Joanne Tod’s Eloquent Enigmas – Francesco Guardiani
Contemporary art is btw two diff cultures: modern and postermodern; typography and electronics
We need the artists to chart the present landscape – healing form the rear-view mirror syndrome, we understand
the future by looking at the present or we begin to realize that the future is a thing of the past.
Joanne Tod enhances our vision on both the unbroken vigor of the law of two.
In the Kitchen (1975): her iconic reservoir is the whole mass-cultural bundle. She took photograph from a
Japanese bondage magazine and put it together with a kitchen. This is called a “psychodrama” – erupting
multiple voices and differences. There is domestic comfort vs. violence, everyday life vs. acrobatic sex, and East
vs. West READ pg 102-103
Decoration Knows No Bounds (1984): two figures at the bottom remind ppl of Piero della Francesca’s flipped
angels decorating his Madonna del Parto. The eloquency of this picture is in the intensity of the gap – the
triangular structure accentruated by the centre to the bottom – whichever angle we take, there is the mysterious
serenity (tranquility) of the smile.
Joanne Tod’s psychodrama – Displaced Identity
o Wyndham Lewis offers insight into the law of two: You must be a duet in everything. For the individual,
the single object, and isolated, is, you must admit, an absurdity. Why try and give the impression of a
consistent and indivisible personality.
Self Portrait (1982): Joanne doesn’t look anything like the woman in the painting. Painting is about the process
of iconic perception. The gap btw 2 persons – subject and object – is provided by the informal writing on the
painting. Despite her portrayal of the theatrical posed, elegantly dressed woman with patrician smile and strong
artificial lighting with background representing Washington D.C., there is a gap – the informal writing at the
bottom, which represents Japanese car (Russell), and so it is High Society vs. subcompact Japanese. Even the
light shawn on the face, making her look pale can reflect the Japanese.
Self Portrait as Prostitute (1983): all the elements of th