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Abject VisionsPowers of Horror in Art and Visual Culture$
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Rina Arya and Nicholas Chare

Print publication date: 2016

Print ISBN-13: 9780719096280

Published to Manchester Scholarship Online: January 2017

DOI: 10.7228/manchester/9780719096280.001.0001

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Manet’s abject Surrealism

Manet’s abject Surrealism

(p.51) 3 Manet’s abject Surrealism
Abject Visions

Nicholas Chare

Manchester University Press

Drawing on the work of Georges Bataille and Julia Kristeva, Nicholas Chare suggests that the Surrealist project possessed an underlying sadistic impulse that was prefigured in the art of Édouard Manet. Manet exploited paint’s potentially aberrant qualities through an aggressive approach to composition and handling. Artworks that exhibit a deviant painterliness often function within Surrealism to question dominant ideas about identity, particularly sexual identity. The abject qualities of Manet’s works prompt such a questioning. Chare contrasts Manet’s technique with that of Jackson Pollock to tease out the nature of the former’s brutal formalism, his Surrealism, and elaborate on its capacity to recast identity without losing sight of the self entirely.

Keywords:   Abjection, Édouard Manet, Jackson Pollock, Clement Greenberg, Georges Bataille, Julia Kristeva, Sadism, Sexual difference, Surrealism

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