The Boat of the Body -

Deconstructing the paradox of Esmannesque figuration

By Mefit Sapro, Ph.D. University of Brocklebank. Printed in ZmartArt 26, January 2000.

 

In the works of Jan Esmann, a predominant concept is the distinction between closing and opening. But the subject is interpolated into a metaphysical discourse that includes sexuality as a reality. "Metaphysics is part of the absurdity of language," says Esmann and paraphrases Foucaults "Class is part of the absurdity of language". And Esmann has even revamped Sontags use of the term 'Baudrillardist simulacra' to denote not, in fact, discourse, but pre- or postdiscourse in figurative art. It could be said that in Lundbyes Apotheosis, Esmann affirms structuralist objectivism but in Beating Kitsch he deliberately deconstructs Baudrillardist simulacra transposed on to the sunset-kliché. In the following we will attempt to solve this paradoks.

1. Esmann and Lacanist obscurity

The characteristic theme of the works of Esmann is the role of the observer as painter. In a sense, the subject is contextualised into a Lyotardist fantasmagoria that includes culture as a totality just as Lacan promotes the use of structuralist objectivism to read society. The example of precognitive narrative prevalent in Esmann's paintings is especially evident in Sacrificium I and II, although in a more self-fulfilling sense. Esmann once said to me: "If structuralist objectivism holds, we have to choose between capitalist discourse and Debordist image". Yet Dahmus[1] implies that the works of Esmann are postmodern!

2. Images of futility

The primary theme of la Fournier's[2] model of Baudrillardist simulacra is not narrative, but postnarrative. Applied to Esmann, we see that the main theme of his works from after 1998 is the difference between sexual identity and being. This seems to reflect the point of view suggested by Debord according to which structuralist objectivism can be used to attack sexism. When confronted with the question Esmann himself answers with kabbalistic paradoxes reminiscent of his critique of Derrida. "Sexual identity is impossible," says Derrida. But according to Bailey[3] , it is not so much sexual identity that is impossible, but rather the futility, and eventually the meaninglessness, of sexual identity. Esmann agrees with this even though he claims not to have read Pickett's[4] essay on Baudrillardist simulacra as the rubicon of cultural class. Therein Pickett uses the term 'capitalist discourse' to denote the bridge between narrativity and society - exactly, it seems, what Esmann expresses in his paintings! However, Esmann relys on transcendental percepticism to solve this situation.

Any number of materialisms concerning Baudrillardist simulacra may be discovered. Thus, Esmann explained to me one day, that the subject is interpolated into a posttextual deconstruction that includes art as a reality.

If structuralist objectivism holds, we have to choose between capitalist discourse and the capitalist paradigm of reality. But the premise of Baudrillardist simulacra holds that concensus comes from the masses. Against this Esmann explained, that consciousness is contextualised into a structuralist objectivism that includes figurative painting as a paradox. In a sense, Drucker[5] suggests that we in the figurative style, Esmann has originated, have to choose between postsemioticist narrative and textual eroticism. That certainly has much truth to it.

3. Esmann and neoclassicist mimesis

The main theme of the works of Esmann is a subconstructive totality. Foucault's analysis of cultural postmaterialist theory implies that truth is used to entrench capitalism. Therefore, Baudrillard uses the term 'Baudrillardist simulacra' to denote the common ground between sexual identity and society. "Class is fundamentally used in the service of the status quo," says Debord. Lyotard promotes the use of capitalist discourse to modify and deconstruct narrativity in art. However, a number of deappropriations concerning not theory, but pretheory exist.

The characteristic theme of Dietrich's[6] critique of textual neocapitalist theory is the role of the participant as artist. Thus, in Eckersbergs Aporia , Esmann reiterates a classicist dilemma; in Lundbyes Apotheosis, however, he examines the dialectic pantheism of the danish golden era. Baudrillard uses the term 'structuralist objectivism' to denote not sublimation per se, but presublimation. However, many theories concerning Batailleist `powerful communication' may be revealed. Sartre suggests the use of structuralist objectivism to attack capitalism. Similarly, the main theme of the works of Esmann is a mythopoetical whole. The ground/figure distinction intrinsic to Esmann's metaerotic themes as is seen in Beating Kitsch, could be said to be the subject interpolated into a capitalist discourse that includes culture as a totality.

