Communication Games

I found it very difficult to review Antonia Baehr’s show in the previous part of this feature.

Even though I enjoyed it enormously and it has imprinted a multitude of indelible images in my memory, I found it very difficult to translate these images into words in order to engage readers through a written review. Images work differently on the psyche, especially when they have been assembled deliberately in order to confound our desire for closure of meaning.

In the Zoological Institute for Extinct Species, Wouters also identifies this problem and mentions Werner Herzog’s conclusion: we don’t have enough images showing us the affects of environmental degradation, in spite of copious tomes written about the subject.

Perhaps this is what the 18th century lexicographer and master of the verbal repartee meant when he admitted that ‘experience works more forcefully on the mind than precepts’ (Dr Johnson).