Tuesday, May 28, 2013

Hamlet and Ophelia

13052801hamlet-Ophelia-gelatin-print72a
9x12 Mixed Media, gelatin relief monoprint with coloured pencil, and pen
I’ve been picking my way through this one, bits at a time for the past month (or more) using coloured pencils and a blue ball point pen. The gelatin print is MUCH older than that, a Hamlet series using an extremely old gelatin plate and stencils.  I kept putting this one aside as ‘finished, but not quite’. Yesterday I scored a brown ball-point pen!  I’m so excited about that because it was exactly what I needed to add impact to a piece that I just couldn’t quite complete.
And here it is.
For detail views, see it posted on FineArtAmerica.
While I won’t list it as mature, if you look closely enough, it is.  Much like the scenes with Hamlet and Ophelia. Watching the play, and reading it, I never quite understood Ophelia.  Oddly enough, as I worked on this piece, it all came clear. Nothing I can explain in words, which is why I do art.
While I will get around to posting on Etsy, I’m in no hurry.  I don’t think its the sort of thing people are expecting, you know, beautiful tragic Ophelia surrounded by pretty flowers, handsome Hamlet in princely gown contemplating Yorick…
 This is not the usual take on Hamlet and Ophelia, this one delves into the subliminal and subconscious. Read closely, Hamlet is ripe with sexual overtones, and they were overt and crass; it is only the changes of the English language through time that obscures the overt sexuality of their relationship. Ophelia's passions are deep, and were turned against her.
So I listed on Etsy anyway...did not list it as mature...lets see if someone gets me in trouble for that.
HAMLET
Lady, shall I lie in your lap?
Lying down at OPHELIA's feet
OPHELIA
No, my lord.
HAMLET
I mean, my head upon your lap?
OPHELIA
Ay, my lord.
HAMLET
Do you think I meant country matters?
OPHELIA
I think nothing, my lord.
HAMLET
That's a fair thought to lie between maids' legs.
OPHELIA
What is, my lord?
HAMLET
Nothing.
***
OPHELIA
[Sings.]
"By Gis and by Saint Charity,
Alack, and fie for shame!
Young men will do't, if they come to't;
By cock, they are to blame.
Quoth she, 'Before you tumbled me,
You promised me to wed.'

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