Magrittean disavowals

from 7/19/12 “Magritte”: a Bizarro with “Surrealist painter Rene Magritte [holding a This is not a pipe sign] and his brother, Surrealist plumber, Rodrigo [holding a length of pipe]”; the famous painting “The Betrayal of Images”; the parody Ceci n’est pas une peep; Magritte Ceci n’est pas une pomme

from 3/11/15 “Magritte goes on”: a Zippy with This is not a pipe / This is not a pipe with a thought balloon / This is not a pipe thinking about another pipe

from 3/29/15 “This is not a Ding Dong”:

Another riff on Magritte’s The Betrayal of Images (Ceci n’est pas une pipe), but even sillier than the last version I posted, which at least involved pipes (but thinking pipes). This time it’s (thinking) Ding Dongs. And the scene ends in taco sauce

from 11/5/15 “Pastiche”: Mikel Jaso’s delightful illustration, Ceci n’est pas Sherlack Halmes, paying homage to Holmes’s pipe, René Magritte, and the creations of the Sherlockians

from 7/1/16 “Big and cool and tangentially surreal”: #1 fan ad with Ceci n’est pas un ventilateur

from 2/15/17 “The news for penguins and, oh yes, penises”, the first occurrence of the term Magrittean disavowal:

Elizabeth boldly denied the Penguin Interpretation [of a cupcake] — well, with a  Magrittean disavowal (Ceci n’est pas une pipe): This is not a penguin.

from 2/19/17 “Art of the penis”:

this instance of a Magrittean Disavowal (which I’ve posted about several times; it all started with a pipe, but it’s gone in lots of directions, here to a wooden penis): [Ce n’est pas un pénis]

from 2/27/17 “Two Ztoons on language use”:

But this is Zippy’s world, so we get surrealism, not extremism, with an instance of the Magrittean disavowal … [Ceci n’est pas un président]

from 6/3/17 “This is not a President”:

A clever reversal of Magritte’s image by Annette Müllender.

A number of others have parodied the Magritte by making the bowl of the pipe into an image of POTUS’s head, but this one exploits his hair to make the stem of the pipe. Very satisfying.

from 6/28/17  “More Magrittean disavowals”:

one in a long series of strips referring to the Magrittean disavowal, a contradiction between text and image: in this case, the title of this comic strip, This is not a comic strip.

from 7/10/17 “Taking the Magrittean Disavowal at face value”:

In Magritte’s The Treachery of Images, the text disavows the image — see this recent posting on Magrittean Disavowals — so you have the choice of trusting the image (in which case, the text is false) or trusting the text (in which case, the image is counterfeit). Hilary Price’s buyer makes the second choice, so since he was looking for a picture of a pipe — don’t ask why, people’s desires are sometimes inscrutable — he’s returning what he believes to be a picture of a non-pipe.

from 8/18/17 “Big-ass globalization”:

the ad’s caption Ceci n’est pas un ventilateur ‘This is not a fan’, exemplifying what I’ve come to call the Magrittean Disavowal.

from 8/19/17 “Magrittean disavowals”:

About the terminology Magrittean disavowal / Disavowal, not the phenomenon. Mike Pope suggests that the terminology may be original with me, and that might be so. But the phenomenon has been around since Magritte’s 1929 painting — the famous pipe image captioned Ceci n’est pas une pipe —  and similar examples have been around for longer than that, in apparently paradoxical sentences like [This is not a sentence] (or its French equivalent Ceci n’est pas une phrase), in a sign that announces This is not a sign (French: Ceci n’est pas un panneau), and, more distantly, in the ancient Liar Paradox, with a number of variants:  I am lying – Everything I say is false – This sentence is false.

from 4/2/18 “Another Magrittean disavowal”, on Ceci n’est pas un gif:

In simple examples, the text is a deictic construction (with English this, French ceci, whatever) that points to an image in the composition; the text asserts that the image is not an X — a pipe, a penguin, a penis, a fan, to choose some examples from my postings — while to a viewer the image clearly is an X, so there’s a contradiction between text and image.

More complex examples are self-referential disavowals: the text points to the compostion as a whole. A comic strip that says it’s not a comic strip, a sentence that says it’s not a sentence, a sign that says it’s not a sign.

from 4/29/18 “All the dessert world is not either cake or pie”:

(#1) Steph’s objection framed as a Magrittean disavowal (it’s obviously a pie, but… — except that for Steph, it just isn’t a pie)

from 10/21/18 “The Tritoons gather by the river”: #5, a pointed Christopher Weyant editorial cartoon with a Magrittean disavowal, Ceci n’est pas une 2nd Amendment Right

from 4/24/19 “A Ceci disavowal”: #1, a Jeff Bowles composition with Ceci n’est pas un ceci (interpretable in several ways, but referring to author Louis Flint Ceci); Ceci n’est pas un homme t-shirt and its interpretations; imagined Ceci n’est pas un pédé t-shirt; paradox and referential entanglement

from 6/20/19, “Two cartoons explained”: #2, Ceci n’est pas une lune, with the Star Wars Death Star

from 8/4/19, “Briefly noted: the disavowal drill”: Ceci n’est pas une perceuse

 


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