Monday, January 25, 2010

Love Me by Philip Kreyche, Blue Theatre, January 18, 23, 27, 30

The title of Philip Kreyche's Love Me is deceptively simple. As playwright and principal actor he takes on German expressionism, focusing on the Austrian painter Oskar Kokoschka in the period 1918-1919, when the painter was known among his circle of bohemians in Dresden simply as "mad Kokoschka."

Renowned as an artist of dark and powerful brushwork and a writer of equally dark, sex-obsessed essays and narratives, in 1912 Kokoshka became involved with Alma Mahler, whose husband had just died. The painting at the left, Two Nudes (1913), is Oskar's vision of them together. The affair burned out by 1914, partly due to his possessiveness. Kokoschka enlisted in the cavalry, mostly to escape her, and in Galicia suffered a gunshot wound to the head and a bayonet wound to the side. He convalesced and returned to his art, employed as an art instructor. In 1919 he commissioned an anatomically correct life-sized female dummy, a purchase that caused a scandal when he published his correspondence with the manufacturer.

Read more and view images at . . . .

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