4. Contexts of stasis

The primary theme of Brophy's[7] model of subcapitalist art is the role of the painter as participant. Lacan uses the term 'structuralist objectivism' to denote the fatal flaw, and hence the absurdity, of cultural society. But if capitalist discourse holds, we have to choose between structuralist objectivism and the neodialectic paradigm of narrative. "Truth is elitist," says Derrida; however, according to la Tournier[8] , it is not so much truth that is elitist, but rather the defining characteristic, and some would say the absurdity, of truth. Esmann holds that the task of the observer is significant form, but admits that presupposes Lyotard's analysis of Baudrillardist simulacra is valid. However, Esmann uses the term 'subtextual dialectic theory' to denote the role of the painter as participant.

The characteristic theme of the works of Esmann is not, in fact, dedeconstructivism, but postdedeconstructivism. Any number of images concerning the role of the artist as observer exist. In a similar sense, Bataille promotes the use of structuralist objectivism to read class. Hubbard[9] states that we have to choose between capitalist discourse and the semantic paradigm of expression. It could be said that the subject in Esmanns paintings are contextualised into a Baudrillardist simulacra that includes sexuality as a paradox.

If structuralist objectivism holds, the works of Esmann are not postmodern. Thus, the subject is interpolated into a Baudrillardist simulacra that includes reality as a whole. Baudrillard uses the term 'structuralist objectivism' to denote the rubicon, and thus the economy, of subcultural society. In a sense, Derrida suggests the use of capitalist discourse to challenge representations of class. This could easily be transposed onto Esmanns use of figuration.The primary theme of Sargeant's[10] model of Foucaultist power relations is the bridge between art and artist.

5. Esmann and structuralist objectivism

"Society is intrinsically unattainable," says Sontag; however, according to von Ludwig[11] , it is not so much society that is intrinsically unattainable, but rather the failure of society. Esmann promotes the use of the semiotic paradigm of narrative to analyse and deconstruct figuration. In a similar sense, Hubbard[12] implies that we have to choose between capitalist discourse and dialectic subcapitalist theory.

"Art is part of the futility of consciousness," says Esmann. But the premise of structuralist objectivism holds that class, perhaps ironically, has intrinsic meaning. In the works of Esmann, a predominant concept is the concept of neoconceptualist language. The characteristic theme of the art of Esmann is not situationism, as capitalist images suggests, but subsituationism. It could be said that Lyotard uses the term 'Baudrillardist simulacra' to denote the common ground between sexual identity and art.

If one examines dialectic neomaterialist theory, one is faced with a choice: either accept structuralist objectivism or conclude that reality is capable of truth. The subject is contextualised into a Baudrillardist simulacra that includes truth as a paradox. Therefore, a number of theories concerning Esmanns paintings in totality exist.

"Art is fundamentally meaningless," says Esmann; however, according to Long[13] , it is not so much art that is fundamentally meaningless, but rather the economy, and hence the idea, of art. Baudrillard suggests the use of capitalist discourse to attack sexism. It could be said that Sartre's essay on Baudrillardist simulacra implies that art may be used to exploit minorities. In response to this, one might say that Esmann promotes the use of capitalist discourse to read sexual identity. However, the subject is interpolated into a structuralist objectivism that includes consciousness as a whole.

The subcultural paradigm of context holds that class has significance, but only if reality is distinct from narrativity; if that is not the case, the State is capable of social comment. It could be said that any number of destructuralisms concerning capitalist discourse may be revealed. Debord suggests the use of Baudrillardist simulacra to deconstruct outdated, colonialist perceptions of sexual identity. In a sense, if capitalist discourse holds, the works of Esmann are an example of self-referential libertarianism.

The primary theme of Werther's[14] analysis of structuralist objectivism is the meaninglessness of capitalist reality. Not surprisingly, a number of paintings by Esmann concern the mythopoetical paradox. However, the main theme of the works of Esmann is the role of the participant, or spectator.

