Sunday, September 21, 2008

aby warburg's little soul animals...

seelentierchen in neuchatel

"he practices a cult with the moths and butterflies that fly into his room at night. he speaks to them for hours. he calls them his little soul animals [seelentierchen] and tells them about his suffering..."

"the most beautiful butterfly i have ever pinned down suddenly bursts through the glass and dances mockingly upwards into the blue air... now i should catch it again, but i am not equipped for this kind of locomotion. or to be exact, i should like to, but my intellectual training does not permit me to do so... i should like, at the approach of our lightfooted girl, joyfully to whirl away with her, but such soaring movements are not for me."

two quotes from aby warburg and the image in motion, by phillipe-alain michaud, the first from aby's time in bellevue due to melancholic depresion circa 1920 and probably an account of a doctor; the second from a letter by warburg. photo of 'seelentierchen neuchatel' from my iphone.

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