Laura Gonzalez


Principles of seduction — 22 Jun 2007

cushion 1cushion 2

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Coin de chasteté — 10 Jun 2007

And since I am thinking about Surrealism (having just read the excellent catalogue accompanying the V&A’s Surreal Things exhibition; having just posted about Surrealist shoes…), I can’t help but share with you my favourite seductive artwork, my screw. A postcard of this object is what I turn to when I am lost, when I ask myself “why, why, why? why do this, why study something so elusive?”. Like Object a, Duchamp’s Coin de chastet?� is my object of desire and my object of anxiety, all in one. As things go, it doesn’t quite fit into my PhD, even though it is MY object of seduction. Maybe it’s because. So much to say about it, yet so simple. One can think about masculinity and femininity; about opposites working side by side (like in the unconscious); violence and harm… A previous version of this object was given as a wedding present for his second wife. Coin de chastet?� is related to, but quite distinct from other Duchamp pieces such as Female Fig Leaf.

Marcel Duchamp, Wedge of Chastity (Coin de chastet?�) 1954, cast 1963. Tate Collection

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Shoe art (part II: Surrealism) — 10 Jun 2007

Meret Oppenheim, Ma Gouvernante, 1936, Moderna Museet Collection, Sweden

Salvador Dali, Surrealist Object Functioning Symbolically, 1974, Teatre-Museu Dali

Elsa Schiaparelli, Shoe hat, (collaboration with Salvador Dal??), 1937-38, The Metropolitan Museum of Art.

Elsa Schiaparelli, Monkey Fur Shoes, 1938.

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About Me

I am an artist and writer. My recent practice performance, film, dance, photography and text, and my work has been performed, exhibited and published in many venues in Europe and the US. I have spoken at numerous conferences and events, including the Museum for the Fashion Institute of Technology in New York, the Medical Museum in Copenhagen, College Arts Association and the Association for the Psychoanalysis of Culture and Society. When I am not following Freud, Lacan and Marx’s footsteps with my camera or creating performance works as part of my Athenaeum Research Fellowship at the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland, I teach postgraduate students at Transart Institute.

I am currently immersed in an interdisciplinary project exploring knowledge and the body of the hysteric. In 2013, together with Child and Adolescent Mental Health practitioner Frances Davies, I co-edited the book ‘Madness, Women and the Power of Art’, to which I contributed a work authored with Eleanor Bowen. My book ‘Make Me Yours: How Art Seduces’ was published by Cambridge Scholars in 2016. In this text, investigates psychoanalytic approaches to making and understanding objects of seduction, including an examination of parallels between artistic and analytic practices, a study of Manolo Blahnik’s shoes as objects of desire, a disturbing encounter with Marcel Duchamp’s last work, and the creation of a psychoanalytically inspired Discourse of the Artefact, a framework enabling the circulation of questions and answers through a relational approach to artworks.