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Book Art by Yasmina Reza (2011-11-11)


Art by Yasmina Reza (2011-11-11)

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    Available in PDF - DJVU Format | Art by Yasmina Reza (2011-11-11).pdf | Language: UNKNOWN
    Yasmina Reza(Author)

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  • Yasmina Reza(Author)
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Review Text

  • By Ezzat Goushegir on November 30, 2009

    Ezzat Goushegir, DePaul University, Chicago"Art" a play by Yasmina Reza has a universal theme on the complexity of human behavior in our modern time.Although the play appears absurdly simple on the surface, but digging inside the dark comic crackling language, one will find many complex layers on its undertone. It deals with serious subjects we face in today's human communication such as: narcissistic interactions, vulnerability, the meaning of friendship, the games of power and ultimately the tremendous need for love, sense of belonging and affection.Serge buys a white painting with three scars on it for a huge sum of money. His friend Marc accuses him for his bad taste and deconstructive perspective of modern art. Ivan, less privileged in his social class, and overwhelmed by his personal problems, tries to mediate by pleasing both Serge and Marc. But the conflict is beyond the white painting. It is about their infatuation and obsession with an egoistic desire for conquest. In other words, the characters' self gratification and ambition drive them to dominate and control others in order to gain power. Respecting each other's freedom is only used by them in theoretical verbal debates. In practice the essence of this matter is not truly exercised! Ivan challenges Serge and Marc's gobbling contemptuous language and criticizes their ingenuous actions by philosophizing the meaning of freedom:Yvan: ..."If I'm who I am because I'm who I am and you're who you are because you're who you are, then I'm who I am and you're who you are. If, on the other hand, I'm who I am because you're who you are, and if you're who you are because I'm who I am, then I'm not who I am and you're not who you are..." (P 41)As the play progresses, Reza shows how underneath the three character's confrontational actions lies an enormous vulnerability. And a strong need for unconditional love, affection and self-approval.Marc: ...I enjoyed your admiration. I was flattered. I was always grateful to you for thinking of me as a man apart. I even thought being a man apart was a somehow superior condition, until one day you pointed out to me that it wasn't.Serge: This is very alarming.Marc: It's the truth.Serge: What a disaster...!Marc: Yes, what a disaster!Serge: What a disaster!Marc: Especially for me...Whereas you've found a new family. Your penchant for idolatry has unearthed new object of worship. The artist!...Deconstruction! (P: 52)At the end, three characters express their profound lonely world in their monologues. Ivan explains that only irrationality would bring humans together.Ivan: ...In fact I can no longer bear any kind of rational argument, nothing formative in the world, nothing great or beautiful in the world has ever been born of rational argument. (P: 62)And Marc, who has despised this piece of white painting through the entire play, at the end interprets it with a profound poetic tendency and describes it as a world where a solitary man appears and disappears into the landscape. That`s how humans journey into life.Marc: Under the white clouds, the snow is falling.You can't see the white clouds, or the snow.Or the cold, or the white glow of the earth.A solitary man glides downhill on his skis.The snow is falling.It falls until the man disappears back into the landscape.My friend Serge, who's one of my oldest friends, has bought a painting.It's a canvas about five foot by four.It represents a man who moves across a space and disappears. (P: 63)"Art" has a playful, verbal dancing dialogue with certain musicality and rhythm which makes any actor eager to take part in acting a role.

  • By ky on January 13, 2015

    I purchased this as a required text for an English class. The play was good, glad the instructor chose this play.

  • By B. Wilfong on May 6, 2013

    "Art" is a play that is about many things; however I don't believe that it is about art and artists. Rather those are the devices that playwright Yasmina Reza uses to develop her themes in this text. "Art" is a work about the subjective nature of human relationships, friendship in particular.This three character play is a quick read, and a work that I think needs to be revisited a few times before one can really sink their teeth into it. The power of this play is to be found in the myriad of ways that we recognize ourselves and some of our relationships in its characters. When one looks at long friendships we see that there are so many implied understandings that those relationships consist of, and most strain in long term relationships happens when one, or more, of those standings are violated. In the case of this play fault lines in the friendship between Marc and Serge (the combatants of the play's main conflict) are made larger when Serge buys a painting that destroys the idea of him that Marc has projected as his image of Serge for so long. What long term friendship has not been destroyed, or ultimately strengthened, by such an encounter?The text has some wonderfully funny moments, especially in the character of Yvan who is a little neurotic and overwhelmed by the intellectual capacities of Serge and Marc. I also think Yvan is the character that we come to understand the most, although he seems secondary to the other two.I would see the play professionally done, and then read it a month or so later. I think one can get a lot out of the experience in approaching it in this way. "Art" has a lot to give, but it does not give it up easily. It is not difficult to "miss the forest for the trees" with this text.The play asks us if we are authentic people, or just the projections our friends want us to be. It is a good question and the great strength of "Art" is that it probes this question in an interesting manner.

  • By J. Johnson on April 14, 2001

    A deceptively simple masterpiece,Ms.Reza uses art that is the most difficult to agree upon, abstract, as the device around the equally ambiguous territory of the mentor and his understudy. What happens when the understudy graduates by purchasing a work of art without the authority's prior "consent" is just the beginning and as is often the case, Ivan, the innocent bystander is drawn into the play as friends often are, expected to be judge and jury between friends. Perhaps being an abstract, visual artist gives me the knowledge of the "big surprise bang" at the end of the play as it becomes clear that Mark not only understood but was moved by the painting all along and what ensued was not,in fact, that he thought Serge made a collossal mistake, but a man whose own ego couldn't bear what a beautiful purchase Serge was able to make without his assistance. Mark's view of the painting at the end is not possible to suddenly see, but the vision of an erudite man who knew this from the moment he betrayed his friend and "student" by not congratulating him in the first place. This may give it away, but it's better than not getting the truthful, devastating twist the ending of "Art" actually delivers, especially from an artistic perspetive.

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