Sunday, August 17, 2008

#58-Pashinyan- The Other Side of the World

58. ինստալյացիա
Բայց, այնուամենայնիվ, հոգեւորն ու մարմնականը այնքան էլ անհաշտ ու հակոտնյա չեն, ինչպես թվում է առաջին հայացքից: Հոգեւորի ու մարմնականի հաշտեցումը թերեւս մարդկային կեցության ամենամեծ հրաշքներից է, եւ այդ հրաշքը կոչվում է Սեր:

58. Installation

Nevertheless, the spiritual and physical are not that irreconcilable and antithetical as it may seem at first glance. The reconciliation of the spiritual and physical is probably one of the greatest miracles of human existence, and that miracle is called Love. It’s interesting, isn’t it? God has given the human race a small space where indescribable passions can spread, where people can indulge in the most uncontrollable ecstasy and still not sin. And what’s more, that little space where erotic events can take place, is considered sacred; that space is called the marriage bed. And it is here that man can be liberated from the passions that enslave him.

Frankly put, I’ve always been surprised by the inclination of gays and lesbians to get married. I’ve always been surprised at their desire to have the right to be married. Later, I had looked at the recognition of their right to marry from the point of view of the church. Yet in Tokyo, only in Tokyo, I was able to understand what they wanted was to have their own space without sin, having a small marriage bed where, whatever they did couldn’t be considered a sin. When I was in Armenia, homosexual marriages seemed disrespectful to me. But away from Armenia, I now see that these people, consciously or unconsciously just want that their love not be considered a sin. But this isn’t something humanity should decide; this belongs to God’s sphere of authority.


I wonder how Paola, Quentin and Isabelle are doing. What happened to Charles and Cecile? And I wonder if the exchange rate for the sexual act is still alive. The interesting thing is that when I say Cecile, I remember her light blue thighs. From the beginning, I was really very interested in Cecile. But it’s too hot to wear long stockings in Cuba, so when she took off her stockings, I think my interest died down. On the plane, however, and I kept this from you, dear reader, on the plane I kept looking at the sleeping Cecile’s light blue thighs. I had forbidden myself to do that, but did it anyway and continued to dismiss the barrier I had imposed on myself. I had looked at those light blue thighs and regretted that I was not a painter. She would probably have agreed to pose for me; I would have asked her to take off her skirt and stand on the table. I would have painted her light blue thighs, from the knees up. I wouldn’t have represented the groin except maybe by just a reference. But I would have asked Cecile not to wear anything under the stockings. I would have painted a light red background to the canvas, similar to the juice of a ripe watermelon. Then I would have painted Cecile’s thighs, which would have been the color of the sky, like the summer skies in Yerevan. Then I would have made a small reference to the groin, just to show that the thighs belonged to the same person and not someone else. That motif I would have taken from Paola’s variant of ‘guess what’s in here.’ That is how I would have painted Cecile’s thighs. But most importantly, for this canvas, I would have gotten a rococo frame, which would have been in guilt and which would have decorations in the style of rococo. But because I’m not a painter, I can’t picture the effect of shadow and light on the canvas, which makes me hesitate. But that’s not a dead end, maybe the avant-garde and modern art movements have been created for such instances. I won’t only paint Cecile’s thighs, but I would exhibit them in an avant-garde gallery. And this is how it would happen. We would prepare a small cabin in papier-mâché with enclosed, opaque walls. On one of the walls, at eye level, we would open a right angled hole. Beyond that opening, as background, we would hang a piece of cloth in the color of ripe watermelon or just paint the walls in that color. We would also put up some lights for the background. Then we would ask Cecile to take off her skirt; she, of course, wouldn’t be wearing anything under the light blue stockings. Then we would ask her to enter the cabin and stand on the pedestal. The pedestal would be situated such that from the only opening of the cabin, the window we’ve opened would show Cecile’s thighs, above the knees, and a little glimpse of the groin. Most importantly, we would frame that window in the same rococo style frame. I’m convinced that that in front of that display sample—they call it ‘installation,’ I think—before Cecile, a huge crowd would gather. Cecile, of course, can’t stay immobile for long and would change the positions of her thighs, as she had done on the plane, in her asleep. But that’s even better; it would make our installation more interesting. Ah, I wish I could be invited to such an installation. I would show Cecile’s light blue thighs, and, why not, Paola’s jelly-like ass, and Isabelle’s breasts. But the last two would be against a black, completely black background.

Oh, I shouldn’t forget the title of Cecile’s installation. The title is very important, extremely important, especially in painting. Martiros Saryan, for example, is a great painter, very great. But he has an important shortcoming: his canvases are entitled with monotonous, almost non-expressive and unremarkable titles.

They are magnificent canvases. But when you’re sitting in a café with someone, and after looking at his brilliant canvas, often you can’t tell which one of the canvases you have in mind because either the title is not impressive or, there are a few canvases with the same title. So the title of the display sample is very important; we will call our installation “sky blue thighs’ or “Cecile’s sky blue thighs.” The second is better and more convincing. The only thing left is to convince Cecile and engage the interest of a gallery.


The act played by the woman in the chador also suggested some ideas on ‘installation.’ I thought there was no other clothing in this world which you can put on so quickly. And also, the face is covered, so the voluptuous expression of the girl doesn’t let onto anything. So, the chador can also be considered the uniform of ‘forbidden love.’ At any rate, no other clothing is so appropriate for that kind of performance. Maybe that’s what the producer of the act had in mind.

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