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Miroslav Petříček

The Unconscious in Painting

In Štyrský's writings there is an evident attempt to find an adequate definition of the artificielist painting, but for the most part they are formulations that depend on a negative definition of artificielism against surrealism. It is only indirectly apparent that artificielist art abandons the theoretical position associated with the idea of representation (which still plays a certain role in surrealism thanks to its inspiration in Freud and the psychoanalytical understanding of the relation between the manifest and the latent). Artificielism is of course remarkable precisely because its concept of the image de facto operates with an entirely different "ontology of the image", incommensurable with the traditional idea of representation. That implicit ontology of the image is however very similar to the one suggested by Michel Foucault in his analysis of Magritte, or put forward by Georges Didi-Huberman in his polemic with iconology. The image does not represent, but is the "event" of visibility.

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