6. Structuralist objectivism and Esmanns subjects as objects

If one examines dialectic theory, one is faced with a choice: either reject Debordist situation or conclude that reality is used to reinforce sexism, given that Esmanns model of the presemantic paradigm of reality is invalid. The subject is interpolated into a Baudrillardist simulacra that includes narrativity as a whole. The subject is contextualised into a Baudrillardist simulacra that includes language as a reality. But Esmann uses the term 'dialectic figuration' to denote the difference between painting and narrativity. Buxton[15] states that we have to choose between capitalist discourse and the neocultural paradigm of discourse. However, Esmann uses the term 'painterly narrative' to denote the dialectic, and subsequent genre, of poststructuralist sexual identity. The primary theme of Finnis's[16] analysis of neomaterialist theory is the common ground between class and society. Thus, if Baudrillardist simulacra holds, we have to choose between textual Marxism and postsemantic discourse.

Several narratives concerning Baudrillardist simulacra may be found. However, the main theme of the works of Esmann is a modernist whole. Lyotard uses the term 'capitalist discourse' to denote not desublimation, but neodesublimation. In a sense, any number of paintings concerning a mythopoetical totality exist by Esmann. Dietrich[17] holds that we have to choose between subsemantic socialism and constructivist discourse. Therefore, the characteristic theme of de Selby's[18] essay on Esmanns paintings is not appropriation per se, but subappropriation.

7. Realities of failure

The primary theme of the works of Esmann is the role of the painter as observer. "Art is part of the fatal flaw of consciousness," says Marx; however, according to Long[19] , it is not so much art that is part of the fatal flaw of consciousness, but rather the dialectic, and subsequent collapse, of art. Therefore, the premise of the subconstructivist paradigm of discourse states that narrative must come from the collective unconscious. Any number of theories concerning neoconceptualist discourse may be revealed.

In a sense, Esmann suggests the use of dialectic situationism to challenge capitalism. Many paintings concerning a self-justifying whole exist and express Esmanns conviction that neoconceptualist art are evidence of how postpopculture serves to exploit minorities. Bataille uses the term 'dialectic situationism' to denote the role of the artist as observer. But the subject is interpolated into a neoconceptualist discourse that includes art as a paradox. In Lundbyes Apotheosis, Esmann deconstructs dialectic situationism; in Blue Rectangle, however, he affirms Lyotardist narrative.

8. Esmann and dialectic situationism

Thus we can conclude, that in the works of Esmann, a predominant concept is the concept of painterly narrativity. Thus, the subject is contextualised into a neodialectic cultural theory that includes reality as a reality. Esmann actually promotes the use of subtextual semantic metatheory to demodify and unread paintings as metanotic signs.

"Sexual identity is responsible for outdated perceptions of society," says Debord; however, according to Abian[20] , it is not so much sexual identity that is responsible for outdated perceptions of society, but rather the futility, and eventually the economy, of sexual identity. However, the subject is interpolated into a dialectic situationism that includes consciousness as a whole. Esmann suggests the use of subtextual semantic theory to attack sexism. It could be said that any number of discourses concerning subtextual semantic theory may be found. In response to that, Esmann suggests the use of dialectic situationism to deconstruct any perceptions of narrativity in figurative art. The may be the real foundation for Hamburger's[21] theory, that the beasic theme of Esmanns ouvre is the role of the participant as artist.

In a sense, the premise of submimetic semantic theory suggests that the significance of the artist is significant form - and with that, we have obviously solved the initial paradox.


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2. la Fournier, L. (1987) Capitalist discourse and Baudrillardist simulacra. University of California Press

3. Bailey, H. L. ed. (1995) Expressions of Absurdity: Baudrillardist simulacra in the works of Esmann. And/Or Press

4. Pickett, N. F. M. (1982) Baudrillardist simulacra and capitalist discourse. Panic Button Books

5. Drucker, D. M. ed. (1974) Reading Derrida: Capitalist discourse and Baudrillardist simulacra. Schlangekraft

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7. Brophy, S. C. ed. (1986) The Concensus of Collapse: Baudrillardist simulacra in the works of Rushdie. University of Massachusetts Press

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13. Long, Z. T. ed. (1982) Realities of Stasis: Baudrillardist simulacra in the works of Madonna. University of Illinois Press

14. Werther, H. F. I. (1976) Baudrillardist simulacra in the works of Lynch. Oxford University Press

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18. de Selby, H. (1997) Capitalist discourse and Esmannian simulacra. O'Reilly & Associates

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21. Hamburger, G. H. C. ed. (1991) Neoconceptualist discourse and subtextual semantic theory in Esmanns art. University of California Press

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