only.inventedto master and sustain the individual.

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artificialdolls. can be laid to the "doubts whetheran apparentlyanimate being is really way these objects trigger or whether a lifelessobject might not be in fact animate. 34. wounded by the experience of death. pp. As Spectator I wanted toexplore photography notas a question butas a wound. Explosante-fixe. one could add. the uncanny effectof epileptic seizures and the manifestations of insanity. 240-241. Freud acknowledges. Ibid.CorpusDelicti 61 of magical powers or "manna" among various outside persons and of the imaginationwith things). The frequentsense of the eeriness of waxwork figures. (a theme) . and the revelationthat the beautiful girl "The Olympia is in facta doll/automaton. the subject is stabbed.33 . is an instance of that class of the uncanny that we have already followed. concealed beneath the ordinaryappearance of animation. mechanical processes are at work."34 33." alive. 226. T. Ibid. To the effect produced by dolls.itselfthe evidence of a compulsion to repeat.all are potentialtriggers that metaphysical shudder which is the uncanny.animism. It would seem as though each one of us has been through a phase of individual developmentcorrespondingto thatanimisticstage in primitive men. that none of us has traversedit withoutpreservingcertain traces of it which can be re-activated. involvinga regressionto animistic thinkingand its confusionof boundaries."because these excite in the spectator the feelingthat automatic. For they represent the breakthroughinto consciousness of earlier states of being. and automata.combine in E. .as well as by all those otherfigments narcissism of that stage of developwhich man. p. conversely.Roland Barthes The fear of a wound to the eye. narcissistic of omnipotence. in the unrestricted ment. strove to withstand the inexorable laws of reality. and in this breakthrough. This confusionbetween the animate and the inanimate.. A.and thateverything which now the condition of stirring those vestiges strikesus as "uncanny"fulfils of animistic mental activitywithinus and bringingthem to expression. Man Ray. effect The collapse of the distinction between imaginationand reality devoutlywished by surrealism. Hoffman'sstory Sandman" as Freud's first example of the uncanny.but one which Freud analyzes as the primitive beliefin magic .

the fear of castration. . to produce the image of rigidity:the erectiledoll. which arises fromthe surfacingof anotherorder of infantile experience: that of the complexes. compulsively repositioned within the hideously banal space of kitchen. But in this very pairing that is also a multiplication. deprived of arms. . and the sense that though it is in focus." is concertedto produce In Bellmer'smanipulation of thiscycle. but endowed with a kind of limitlesspneumatic potentialto swell and bulge with smaller protuberances. combine to create both the aura and that are part of the visualityof the imaginary. As he triesto protectthe the pair. Yet there is another section from"The Uncanny" that is importantforreading Bellmer'sPoupie: in the passage already cited with regard to the double.weirdly"technicolor"glow. For. 1938. fantasy.of projection.a pairing of of doubling. For the invention of the protectivestrategyof doubling. La Poupde. the frustration Within this dream-space the doll herselfis phallic. La Poupde. everything of of of the the experience dream.give one the narrative experience of fantasy. 1938. an endless acting out of the process of constructionand dismemberment. Freud writes. and published in Minotaure was finished vivants by 1936 but not published until 1949. stairwell. This entire series.parlor.she seems the veryfigureof tumescence. but the quality of the image with its hand-tinted. Not imaginaryspace of an always-the-samecreature--conreinvention the obsessional does only tinually recontrived. often other times. Hans Bellmer. specifically here.findsits way into the language of dreams to operate thereon the subject of castrationby representing it throughthe multiplicationor doubling of "the genital symbol." For the Poupies.the first in 1934. we findan analysis of its place in dreams.stage endless tableaux of the figureof castration. she is composed of fragmented doubled pairs of legs stuck end-to-end. At members of the doll's body.the first Hans Bellmer recountsthatin 1932 he saw The TalesofHoffmann act of which focuses on the Coppelia/Olympia storyderived from"The Sandman"-and it was this that triggeredhis firstPoupie. could not be more effectively glossed than by Freud's analysis of "The series of which were constructedin 1933 Sandman. a dismembermentthrough which she is deprived of her eyes.or perhaps the more exact characterization would be constructionas dismemberment. one meets the dreamer'sstrategy threatenedphallus fromdanger by elaborating more and more instances of its Hans Bellmer.62 OCTOBER of uncanBut Freud's reading of "The Sandman" and its extreme effect niness turns not simply on the doll's ambiguous presence. LeJeu de Poupie. with its endless elaboration of the same. in this regard she becomes a figureforthe second class of the uncanny. one can never quite see it clearly. but on her dismembermentwithin the story. Sometimes. while the second series.

