On Pool of Tears 2 (after Lewis Carol), 2000, Kiki Smith, etching, aquatint, drypoint, and sandage with watercolor additions

kiki.jpg

she’s in a pink dress /hairbow swimming or placed in a uniform

ocean. The Look in her face / eyes is one of the inapproximate,
Behind her is a pack of animals, mostly birds–mallard monkey capybara swan,
owl cranes and harpy eagle, a dodo–

all either chasing or following her –its ambiguous– and all of them staring back at you with their own cloudy starings and just
like her face, its unreadable, and going back to her face you can’t read
fear or any Seat of Leading

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and there is one exception to this multiplicity of intentgazings to the audience
(the viewer): maybe its a howler monkey….a sad limpid wrist hanging out of the water… But this one, alone of its company (including our young Alice), is not staring
so unnervingly strait back at Us. at least that could make sense, you know like
as if this strange passage of Alice And Her Animals were caught mid-sea
and staring for something like reasons.
Because at first glance you’re almost reminded of some
paparazzi catching a train of aliens caught in awkard tresspass.
But there is this howler monkey and of all of these not-blank unreadable faces,
his alone speaks of emotion that can at least be read as some degree or expression of sadness and his eyes carry up and over    above the shoulder of
Uncodable Alice somewhere beyond wonderland where the long-gone dodo stares
just the same as all the rest of them back at us and there springs
dsc01059.jpga relation to this melancholy monkey who, alone
of his companions, looks Into the picture like us
and is sad for it, and i found myself looking
sadly into the picture         before wading off towards others
whose dimensions do not multiply my own quiet disconcertions

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Filed under Alice in Wonderland, art, Lewis Carol, MoMA, Uncategorized

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