Click on one of the colored boxes to see an enlargement.
The poster image is Alcandre’s machine, a floating, violent,
impersonal, and powerfully emotional art-generator. (Alcandre is the
magician in the play; I played him in this production.) It has a sort of
logic: A human heart goes in the top; it is squeezed,
crushed, and cooked, slowly, in the large pressure cooker. Emotions boil
off first; they are routed to the distillery. Water is
siphoned off for the paper mill. What’s left is
muscle, gristle, and fat, and the squeezer and sifter
separate these. The fat is piped away and burned -- that’s what heats
the cooker. The gristle is sifted off; it’s the pulp material used to
make paper. The muscle slips along a chute into the motor
(magic), a closed sphere, the source of power for the whole machine.
The water and gristle are stirred and pressed by the paper
mill into an endless scroll, and the mechanical hand
writes on that scroll -- it’s writing a play -- with ink made from regulated emotion. The motor must run clean or the machine
will fail: its exhaust, wrung-out heart muscle, is the
poster’s black background.
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The heart entering the machine // top
The pressure cooker, separator and distillery // top
The motor that runs the machine // top
The paper mill, the hand, and the scroll // top
The motor’s exhaust is the black background // top