-:::ii:l~i-?i!:i~i:::i:-:::-:::-::::::: :ii~ii-iiiali-i:::i:i `i~_i-i-i -':':'?':'l'i' iiiiiiiii?:: ::::1:: i:i:i:iPi -i:iii:i -?::::?:-:::::::: -:-:-:--': :-:::-:-~:::i::'-:--:':~l::-.iiiii:-:::: :::-:::: :::-:::::I:.i-i i:-i:: iiiiii:-iii'i:i::-"-:::::-?:?::: ::::::::-:::::-:-:-:I:::.::i:la: .:~--1'~-ag ii-:: :i-':i.iiiii::iiilillii~ :-:-:-:::: --:-:--?i:?n. -- .i-i:i:ii-:i-i-ii-i:i-i:i:i:ii~ i-ii-i-ii-i i:ii:i:--i i-i :--::ii-:-i-i i ::::: -:: :-:::: ::: :: :_ :_:-::::--::: ::::::~I:-:::_::: ::i::i:.~i::i ::: :::l:_-i-:-:-::-::::--: :::_i::-j:::i: il:i~l ::: ::::: -:-:-::::::: :::I :. . -~~iiii~i:i i?:.:?:--:-i:::::::::::: :-: -:: ?:':?:-:::::::i::: -?--:r::: :_:-_--:: ::: -: : :---::-:_:::::.i------:i-ii-_:-:::i::: ::::::-::i-----:-i:-l--- ::::::: ::::::: :-::: ::: -::- iiiii~iiii-ii:~ii~ .:: :::::::::::j :::::::::li::::::: :~::::: : i:i .:::.:: ::::_:: :::ir:-i:i:::::: i:-~i-i:.iiiliffl: :: -:_::: :: ::::.::-~9:::::: : :::::i :i:--:i li-:-::-ii::: i-. :::i:-::?:-:: ::~~~:._o-:-_-__-_::-i:::-::::::: ::::: :-::-::::: i~j~.:-:: -: i iiii~~' ::::~ -_:-___ a: -::. ::::_:' ::: i-:::: :::::i-i -i-i:-:i:ii :i --------: . :.::-::::-:::--?':-x:-i:-: ~ii-ii:iii liii:iiii.-i: :::: ::::::::: ::: :?:ai:~:i~i:i:i ___ ii:iiiii: -~iiiiiiiiiii ii: iiiiiiiiiiiiiii~iiBi~iiiiii~iiiiin .~ -:::?in:::::_:-: ::i::::i:?:::: iiiiiiiii::i:i-iii.:::: :iii:-i:.

