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04 February 2017 @ 12:00 am
PS to 'Lost in Translation' – echoes of late 15C art  
Re: Claude's injuries, I think there's an element of Hugo deliberately reflecting the macabre nature of late 15C religious art. The novel is deeply saturated in the art and architecture of its setting and nothing was more characteristic of the era (post-Black Death Western Europe) than the devotional cults of the Wounds of Christ and Corpus Christi. Indeed, a very useful book on this period even draws on this for its title and core motif: Charles F. Briggs, The Body Broken: Medieval Europe 1300-1520 (2011). Devotional images wallowed in bloody detail:In his personal spiritual and sexual torment, Hugo's self-mutilating young priest is writing on his own body a version of the Imitatio Christi
Current Location: The North Tower
Current Mood: creative
Current Music: The Waterboys, 'A Pagan Place'
clematisvineclematisvine on February 6th, 2017 02:25 am (UTC)
Hi there, Doc M - I could not agree more with your assessment of Hugo's intentions with the nature of Claude's wounds. They're so profoundly important to his character that I find myself perpetually frustrated when adaptations either gloss over them or leave them out entirely (usually the latter).

I thought you'd be interested to see this beautiful artwork I commissioned from Aleks years ago - I even mentioned Giambono's piece as a reference back then; I had a great desire to see Claude represented in the style of one of these bloody, devotional 'saint' or 'Man of Sorrows' depictions. I have this piece printed out as a large poster-size.

(Btw, any plans to finish that fanfic?)

silverwhistle: Claude b/wsilverwhistle on February 6th, 2017 09:07 am (UTC)
That is gorgeous! Poor boy…

(I have a lifelong weakness for h/c, so always wanted to tend him and nurse him back to health.)

Yes, I'm planning to return to the fic. My return to the fandom is very much tied in with refreshing my reading in preparation for that. Claude's room in the North Tower and his house in the Cloister are my own "sanctuary" when the real world becomes unbearable.

My own portrait of Claude is here. The composition is based on Rogier van der Weyden's Philippe de Croy; the inscription, from Villon's Ballade des Dames du Temps Jadis, refers in the original to Pierre Abelard, so I thought was appropriate…

I'm inclined to think that this gets glossed over in many adaptations because he's been turned into a cheap melodrama villain in many of them, instead of the tormented tragic hero as which he's written. As a result, we're not "allowed" to see his vulnerability in its most obvious form, because the writers of these adaptations don't want us to feel any tenderness towards him. Whereas, when you read the book, it's utterly heartbreaking that this brilliant young man has been reduced to this…

Edited at 2017-02-06 10:49 am (UTC)