The Symbol Gives Rise to Thought:
Writings on Art by Marina Warner Volume 1
Edited by Vivian Sky Rehberg
Introduction by Marina Warner
Violette Editions (2014)
Designed by modern activity
The first of two volumes
Paperback with jacket, 400 pages
Over 400 illustrations
27 x 19.2 cm (h x w, portrait)
'One of the finest literary and intellectual minds at work in Britain'
– Times Literary Supplement
'Marina Warner's essays and lectures reveal a consistently honest and
agile mind preoccupied with the powerful controlling fictions of our lives'
– The Observer
This unprecedented collection brings together a selection of writings on art by internationally acclaimed novelist, historian and critic Marina Warner. For 30 years Warner has published widely on a range of art-world subjects and objects from contemporary installation and film works to paintings by Flemish and Italian Renaissance masters, through Victorian photography and 20th-century political drawings and prints. Warner's extraordinary curiosity in art and culture is conveyed
in writing that is at once poetic and playful, elegant and rigorous, which trains our eyes on the smallest of details while painting a broad-brushstroke landscape of art past and present.
Themes familiar to Warner's readers – myths and fantasy, psychic and sexual experience, the vast and marvellous expanse of the human imagination – are treated in the lectures and articles, stories, interviews and essays contained here, some of which are published for the first time or republished from out-of-print sources. In the first of two volumes, editor Vivian Sky Rehberg has assembled themed collections of texts entitled States of Play, Telling Tales and Technologies
of the Uncanny, with an introduction from Marina Warner. Volume II will investigate Metamorphoses, Gateways to the Primordial and Iconoclashes.
Texts in the two volume-collection include interviews with Tacita Dean, Paula Rego, Lucian Freud; catalogue essays on Maggie Hambling, Helen Chadwick, Leonora Carrington, Henry Fuseli, Zarina Bhimji, Kiki Smith, Tony Oursler, Anselm Kiefer and Fischli/Weiss; articles on Anish Kapoor, Tracey Emin, Sigmar Polke, Marlene Dumas, Louise Bourgeois; a debate with Juliet Steyn and James Lingwood; stories for artist's books by Kiki Smith and Helen Douglas; lectures on Hieronymus Bosch, Tom and Dorothy Cross and William Kentridge.
With Warner as our guide, The Symbol Gives Rise to Thought invites us to explore new ways of seeing and engaging with the traces of our artistic heritage.
Marina Warner is a writer of fiction, criticism and history; her writings explore mythic figures and symbolism in the art and literature they inspire. She has judged the The Jerwood Drawing Prize and the Turner Prize; she is a regular broadcaster on BBC Radio 4, and has given lectures worldwide, including the National Gallery and ICA, London, the Prado in Madrid; she has delivered the Presidential Lecture at Stanford University and the Carpenter Lecture at Harvard. Holder of 12 honorary degrees, and two honorary fellowships, Marina is a Fellow of the British Academy and of the Royal Society of Literature. She has been awarded a CBE, Chevalier de l'Ordre
des Arts et des Lettres, France, and Commendatore dell'Ordine della Stella di Solidareità, Italy. For her fiction Marina has been shortlisted for the Booker Prize
and won a Silver PEN Award. She is a winner of the Aby Warburg Prize and a
Getty Scholar. She has taught at Columbia University, Princeton, Trinity College Cambridge, the Royal College of Art and All Souls Oxford. Currently Marina Warner is Professor at the Department of Literature, Film and Theatre Studies at the University of Essex and Visiting Professor at NYU Abu Dhabi.
Vivian Sky Rehberg is an art historian and critic based in Paris and Rotterdam.
A founding editor of Journal of Visual Culture, she is a contributing editor of frieze, and has written for numerous contemporary art publications. Previously Chair of the department of Critical Studies at Parsons Paris School of Art + Design, where she taught modern and contemporary art, Rehberg is currently Course Director for the Masters in Fine Art at Piet Zwart Institute in Rotterdam.