Thursday, August 27, 2009

Jacques Gautier d'Agoty (1716 - 1785)

Wikipedia : Gautier d'Agoty
Myologie complette en couleur et grandeur naturelle
"I think the experience of dissecting a human cadaver is a profoundly moving one. There's no question that the whole process, day by day, of paring away the skin, separating the blood vessels and nerves, delving down through the muscles, laying bare the physical being that once walked this earth, is deeply moving, and is as close to a human being as one can ever get."
-- J.G. Ballard

"We have contests in which we decide who is the most beautiful woman in the world, and yet, if you were to show the inside of that woman's body, you would have a lot of grossed-out people. Why is that? We should be able to have a World's Most Perfect Kidney contest, where women or men unzip to show their kidneys. We can't become integral creatures until we come to terms with our bodies and we haven't come remotely close to that. We're incredibly schizophrenic."
-- David Cronenberg

"We left her head intact for your viewing pleasure."
-- Gautier d'Agoty

"Indeed. She lies not on her stomach, as would be necessary for the dissection of the back muscles, but sits up and peers slightly, altogether not unlike the myriad coy nudes in contemporaneous paintings. Indeed, the intertextual relation between this image and the painted nude is increased by the effect of Gautier d'Agoty's varnishing his prints to give them something of the luster of oil paintings -- the prints veritably glisten with a sheen that deepens their colors and contributes to our pleasure in looking. The mutilated woman is alert, and seemingly made up to receive us, hair carefully coiffed, eyes bright, and ears pink. She is, in short, alive and expressive. She is also predominantly the color of blood. (Gautier d'Argoty's use of color printing favored red.) The 'wings' formed by her folded-out back flesh and muscles -- the Surrealists named her the 'anatomical angel' -- seem to vibrate with blood flow, though not a drop of it is shed by the procedure."
-- 'Art and the Committed Eye' by Richard D. Leppert

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