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.... respicit Orpheus'.

By A. Rifkin


This essay demonstrates a commitment to art criticism as a research practice in contemporary visual culture, working along the boundaries of problems in psychoanalytic cultural theory, classical survival and the complex historical temporalities of different modes of cultural discussion. Hence the relation between Ovid as a conventional source of European iconography and a strange underpinning of a specifically Jewish appropriation in Ettinger's work, ironically through my use of a Christian theological model of representation. This emerges as an uncanny procedure a hybrid modelling which is both deliberately anachronistic and, as such, a practice in the exploration of Walter Benjamin and Theodor Adorno's notion of constellation. The question may well be put like this: in the explication of an artwork, what kinds of theoretical and critical discourse may hold together and how may they be allowed to disaggregate or explode? Thus the essay is both particular, focussed on Ettinger and it is methodological without claiming any one model as always effective. Here, as in other pieces, the question of rhetorical framings emerges as significant if latent

Publisher: The Drawing Center
Year: 2001
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