Bruno DayanWinter’s Tale for Ilva Hetmann and Erin Axtell Flair Italy (2011)

I really like this image.

A big part of my attraction is tied up with perhaps the closest thing I have to a legitimate paraphilia, namely: I get unspeakably aroused by things which press up against the boundaries separating traditional conceptions of the sacred vs the profane.

In this image it’s the Amish inspired wardrobe rubbing up against a quasi-masturbatory sensuality. (I can’t tell if the white on her thighs is her pulling her dress up to reveal knee-high stockings and a swatch of skin–essentially exposing herself to the open window and summer breeze–or if it’s pattern that’s a part of her pants; either way, it’s extremely evocative.)

The other part of it is the art historical resonance. This image immediately aligns with at least three other undisputed masterpieces: the young woman’s expression is a riff on Bernini’s sculpture The Ecstasy of St. Teresa and the view out the window of the scorched grass is obviously intended to invite associations with Wyeth’s painting Christina’s World, as well as Malick’s film Day’s of Heaven.

Also, perusing Dayan’s other work, this project is interesting as it steps well outside his usual pre-Raphaelite sensibilities.

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