Painting Continuity inspired by Continuidad de los parques by Julio Cortazar
A painting inspired by Continuidad de los parques by Julio Cortazar
I read this story several years ago and it has remained with me. This painting is inspired by it. The original story can be found here, in Spanish.
I love the way the story wraps around on itself. It is a story of passion, love, deceit, and murder that takes place in a few paragraphs. It’s a simple story but one of the most cleaver works that I have read in a long time. In my painting the red oval represents the continuity while the center represents the main character, the green line both the chair in which he sits as well as the knife used by the lover.
I’ve translated the story into English below…
Continuity of the Parks by Julio Corazar, translated by MFCarter.
Having started to read the novel a few days before, he had to put it down for some urgent business before returning to open it and begin reading it again on the train on the way to the farmstead; he allowed himself a growing interest in the plot and the characterizations. That evening, after writing a letter to his attorney and discussing with his steward a question over the sharecroppers he returned to the book in the tranquility of his study that looked out upon the park and it’s oaks. Sitting back comfortably in his favorite armchair with his back towards the door where even the thought of an intrusion would irritate him, he allowed his left had to caress repeatedly the green velvet of his chair as he read the last chapters. He remembered effortlessly the names and the images of the protagonists; the novel spread its glamor over him at once. He enjoyed the almost perverse pleasure of disengaging himself line by line from all the things around him with his head relaxing comfortably against the velvet of his high-backed chair and the cigarettes resting within reach of his hand, while beyond his windows the air of the afternoon danced beneath the oaks. Word by word, absorbed by the sordid and distinctive dilemma of the heroes, he abandoned himself to their images to the point where they acquired color and movement, he witnessed their last encounter in the hillside cabin. The woman arrived first, apprehensive; then the lover came, his face cut by a backlash of a branch. Admirably, she stanched the blood with her kisses, but he rebuffed her caresses, he had not come to repeat the ceremonies of a secret passion, protected by a world of dry leaves and furtive paths. The dagger warmed itself against his chest, and below beat liberty, crouching. Eager dialogue raced down the pages like a rivulet of snakes, and one felt that everything had been decided from eternity. Even the caresses that entangled the lover’s body wishing to keep him there, to dissuade him from it; sketched abominably the frame of another body which was necessary for them to destroy. Nothing had been forgotten: alibis, hazards, possible mistakes. From this hour, each moment had its detail minutely assigned. The examination and re-examination of the details was interrupted so that a ruthless hand could caress a cheek. It was beginning to get dark.
Without looking now, each rigidly fixed to the task which awaited them, they parted at the door of the cabin. She was to follow the trail that went north. On the path that lead in the opposite direction, he turned for a moment to see her running, her hair loosened and flying. He ran in turn, crouching in the trees and hedges, trying to distinguish in the mauve haze of twilight the walkway leading to the house. The dogs should not bark and they didn’t. The steward would not be there at that hour, and he was not. He climbed the three steps to the porch and went inside. Over the thudding of the blood in his ears came the woman’s words, first the blue room, then a gallery, then a carpeted stairway. At the top, two doors. No one in the first room, no one in the second. The door of the salon, and then with the dagger in his hand, the light of the windows, the high back of a green velvet chair, the head of the man in the chair reading a novel.
The painting, Continuity is available for sale.
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