Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Cautionary Tales / 2 of 2

We’re leading up to the point where a professional book conservator will look at some books from our June and Art family collection, but first I’m preparing for the worst with a couple of cautionary tales.  This is the second.

A vibrant exploration of Armenian folk culture, poetry and history, Sergei Parajanov’s The Color of Pomegranates (1968) is an abstract masterpiece.  Just accept there’s no coherent plot, let the images flow and, like me, you may love it.  (Note:  Conversely, if this doesn’t sound like your kind of movie, you may hate it.)

One brief segment near the beginning is the single best “water damage” scene that I’ve discovered in a lifetime of watching weird and obscure movies.

The monastery’s books have been soaked in a storm.  The monks squeeze the water out of the books in a press.

A young poet boy, who will grow up to be our hero, is instructed in the power of the word.

He climbs to the roof of the monastery.

He looks at the images of the illuminated manuscripts then lies down among the books, as they dry in the sun and the breeze.

Please note:  This is no longer recommended conservation treatment procedure for water-damaged books.

© 2010 Lee Price

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