Richard Howard. piercing its outer shield. too.develops a in each of its parameters. "Medusa's Head. the photograph. 273. human interest may or may not contain. p."'36 The storythat Barthes recounts in his book starts with this moment of shock. sciousness. the absence of of the technicalrule acwhich is the cause of the horror. 1938. And I realized then. trans." S. Sigmund Freud." Which meant he began to think between the general." half the course of his book is devoted to his attemptto articulatethe nature of this photographicdetail that arrestshis attention. they neverthelessserve aca as tually mitigationof the horror. the blow that takes one recasts the the Pleasure Principle by surprise.Jerome. wounding it by this effect Bellmer's connection of the doll. La Poupee. is an elaboration make fourdecades later in Camera of the uncanny.the analysis that Barthes was to logic thatprefigures. Lucida. Hans Bellmer. in advance. "My interest in Photography took a more cultural turn.This is a confirmation a of to which multiplication penis symbols signifiescastration. CameraLucida. 1981. the wound. and thus prickingor bruising the spectator: the "punctum.this is the strategicachievement of anxiety.that pricks it.forthey replace the penis.announced with of the of the uncanny photographiceffects of his text: "One first words the very day. in order to protectoneselffrom what one fears."35 cording To produce the image of what one fears. castrated head is surrounded by snakes. speaks of the trauma as a blow that penetrates the protectivearmor of conof stabbing. photography analytically. After that. the double. for they seemed to understandneitheritsnature nor its power on him. which. taken in 1852. Hill and Wang.E. Hans Bellmer. For this work. he tells us. he says. This is what Freud would later identify where the decapitated. in a series in which each one stands in symbolicrelationto the other. I happened on a of photograph Napoleon's youngest brother. New York. against the onslaught of trauma. Barthes. 35. quite some time ago. 3. 1938. he eventually forgotabout it. thispunctum. by constructinga difference and the kind ofdetail they thatphotographselicit: the"studium".64 OCTOBER symbolic proxy. La Poupee. p. . Alone withthissensation of unease. This analysis throughwhich Beyond propositionsof "The Uncanny" in termsof the lifeand death of the organism.. he could not share with others. XVIII. 36. the dreamer very produces--although transformed--the as the Medusa image of what he fears. which punctures that generality. which arms the subject. which effect "however frightening they may be in themselves. with an amazement I have not been able to lessen since: 'I am looking at eyes that looked at the Emperor. rupturing or Over lacerating it.

....::.. . ... . "N~i .... ....i~i.. ... ai'iiiiii~ji zi~ iY ii?g~??iii ..... ... ~i'i ... . Ax :::::-2-44 . .

...::::i::i:::i li_:g--: ~---i-i-~---i~--:llii-.::::::::::::::.:::: :. . Hans Bellmer.. ~6?:i::* ~-~P:--~---:i:~_ii:~: -:----::~::::: ::i i:::::::i::: :--:-::::-_:i-::::--:----:P~W ::::-:r: :-:::i-:: :i:~::i:::::: sii~~i~i :__-:::: :::::: h~~s~ .Z ~-ai i:: a?ir?.. :::::::-~-::1::::: i~:-'---::-:::::::-:--':-:::?:---:-:-'S-:'--i: :::::l::::::i::::: ::::: ::.-:-::::-:::_::: ::::::::::'::: :::: : La Poupee.-iMs'-::-:i~~-.::::::-. 1937.:~:::i:: i~~-x:-.::: ::::::::. Hans Bellmer. 1936..._. .:::: ::::: ::_ :::.:~~"::-~:-:'':'::::::::::~":::?:':. L'Idole.:-:----::i:-:--':::I:..----:-:.::.:: -:-:-:~--i-~---i :~s::: L-~---~~ ~~~C:~? '-ii iEi-~e~ i:':-i:::~-i'':'---i-i-~---:-ii:i:i-i~i-iiii-i-i'i-i ~iIiiE ~ii$ii:~---i ::::::: :::::::i:...~ :I::.::i.~.:.

