Wednesday, 24 February 2010

Precision, Precision, Decision?

One of Italo Calvino’s definitions for ‘Exatitude’ is ‘a language as precise as possible both in choice of words and in expression of the subtleties of thought and imagination’. This to Calvino is what literature should be to prevent language being used in a ‘random, approximate, careless manner’. However I disagree due to the fact that this is what happens to me when I read ‘precise’ literature such as Ernest Hemingway:
Personally I read as a form of escapism and enjoy a metaphor and a simile here and there so I can come to my own visual decisions about what I’m seeing behind the text. Literature is experimental and an expression, for me a cap can’t be put on creativity. If every text was ‘precise’ there would be nothing left to explore, the concept of layered meanings and innuendos would be obsolete, and studying and exploring literature in schools would be unnecessary because what would there be to find and discuss? The very essence of the indefinite is what keeps art and literature interesting and alive. I would stare at a painting for longer if I couldn’t quite understand it at a first glance, and the same goes for books I’ve read. The one’s I have revisited are the ones that have baffled me, or that I can take a different interpretation from every time. One of my favourite artists Miss Van is the definition of enticing uncertainty. Her paintings are riddled with small illusions and hidden images which is why I would choose to gaze at her work wide eyed instead of a piece of still life.

1 comment:

  1. Really like your blog. I agree that its important that literature can be interpretated in a number of different ways as thats what makes it personal to you and makes you feel like you can connect with a story. The picture also connects in well, as the interpretations seem limitless with this image.