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On violence

Rhynolion (detail)

It’s not easy to begin a new body of work. I’m still trying to understand my interest in the monster topic.

While I was painting this “Rhynolion” I started thinking on violence. Then I began to write on the painting some sentences related to violence. Afterwards I researched, on internet, quotes on violence. There were some funny ones:

“No violence, gentlemen — no violence, I beg of you! Consider the furniture!”

― Arthur Conan Doyle, The Adventure of the Mazarin Stone

Or this one:

“Violence leads nowhere but to the hospital” Anonymous

Even this one from the beloved book “Jane Eyre” made me smile, although it reminded me of domestic violence:

“Jane! will you hear reason?' (he stooped and approached his lips to my ear) 'because, if you won't, I'll try violence.”

― Charlotte Brontë, Jane Eyre

I wrote quotes on the canvas but they are nearly illegible. Besides me, only you, who read my blog, know what is written on this painting.

There were also good, serious, a little bit obvious quotes. First of all the greeks:

“Violence begets violence” (Eschyle)

" When we can use violence , there is no need for trial. "

“Quand on peut user de violence, il n'est nul besoin de procès.”

Thucydide / La guerre du Péloponèse

And also Martin Luther King: “Civilization and violence are antithetical concepts.”

Then, Genghis Khan was quite surprising. On one hand I found that he said:

“A man's greatest joy is crushing his enemies.”

“The greatest happiness is to vanquish your enemies, to chase them before you, to rob them of their wealth, to see those dear to them bathed in tears, to clasp to your bosom their wives and daughters.”

But he said also: “Violence never settles anything.”

Really Genghis? It at least won you an empire.

And Gandhi, the champion of pacifism was quite surprising too:

“Where there is a choice between cowardice and violence, I would advise violence.”

Then there were the ones that made me stop and think:

“Moderates oppose always moderately to violence”

“Les modérés s’opposent toujours modérément à la violence.”

Anatole France

Quite true! What do you think?

“Violence begets violence. This is why most revolutions were perverted in dictatorships.”

“La violence engendre la violence. C'est pourquoi la plupart des révolutions se sont perverties en dictatures.”

Vaclav Havel De Vaclav Havel / Méditations d'été

I totally agree. Personally I think the french revolution has been overrated, I can’t stand Che Guevara, and we can see today what happened to the Arab spring.

This one gives an explanation why people are so fascinated by monsters ” The sweet violence of imagination comfort somehow from bitter violence of reality. "

“La violence sucrée de l'imaginaire console tant bien que mal de la violence amère du réel.” De Roland Topor

And the great George Orwell: “People sleep peaceably in their beds at night only because rough men stand ready to do violence on their behalf.” Let’s not forget what protect us from anarchy and war.

The last but not least, the gothic Edgar Allan Poe who, by mean of imagination, showed our darkest side: “The fury of a demon instantly possessed me. I knew myself no longer. My original soul seemed, at once, to take its flight from my body; and a more than fiendish malevolence, gin-nurtured, thrilled every fibre of my frame.” ― Edgar Allan Poe, The Black Cat

I really enjoyed this travel in the violence’s realm. I hope you enjoyed it too. It’s not an easy topic but certainly an interesting one. There are many reasons I decided to paint monsters. Stay tuned to know more!

And please, like my Facebook page. It will help me a lot!


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