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Sunday, 23 June 2013

Act 3, Scene 8

The narrative began with Act 1, scene 1 on April 10, 2013.
To access all scenes, scroll to blog archive at the bottom of the page.

Yeah, sure. I'm hungry too. There's a good place not far away where we can get panini or pizza, if that sounds OK.

Lost in conversation, Whiten and Boyle nearly stumble over a man just outside the pavilion. He is intent on juggling the various objects he tries awkwardly to hold onto while at the same time reaching for something he has dropped on the pavement. Surprisingly, his clothing consists only of what appears to be a deerskin loin cloth. 

Whiten reaches for Boyle's arm to avoid tripping, and feels something crunch underfoot. Looking down, she sees that she has crushed several charred twigs.

STOOPID WOMAN! Move! Go away!

Whiten is truly remorseful; however, she has also noticed an unusual pungency that hangs in the air around the man. She sees that he is carrying charcoal, some sharp-looking stones, and a crude wooden or bone bowl containing powdery, rust-coloured dirt. 
Oh! I am so sorry. I didn't see you there; please let me help you with your things. You're an artist I see – here for the last weeks of the Biennale? I am Colette, and this is Shary; it's Shary's work in this pavilion behind us.
This is all spoken rapidly as the three try to reassemble the man and his belongings. The general scuffle is punctuated by a stream of muttered obscenities issuing from the man's snarling lips.

Man, now finally in possession of all his things, stands and glowers at the women. He is breathing heavily, his eyes  – the women step back out of range of the sour breeze he exudes.
Stoopid women! I am Dugh. I go in cave to make beautiful picture. Get out of my way.

Boyle, stepping protectively in front of the entrance to the pavilion, blocking the man's progress.
Wait a minute. What do you mean you're going into the cave to make art? This isn't a real cave! You can't just walk in and deface the walls; this is my art!

Dugh, stunned by the authority in Boyle's voice, and suddenly deflated. His face contorts from angry grimace to wide-eyed amazement, and finally to an expression best described as pathetically sorrowful. He looks like a kid whose kitten has just been run over by a passing car. The transformation is so rapid that Whiten and Boyle are taken aback, especially when they see tears emerge from the big, sad eyes, and hear a barely audible whimper rising in Dugh's throat.
No cave? Ahhnnn, mmmmm (moaning). No cave. I look everywhere for cave, for wall to paint anywhere. No caves. No walls. People stop Dugh from making art on walls here. I look everywhere. All artists, they say Dugh is important, Dugh is grandfather, Dugh is first artist. But there is nowhere for Dugh to make art.
At this point, he quietly collapses, dropping his belongings again, and slumping to sit, utterly dejected on the pavement at the feet of the two women.

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Historically accurate anecdotes are especially welcome.