1. The Narrative - introductory lecture notes
"The narratives of the world are numberless. Narrative is first
and foremost a prodigious variety of genres, themselves distributed
amongst different substances - as though any material were fit to receive
man's stories. Able to be carried by articulated language, spoken or
written, fixed or moving images, gestures and the ordered mixtures of
all these substances ; narrative is present in myth, legend, fable,
tale, novella, epic, history, tragedy, drama, comedy, mime, painting
(think of Carpaccio's Saint Ursula), stained glass windows, cinema,
comics, news item, conversation. Moreover, under this almost infinite
diversity of forms, narrative is present in every age, in every place,
in every society; it begins with the very history of mankind and there
nowhere is nor has been a people without narrative. All classes, all
human groups, have their narratives, enjoyment of which is very often
shared by men with different, even opposing, backgrounds. Caring nothing
for the division between good and bad literature, narrative is international,
transhistorical, transcultural; it is simply there like life itself."
Roland Barthes, from Image- Music- Text ,
Introduction to the Structural Analyses of Narratives.
2. Looking hard at a Photograph ...
This is a Jerry Cooke photograph for an article on Nabisco (National
Biscuit Company) Fortune magazine June 1948
Walker Evans writes,
"The picture is quiet and true. Since I am writing about photography
let me point out that this picture is a better part of the story at
hand than either a drawing or a painting would be. There is a profitable
and well-run cracker firm in a sweaty part of the town, there is a knot
of men talking on the pavement about anything but crackers, amidst the
irrelevant trucks. This is where Mal-o-Mars are cooked and this is where
last week's newspaper meets the gutter too. And the Strand Hotel becomes
famous for flavour. My point is Fortune photographs should take a long
look at a subject, get into it, and without shouting, tell a lot about
it." to R.D. Paine, 23.7.48 (Walker Evans at Work).
3. Looking hard at a Painting :
Jared French State Park 1946, tempera 26" x 26"
- speculate what narrative will unfold after the stroke of noon.
4. Direction and the Narrative and the Untrustworthy Author
Movement Left to Right; Image d'Epinal, Degres des Ages , c1850 popular
French print here is an exercise in comparison for you.
The False Ending; Lawrence Sterne The Life and Adventures of
Tristram Shandy ; the death page and the false ending
see lecture on Sterne
the Pauper's Bible , the West Front of the French Gothic Cathedral.
Ways of Reading; Notre Dame de Paris, 8 panels devoted to the life of
students. (departure for Paris, the Bishop's Court, punishment on the
ladder, sanctuary., collection of titles, artisans, studying, lecture.
see Kraus, The Living Theatre of Mediaeval Art , Thames
and Hudson L 1967)
7. Pairs and Cross References Bible Moralisé, Christ's Miracles
of Healing (cf stained glass) c1240 vertical reading and in pairs.395
x 275mm BM London; Bible Moralisé de Jean Le Bon c1350, parallel
scenes, two sorts of frames, architectural and polylobe.
Belleville Breviary , c1350, 2 vols, winter and summer divine office,
the Calendar page, the Old Testament and the New, prophet and apostle,
Zachariah and Matthew, December .The text begins as a prophesy and re-appears
as an Article of Faith.The bricks of the Synagogue over the year's volume
conclude in collapse.
The Missal of S.Denis, Miracle of the Leprous Pilgrim c1350 BM London
233 x 164 mm
Hours of Jeanne D'Evreux , by Jean Pucelle
8. Narrative Alternatives
Garden as Narrative ;
Wilton and Stowe (Temple of the Worthies)
The Building as Narrative ;
The Neo-Platonic Staircase at Saragossa University.
From Right to Left, BOUSTROPHEDONIC
THE MAYAN CODEX AS SEQUENCE- "OLD STRIPE EYE"
BOOKLIST for STRIPE EYE
Diaz and Rodgers; The Codex Borgia; A Full Colour Restoration
of the Ancinet Mexican manuscript; Dover NY 1993.
Zelia Nuttal, The Codex Nuttal, A Picture Manuscript from Ancient
Mexico,Dover NY 1975
F.Anders, Codex Tro-Cortesianus ,Phaidon London 1967
S.D.Houston, Reading the Past; Maya Glyphs, British
Museum Publications, London 1979
Katz, Ancient American Civilisations ,Weidenfeld and
Nicholson London 1989; the best study of the Meso-American civilisation
before the Spanish invasion.
John Hemming, The Conquest of the Incas, Macmillan
London 1970, the standard work on the decimation of Indian culture.
James and Oliver Tickell, City of the Maya, Tauris
Parke London 1991; excellent tourist orientated study of monuments and
Marilyn Bridges, Sacred and the Secular, A Decade of Aerial
Photography , ICP NY 1990; photographs of the buildings from
Jay A.Levenson, Circa 1492, Art in the Age of Exploration ,
National Gallery of Art,Washington Yale Univ.Press, 1991; see III "The
Americas; The Aztec Empire -Realm of the Smoking Mirror"; and "The
Aztec Gods How Many ?"