the photographtells me death in the future. cited Encyclopaedia in Hollis Frampton. p. p. p. is largely due to the quality of authenticity in the The spectator itsauthorphotograph. 73. Barthes. over a catastrophe which has already occurred. accepts believes he ityand. "It exists only forme. uncanny. Whether or not the subject is already dead.""37 The appeal to our emotions . - Edward Weston The revelationthat Camera Lucida recountscenterson the one photograph the book does not reproduce because. . "the wound. like Winnicott'spsychoticpatient. For you. No. 64. foryou.photogeny. 5 "Impromptus (Summer1978). every photograph is this catastrophe. Once more there is the shock thatwas delivered by the graph of now more radical and image Jerome Bonaparte.and. .finding her essential image in a photoof her a as child. . ."" impossible science of the unique being. raphy's "authenticity" But the whole of this century'sphotographicaesthetics.. no 39 The science of photographythat Barthes founds here is." October. and photogis redefined. then." The grip of photography'svaunted objectivityis loosened here. on EdwardWeston:Everything in Its Place.the nature of the ofPhotographic 38. For the punctum Barthes begins to tell about looking throughan album of photographsafterthe death of his mother. clothes. in viewingit. EdwardWeston. Ibid. a certaintywhich the punctum -"the real punctum of the photograph [that] is Time"-. 39. one which connects it to the kind of sudden fright that that is the punctures the organism's defenses or to the shudder of fatefulness now is used for the experience of seeing a ghost.I shudder. And Barthes realizes that the scandalous effect of photographyis the certainty of the "that-has-been" that attaches itselfto the image. 37." the paradox of "the truth. 96." "Techniques Britannica.CorpusDelicti 67 Barthes's scholarlynarrativeis then broken by a ratherdifferent construction of the punctum. 1941. it would be nothingbut an indifferent picture .but in it. only wounding as he confronts the being of his motheras a being-past establishedby the verymedium that recorded her as a being-who-was-going-to-die.for me.decodes as the image of mortalityitself:"By givingme that absolute past of the pose (aorist). as Barthes says of this image. perforce wouldhaveseenthat scene orobject so exactly 38 ifhe had beenthere.. at most it would interest your studium: period. miraculously.

." For how can it be real.?i::::::::? lii-s~Li.:-::?::::::::-:_-_-'::::-:--:--:.:-~~i-~-a :: i-ii~~~~ii:iiii~i:i.i:i:?:ii~iiiiiDiii.. ::-::: ::::cl:: :. .ii ~_ii-~: -:.or solarizations.IIDi~I-8?i~-~~~~:B~~OBOI~~~s~FBBi?a~l?biia i:-:?:i:~-iiii?s?--::.:: ::: :: :: . and continues to deliver.:: -:_:::::::?:::::: : : -: :::::-:1:::-:: ::::i--. "that it cannot Which is one way of saying that the supposed survive correctivehandwork. to any contrivance which would seem to construct"the real. in which the photograph exists as a con. 49..:~ll. -i-i*-i*:~i:~i:ii~i:*i~~~~~~:: :_ _::::::::_:: ::::-:::_-:_:_ : :: -::_??-:i. if it is fabricated? This is the same scandal that surrealist photography has long-since delivered. For surrealistphotographyis contrivedto the highestdegree. to the congregation of Straight Photography.fabricated"forme". Frampton. and that even when it is not involved in actual superimpositions. i-a:i:s. Contrivance we could say is what insures 40.. :--i-:i-i?:::-:-:_:i-i-i-i-i : -i--: ::: I r9~ -il ~E`9~%s~a-:w:s~~~---~ I ~?g~e~8~ss~i~ig~i~~~~ ~-:::::::I:-:-:-:::::?:. or double exposures. as is all photographicactivitythat resortsto construction:to darkroom manipulation.:::_ :::::: :: . a scandal forthe aestheticsof StraightPhotogstruct raphy._liiiiil:_i_~. Barthe's subjectivism. StraightPhotographydiscourages to the greatestdegree any tamperingwith the image. 1935. the objectivity of the photograph authority The code of it views the world. I' ~a~c~c~~ :-:~:_r :.~~--!i~i~isi~~~iiiiiiiiiiio--~i.::i:L:?:ii 'I~sr~S~OI~~ :: .i? Man Ray. to the manipulation of scissors and paste. or what have you.ii::i~-~-liili~ll .:. -:: -:--:-:??_ .68 OCTOBER photographic image is such.~i -:1. Untitled. as Edward Weston admonishes."40 of its objectif in is its truth-value.i: :iii~:iii:ii?i-iiii ~i~~?~i-. iiiiiiii:. with which in the "straightness" (or lens).

