Thursday, August 6, 2015

Ana Hatherly

Ana Alves aka Ana Hatherly. Photo undated and uncredited.

Another artist in The Crib's pantheon died yesterday: Ana Hatherly. I wrote about her work (which I included in the expanded field of comics) here and here.

Today I just want to post part of Ana Hatherly's introduction to her TV show Obrigatório Não Ver [forbidden to watch] aired October 22, 1978, in Portugal's public TV, RTP [Portuguese Radio and Television]. What Ana Hatherly calls "vanguard art" we call today "contemporary art" (my translation):
Good evening dear viewers: this show is titled Obrigatório Não Ver. Said title, given by Jorge Listopad, who is at the head of the RTP's Department of Cultural Programming, was dubbed by the press as one of the most unfortunate in the current programming.
I would agree with this opinion if this wasn't, as it is, a show about vanguard art. What happens is that this title, deliberately or not, illustrates a more or less generalized attitude of the public towards vanguard art. An attitude that is founded in the ignorance of what is refused and self-indulgently based on the law of the lesser effort, because any knowledge, any new knowledge, demands a will to learn and, above all, persistence and effort.
This effort, in the field of the arts, is particularly real in vanguard art's case because of its excessive nowness. I mean, because the vanguard implies an immediate experience of our time's reality it doesn't allow the less trained the retreat that, for instance, the art of other times permits.
This is just one aspect - because there are others - but it allows us to mention what, in part unintentionally, the title of this show suggests: I mean, that what's nearer is what's more difficult to see, or, in other words, that nothing is more difficult to see than what's constantly in front of us.
Add to that a huge bias and apply the above words to the situation of the art form of comics.  (And I mean "the art form", not "the entertainment industry.")


Luís Alves de Matos, Ana Hatherly - The Intelligent Hand (trailer), 2002.

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