Laura Gonzalez

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Today, 7am — 28 Feb 2018

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Aiding and Abetting by Muriel Spark ***** — 26 Feb 2018


Reading dates: 11–22 February 2018

As Hildegard knew from her own experience as a stigmatic fraud, blood, once let loose, gets all over the place. It sticks, it flows, it garishly advertises itself or accumulates in dark thick puddles. Once it gets going, there is o stopping blood.

Dr Hildegard Wolf, a psychotherapist in Paris finds herself with two patients confessing to being Lord Lucan, the English Earl who murdered his nanny, mistaking her for his wife. They blackmail her, as they both discover that, in her past Hildegard was Beate Pappenheim, a fake stigmatic. Anyone who knows me would know that this plot line is 100% written for me and the book did not disappoint. Granted, it does not, perhaps, have the vigour of ‘The Prime of Miss Jean Brodie’ or some of her earlier novels, but ‘Aiding and Abetting’ is still written with all the Sparkian charms I adore. It is very short and to the point, with no plot padding and some resolution (although this is extremely banal, which kind of goes with the premise of the book), the characters are as interesting as human nature is when observed closely and with flair and curiosity. She is my favourite writer, what can I say, and 2018 is her centenary. I have read about 10 of her 22 novels (below, noted with *) and this year seems to be the perfect time to complete the set.

*1. The Comforters
2. Robinson
*3. Memento Mori
*4. The Ballad of Peckham Rye
5. The Bachelors
*6. The Prime of Miss Jean Brodie
*7. The Girls of Slender Means
8. The Mandelbaum Gate
9. The Public Image
*10. The Driver’s Seat
11. Not to Disturb
12. The Hothouse by the East River
13. The Abbess of Crewe
14. The Takeover
15. Territorial Rights
*16. Loitering with Intent
17. The Only Problem
*18. A Far Cry from Kensington
19. Symposium
20. Reality and Dreams
*21. Aiding and Abetting
*22. The Finishing School

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Today, 7am — 23 Feb 2018

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Today, 7am — 21 Feb 2018

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Today, 7am — 19 Feb 2018

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Today, 7am — 16 Feb 2018

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Today, 7am — 14 Feb 2018

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The Thirst by Jo Nesbø**** — 11 Feb 2018

Reading Dates: 03 January – 10 February 2018

This is a crime novel close to how I like them. Plausible, but silly, with breathing space and red herrings. It is not a whodunnit because it is clear from the last book who the bad guy is. The question is how and why he dunnit. I also like my thrillers to have a defining scene, like the concert at the Albert Hall in The Man who Knew Too Much. In The Thirst, that scene is at a disputation, which is the Scandinavian version of a public PhD thesis defence, so imagine how exciting this was for me. There is also a nice lecture on the Othello syndrome where a character, a psychologist, outlines the proposition that what drove him was ambition and not jealousy. I like my crime fiction à la Sade, with philosophical pamphlets. I think this particular Hole book would make a very good film: there is plenty of music chat; ironically, Harry gets to own bar (the Jealousy, a nice call back); the settings vary from the Boiler Room to hospitals, to Police College, to auditoria and Turkish Baths. I am glad this is the last one for now. I seem to have fallen onto a reading rabbit Hole (boom tish) and I need to get on with my plans for the Muriel Spark centenary.

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Today, 7am — 9 Feb 2018

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Today, 7am — 7 Feb 2018

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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.