Download Blake’s Drama: Theatre, Performance and Identity in the by Diane Piccitto PDF

By Diane Piccitto

Blake's Drama demanding situations traditional perspectives of William Blake's multimedia paintings through reinterpreting it as theatrical functionality. considered in its dramatic contexts, this artwork shape is proven to impress an lively spectatorship and to depict identification as ironically crucial and developed, revealing Blake's investments in drama, motion, and the physique.

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Extra info for Blake’s Drama: Theatre, Performance and Identity in the Illuminated Books

Sample text

She argues, ‘[T]he Milton Gallery tests the possibility that such arrested instants may merge into a continuous movement and produce moving pictures’ (106). By having to create the connections from image to image to reconstruct the narrative of the epic, she posits a viewer who makes meaning from painting to painting, enacting the analogous process of a filmgoer who, according to Sergei Eisenstein’s theory of montage, makes links between sequential shots in a film. Calè’s point shows that Fuseli’s Milton Gallery facilitated the kind of viewer who could see motion in stasis to create what Fred Burwick might call a ‘Pygmalion-moment’ (versus a ‘Medusa-moment’) (‘Ekphrasis’ 81), much as Blake’s works do, I would argue, reading a theatrical dynamism where Calè reads a cinematic one.

With respect to the process of interaction, an audience member can attend all the performances of a play staged by a particular theatre company, and each of those can even involve the same actors for the whole run, but every performance will differ due to the response of the audience at any given moment, delivery of lines, execution of the action, and way the audience focuses and refocuses its attention as the show unfolds before them. With Blake’s Illuminated Books, each encounter changes, depending not only on which copy we happen to hold but also on the way in which we set the design–text interplay in motion.

Calè discusses a similar process by which ‘the reader turned spectator’ in Fuseli’s exhibition of a series of paintings depicting scenes from Paradise Lost (Fuseli’s Milton Gallery 105). She argues, ‘[T]he Milton Gallery tests the possibility that such arrested instants may merge into a continuous movement and produce moving pictures’ (106). By having to create the connections from image to image to reconstruct the narrative of the epic, she posits a viewer who makes meaning from painting to painting, enacting the analogous process of a filmgoer who, according to Sergei Eisenstein’s theory of montage, makes links between sequential shots in a film.

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