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27 APRIL 2013

Factory, a Pictorial Epoch of Technology by Jakob Tuggener

"Fabrik – Ein Bildepos der Technik von Jakob Tuggener, (Factory – a Pictorial Epoch of Technology by Jakob Tuggener, 1943). An unusual sequence contrasts lathes, melting furnaces, turbines and generators with single portraits of workers; the sharp contours of a carved wooden mask or the natural resources of industrial energy such as sluices and waterfalls. These images may be reminiscent of Rodchenko, but they never seem apologetic or nostalgic about technological progress. The book is rich in formal references, while numerous little stories form pictorial narratives. These include, for example, an almost cinematic sequence of a young woman called Berti, who, with blueprints under her arm, rushes along beside a high brick façade before vanishing through a metal door. The camera constantly shifts between Berti's face and the scenes that surround her.

Unlike many of his more politically motivated colleagues such as Paul Senn, who concentrated on the world of workers and farmers, Tuggener took many photographs of the wealthy. During the 40s, with almost post–Modern enjoyment, he joined the rich and beautiful at their balls held in the Hotel Palace in St Moritz, a place where war–profiteers met in the unreal quiet of the Swiss mountains. Tuggener created a series of trance–like photographs, which look like film stills, depicting sparkling crystal glasses, heavy silver cutlery and chandeliers; bare shoulders and low–cut back décolletages juxtaposed with a plate of German sausages shining with grease; the exchange of flirtatious glances and brief hand contacts. He also took superb images of fetishistic details, such as an ornamented room key, ambiguously held by slender fingers in a black velvet glove. It is these minimal details which hint at the complex stories which lie at the heart of Tuggener's oeuvre."

(Hans Rudolf Reust: Translated by Imke Werner, 2000 Issue 53 June–August 2000, Frieze)

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TAGS

1940s1943Alexander Rodchenko • Berti • brick wall • chandelierscinematic sequence • complex stories • decolletage • documentary photographer • Ein Bildepos der Technik • expressionist aesthetic • Fabrik • facadefactory • fetishistic details • film stills • flirtatious glances • Frieze (magazine) • history of photography • industrial energy • Jakob Tuggener • Paul Senn • photographic portrait • Pictorial Epoch of Technology • pictorial narrative • rich and beautiful • St Moritz • Swisstechnological progress • war-profiteer • wealthy • worker

CONTRIBUTOR

Simon Perkins
13 MARCH 2012

Jean Cocteau: la Belle et la Bête

"La lumière brillante et surnaturelle qui avait dominé toute la scène du château (flamme des chandeliers, feu, reflets étincelants de l'argenterie) s'estompe pour laisser la place à la lumière naturelle du jour [plan 9] [9]. Ces rayons lumineux rappellent ceux des dernières gravures de la Belle au vois dormant. D'autant plus que cette lumière naturelle n'est pas légitimée par la présence d'une fenêtre, comme c'est le cas chez Doré. C'est une lumière naturelle, la lumière du jour, mais elle semble toujours éclairer le personnage de manière surnaturelle : comment la lumière extérieure peut–elle pénétrer à l'intérieur sans la présence d'aucune fenêtre ? Les flambeaux s'éteignent un à un, le personnage traverse un grand pan de lumière blanche, la porte se referme toute seule, l'escalier apparaît en plongée : la scène semble se rejouer à l'envers, ce qui souligne la structure circulaire et la clôture de la séquence, mais aussi l'influence de l'œuvre de Gustave Doré. Le dialogue des contes et des illustrations se poursuit jusqu'à la dernière image de la séquence puisqu'elle se termine sur les ronces qui envahissent l'escalier du château de la Bête, comme celles qui envahissent les gravures du château de la Belle au bois dormant."

(Estelle Plaisant Soler, 26 juin 2006)

Fig.1 Jean Cocteau (1946). "la Belle et la Bête"

2). PDF of 100 Cult Films (Screen Guides).

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TAGS

1946atmosphericbeastbeauty • candlebra • candlestick • caryatids • castlechandelierscostume design • daylight • eerie • enchanted garden • engraving • external light • externalisation • extinguished • fairy talefantasyfilmfilm designfireflameFrenchgloveGustave Dorehorse • iconogaphy • in the mindinterior spaceJean CocteauJean Marais • Josette Day • Jungian • key • La Belle et la Bete • light • living arms • Madame Leprince de Beaumont • magic • merchant • metaphormotion picturemyth • natural light • Prince Charmingrealityset design • silverware • Sleeping Beauty • smoke-breathing • sparkling reflections • spatial symbolismspecial effectsstaircasestory • supernatural • surrealismsymbolismtalismantheatrical space • torch • visual designvisual metaphorvisual spectacle • white light

CONTRIBUTOR

Simon Perkins
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