Wednesday, October 07, 2009

The Avant-Garde Nature of Winky Dink

Tonsure. Marcel Duchamp with haircut by George de Zayas, Paris, 1919. Photo by Man Ray.

In the book, Dada Culture: Critical Texts on the Avant-Garde, edited by Dafydd Jones, T.J. Demos writes:
In 1919 Duchamp had the shape of a star cut into the hair on the back of his head (Tonsure). Here, the articulations of his artistic practice...intersected with his bodily appearance, as language's flight crossed over Duchamp's own physical decontextualisation. Duchamp threw himself into the flux of expatriation, rewriting his own appearance, and giving life to his own inscriptions.
The author goes on, with terms like "ephemeral tattoo," "eventual erasure," "sublime state of pure becoming," and "perceptual counterpoint." You get the idea. I really can't bear to transcribe any more.

Winky Dink. Dell comic book, 1955.

No doubt, existential angst and surrealistic tendencies led my boyhood idol Winky Dink (see previous post "Winky Dink and Me") to adorn his cranium with a star. He was so out there, he went Duchamp one better by wearing a star for a collar.

1 comment:

bettyl said...

Isn't it interesting how "there's nothing new under the sun"?


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