Sunday, 10 May 2015
Nothing to do with Robbie Williams, obviously. At least, I don't think so. In my recent dabblings with digital imagery, a theme of "angels" has started to emerge. There is a slightly disreputable vein of modern thinking that has revived the ancient figure of the angel as a "messenger" between different domains of discourse, for example in the work of philosopher Michel Serres, Wim Wenders' film Wings of Desire (Der Himmel über Berlin), or Tony Kushner's Angels in America. The idea of these mercurial envoys, faithfully and patiently transmitting communications between realms appeals to me, perhaps in part because of my father's wartime trade as a despatch rider. The emblem of the Royal Signals is Mercury, wing-heeled messenger of the gods, known to all as "Jimmy".
The words inscribed on the image above are the opening of Rike's first Duino Elegy: "Wer, wenn ich schriee, hörte mich denn aus der Engel Ordnungen?" (Who, among the ranks of angels, would hear me, if I cried out?).