This photography was taken after the picture “A Bar at the Folies-Bergère” by Édouard Manet
Print on photo paper, attached onto a PVC sheet, framed
ABOUT THE IDEA:
“Romeo and Juliet” is a story about the road from the world of children to the world of the grown-ups. At thirteen, fourteen, fifteen, we are closest to God – we find, understand and feel most immediately, fully, vividly the whole Great Universal Design that we’re a huge meaningful part, and a tiny insignificant particle of, all at once. At thirteen, fourteen, fifteen… we’re also closest to the Devil – one instant, the incomprehensible reality of life makes us so happy we feel like flying and loving everyone, the next makes us want our neighbour’s death… or even our own. During these few years in life, we are for the first time and for the last EVERYTHING at once – a child and an adult, beloved and hated, a genius and a fool, a beauty and a beast, an angel and a demon. We want to melt into infinity and at the same time stand out among all others; one second, we dream of being kings and rulers, the next - wretched beggars; in the morning, we run around with a blissful smile, in the afternoon, we throw ourselves on the ground, with our “own tears made drunk”; now petting a cute kitten, now bashing its skull in with rage… The story of Romeo and Juliet is the story of the encounter of two beings along the same road to the world of adults, the world of sensations, dulled by cares, the world of blinding passion, a world where both love and hate must be subdued in order to live… The story of an Encounter, which two people decide to call Love, and which is Love, because when we’re fourteen, fifteen, sixteen… the girl is Eve, the boy is Adam, and it is up to them to give names to everything God created for them. Romeo and Juliet’s Love is just like them – as much childish as mature, as much selfless as selfish, as much inspired by Eros as tempted by Thanatos. In this Love of theirs, Romeo and Juliet – just like every boy and every girl in the world – wrap themselves in a cocoon and the cute fuzzy caterpillars turn into pupae – those sinister creatures that go through their strange metamorphoses in the dark before re-emerging as butterflies. In these moments “in the dark” Juliet is also the deadly Delilah, who seduced Samson, and the mysterious “girl with a past” from the Folies-Bergère bar, and an innocent victim of humankind’s sins, and the embodiment of the greatest love and suffering… Romeo and Juliet are Everything and Everyone, they inhabit no specific era and have no real Self, because they realize the dream of melting into infinity, though the price they pay is death.
ABOUT THE PHOTO SERIES:
The “Romeo and Juliet” series consists of five photographic “replicas” of famous artworks, and ten photo-paintings, which do not copy specific works of art, but are rather inspired by classical examples. The photo-replicas represent iconic moments in the play and by serving as a bridge to other plots, give substance to the idea that Romeo and Juliet’s story tells not only of fatal love (“Samson and Delilah”, Rubens), but also of anxious anticipation (“A Bar at the Folies-Bergère”, Manet), of overwhelming grief (“Pietà ”, Michelangelo), of innocent victims (“The Descent from the Cross”, Rogier van den Weyden), and of cruelty that knows no boundaries (“The Third of May 1808”, Goya).
photo paper, PVC sheet