Assembled Bodies, Objects and Dreams

René Magritte’s The Age of Miracles shows us the organic and mental inner life of an “assembled human”. His entrails are machine parts, and the figure appears to have been pre-punched in the architecture of the space. In The Yellow Boiler, Carl Grossberg lends the industrial vessel with pipes and hoses an almost human appearance, and in doing so he raises the question of to what extent humans designed machines according to their own image. Man Ray’s photograms, which are produced without a camera through the direct contact of objects with photosensitive paper, are another form of such a metamorphosis. The special photographic technique changes the objects’ appearance and turns them into fascinating foreign bodies. The technique
becomes a mysterious realm of transformation, however in which there does not seem to be any room left for an afterlife.

Rudolf Belling
Skulptur 23, 1932
Museum Folkwang
© VG Bild-Kunst, Bonn 2019