:"'''':. and is thus or always apobject....41 Analyzing fashion as the unconscious constructionof a used changing set of signs forthe erogenous zones of the body. . ~-ii :.. ::: :.i:--i-i-:i-ii ii-i:ii iii: iii--ii iii-a~-ieii:l::i:: :'::::: -:::_ --:------_--:----_ ?:-i:-=i-:~-i-:-::i-i--i:l-:--ii-~iiiii~ i:ii-iri-iiii. the split-crown 41.. and always.-i-iiii-ini~ii:i-~ -::-_--:::iiii-~iiiiii:ix:i?i-i-iii-i:--_i:i-iii: ~' :-:: :: :i :il ::ili-/:iiiiiiii:iii''~''"''''~:''..: ::: . constructed... :_i:i:i-i-:. :::::::::_:::-_::-:-':::i'\l....$:~i=-aiiii::iiii'iii~ iiiiii~iiiii:."':~'''. .: :-j:::-::-j:::: -j'--biii:i:S-iiii-iiF-i--i---: :~:----:--i------'-:---: . : :i:ii-iiiiiiii-i--?-i:i:i-i: .i:_:i: .:.::::::::':---::? -:::'::::-::'i'??:i::.:-:::::: ::::II::::::\:-_:-:::i:.::::-::::--: : _:::_-:-:-::::::::?-:??i-:---liPi:ii~ii?::: i~ iiiiii:-ii-_:liii -iii?iiiiiiii-~iiii-riiiiiii:i aii-:i:-i-:-:-::"?' "'. ~ ~. '. ::_l:li...:ii-i'iii i?i .-ici-iWijii-ii.i-i-i-::--_:----'-i." No.?i-i:i:i:iiiiiiiiiiiiiiii:iiii::i-ii: iiiiiiii:iii . :.::...:i-i: -i-i ::_ --iii:ii ~i:i :i:i . forexamthata photographwill seem surrealist:why Man Ray's Anatomy ple.i-:i:i:. :_-: ::-::.i: :-:---_::----:::::::: :: .-:--ii --. Tzara's textgoes on of a the sexual organs in the register to definefashionas a systemforrewriting the of 1933 decreed of fashions sexual identityhaving peculiar displacement of female genitalia in the thatwomen wear hats that create representations form fedora (and that effect heightened ofmasculine garb. ii i-:-i :::::::-:::: ?:?:?: :::.: :: iiii -i-: i:i:i i:'ii. ~-~ii~iii Bii~-iii-:-i -i:-----::::::::: r~iii-ii:::::i:i:i liii-i::-i:::: ::: i::-: -------~Btii: i-i---~i:-:iiiii-:: __~ii~iii~i~:: ~i:~-i~--. 3 (1933).-. :.definedthrougha gestureof substitution.iiiii-ii-iii:ii: -i:i . always manipulated.~isci:iiii-iii-i ii_-ii.i_?i:i i:i. even in the absence of any darkroommanipulation.: -..irii:i .i~iiii~i:i ~iii~iiIl~::. pears as a fetish.::. iiiiiiilii:i: -?:-ii :ii: :::: ::::?:::::::: ._::-:':':i :2:-:::-:::-'-::::::::::i:_:-::_'..::.-.:-..i:i--i:--::-:--:--:ii--:.:.We see the object by strangetransposition The means of an act of displacement...-ii:i:i~ii~iff--:?IIE::i:-?i-.:iiiii-iibi ` ..: i-:ii -i:i-i:ii_:: . .througha of thisthinginto a different register. :. 81-85.--: -iliiiiii-i:ig:r:?li:ii?1~8??: : . :::: :::: i -:??-?:-_-::-:-:-i: :i-iiiiiiiiiiiiiia'ii!i?-i'i?iiiii-':': _:-i:::::_i::-::: ::::'?:''---'iiii:iPiiiii -:.:j::::-:..:: .....It is this fetishization A directenunciation of thisprincipleoccurs in both Tristan Tzara's essay . For surrealistphotographydoes not admit of the natural... :---:: --.-iii-i'i? iiii :: i::iii? iii:i-i.:::.---:-:-_-: :i .. i-iiiiiiiii:iiiii: iiIi: iiii:si:i:iiii--: -_-s:i(i-i i: -i--? :: ::: -: -: .::i ii: -:-:----::: iii'~i~ii-ii.iiiiii:':izi:~. of realitythat is the scandal. _ ..'ii:i:ii.ii:iiiiii.:::. :.: .-i ::--:-:: .::::::i:::: :::::::::::::: .--::-i: ::-:-: iii:i-i?i-i: iii:ii: -:iiiiii-iii-iiiii '''?iii'8i'-':':'''i:i:i-::8:-iii: :i:i:iiii: :: -i::i:::-:-i::i:::::: -i~-i-i-i:i: -i-ii'i_ :::i_-iii. :~_Biii~iii: . ::':::: ': .:-li -.Delicti Corpus 69 is so. i?i:-:i-i-i-ii.:::-:i::::.'::iiiiiiiii i-i: iii:iii.::-" :::i-. Minotaure.aiiiiil-' .:.iiii-:i':'?':i:ii':"iil7:':":: ::i . __iiiiiii_ ii-:iiii:iiiiiiii :ii-_i-i_ I-~ -:. _-::: ii:~:i_--.:.. -'''''i''' i`'i'i'i ':--i'ii'i:i:iiii '::':" -:' -:--: -'?. And so all of what it looks at is seen as if already. pp.and Man Ray's photographs du gout" in certain automatisme Minotaure--"D'un to illustrateit.. TristanTzara. Untitled. namely. "D'un certain automatisme du gout... as opposed to the culturalor made. 1933. "straight" manipulated.i':'''' .-?:-:_: -:---~9ii~ %ii:~iii___ii-::ii: : : ::: Brassai.:i'ijrl ::? si-': i':iiii----ii:i-ii ?: -: :-: :)::j:-:::::i::i:j ::ij::::.i:i:ii-i ::::::::: --:':" i:li'iii-~iiii-i~iii.::::.: i-i-i -iii I-: I-:ii-: iiii::ii-i i:i--:: _i -i:i-i:-:::--ii--:i:_:ii:--::::::-:::::::: :.. .ii-i:i-ii--i:: .

._i ( __ _j ijii _: _... : : :: i .'i i :i iiii:_i:i i i :----iii:i--ii_::i -i-l:-_: I :_ _: I -I?i-- i__i -?: __:.::...: _: _ : !i~~i~ I::i ! ?: -i. .~~~ ~~~~~~~~~~~~~ .. .. .: ..... ::::::::::: :::-:l?:ii-i ::-:i:i:::: I--:: 1_ :i:i i:-ii-i:i-i--- . .. . ?.-.. ? ?: iiiiii'-:-iii:ii-iii 1-:l-11- :-::~:il-.

p. obsessional subject."Freud writes. male attireas bow ties. p."some process has been suddenly interrupted.we know in and does not wish to forego 42And the fetish-as-substitute is why. essay Man Ray puts thisprecise construction as the hat's roundforexample.CorpusDelicti 71 Tzara pointsout. its logic "To put it plainly: the fetish turnson the refusalto accept sexual difference. garters.One hears thismost distinctly during that famous collective mapping of the terrainof the sexual act. and decrees that on the site of its arrest there be built the sexually indeterminant substituteof the fetish. 43."Fetishism. . produces the image of collapsed sexual identity ed expressionof the head beneath it articulatesboth male and femaleorgans at once.E.and so forth). SigmundFreud. in being a "shine on the nose.woman . Only one other image in the surrealistphotographiccanon puts this colquite so directly:Brassai's 1933 Nude where the felapse of sexual difference male male body and the organ have become each the sign forthe other. La Rdvolution its central. 37. is a substituteforthe woman's (mother's)phallus which the littleboy once believed . One of his photographs. it must be seen that in much of surrealistpractice woman. . the last moment in which the woman could still be regarded as phallic. . If fetishismis this substituteof the unnatural for the natural. at the Breton's strictures rue Fontaine in 1928. XXI. fabricated. by the additionsof ornamentin the formof such even further.. Freud's .demonstratesthe visual componentof thisinstitution: the real." "Recherches sur la sexualitY. I wish to take a stand against this idea.the famous "shine on the nose". "When the fetishcomes to life."I wish to signal that forthe first time in the course of thisdiscussion the word 'pathological'has been put in play.this blow occurs in the realm of the visual.In the images he created forthis in place."' it also oftenbears the imprintof its innot only a denial of sexual difference. which fabricates sight Surrealism can be said to have explored this possibilityof a sexualitythat is not grounded in an idea of human nature. S. Having dissolved the natural in which "normalcy" can be grounded. That seems to implyon the part of some of us an idea of normalcy. woven of fantasyand its chain of subfirst example of the fetish that are further stitutions complicated througha displacement of language (as the English "glance at the nose" was transposed into German as Glanz [or shine] a momentof aufder nase). but is instead."43 Surrealism'shaving taken the love act and its object. what is possibly the last impression received before the uncanny traumaticone is preserved as a fetish. surrealism was at least 42. when Aragon imperiouslyinterrupts on the unnaturalness of this or that practice with. or the natural. which now becomes the theater for the endless rehearsals of a fabricatedvision. Surrialiste. . stitution within a moment of arrest that occurs within the visual register. 152-153. ." This blow that stops time." is nowhere in nature. 11 (March 1928).

is a figurefor the wound that every photographhas the power to deliver. categories. otherprojects to rethinkphotography. the double of life who is death. /photograph/ and indistinct. to use Edward Weston's word. .the informe. There are. /woman/and become figuresfor each other'scondition: ambivalent. throughthe agency of the photograph. foreach one is also a double and a death: "All those young photographerswho are at work in the world. its resolutiona figureof the unityof what the spectatorsees. released by the doll and by the essence of photography. /woman/was in construction. seems to findunbearable a photographythat effacescategories and in the uncanny. p. may correspond to the intrusion. in its uncanniness. . That subject.And thus to returnto CameraLucida. viritifoll'e 44.Surrialisme et sexualiti. The night that he found the photographof his mother.1971. 92. in Xavibre Gauthier. Life/Death: the paradigm is reduced to a simple click. 45. . Contemporarywiththe withdrawalof rites. at the heart of the surrealistprojectwas one of these job of the informe. chafedby reality. of an asymbolic Death. the one separating the intitialpose fromthe finalprint. a kind of amourfou.It is forthisreason thatthe frequent characterizations of surrealism as antifeministseem to me to be mistaken. Barthes. This is maintained. was constantlyin construction. authority. for she is there as well the obsessional subject.given the illusion of mastery over it. outside of religion. in our modern society. of course. Gallimard. blurred. determined upon the capture of actuality. . . in which a reading is opened onto deconstruction.for example. theirplace erects the fetish.44 Within surrealistphotographic practice. do not know that they are agents of Death. we should note the ending that Barthes gives to this mythic tale of the science of photography.which Barthes describes as a "gone mad" and an instance of "la is. outside of ritual. armed with a vision that plunges deep into realityand. its convulsiveness. And since the vehicle through which she is figured is itselfmanifestlyconstructed." The automaton.72 OCTOBER potentiallyopen to the dissolving of distinctionsthat Bataille insisted was the Gender. a wholeness which in turnfoundsthe spectatorhimself as a unifiedsubject. whose dancing with the hero stirredin Barthes pangs of love that he linked to the madness he associated with his newly organized feelings about photography:"a new formof hallucination. If withinsurrealistpoetry/woman/ then at certain moments that project could at least prefigurea next step.Barthes tells us. . a mad image. The nature of the authoritythat Weston and StraightPhotographyclaim is grounded in the sharplyfocused image. a kind of abrupt dive into literal Death. . lacking in. Paris. he saw a movie in which therewas an automaton."45 and thatcomThat simple click is what Bretonhad called the explosante-fixe bination of madness and love.