From Jaques Lacan’s “Jouissance”:
Look, you arrive into the world with this intense attachment to the great whole, It. You have it, all the answers, everything. Only it’s gone now, you’ve just been detached. That’s all over.
Within a country house at Guitrancourt, Courbet’s “L’Origine du monde” occupies a space behind a sliding wooden door. It is a cunt, as depicted by a painter of the realist school. The model is unimportant, her head and upper torso covered in neutral cloth. The upper thighs, midriff and cunt are all that may be seen. The scruff of wild dark hair contrasting with the easy flesh and leading us in an unfocused arrow down to the unseeable. But you can feel it, are drawn to it. Climb inside, nestle in that fine belly, what is there that is left?
This house, at Guitrancourt, is the seat of Jacques Lacan, master of psychoanalytic theory, once beloved of the surrealists, friend of Dali, and personal physician to Pablo Picasso. It is his painting and it is his sliding wooden door that obscures it. What is the reason for this obfuscation? The subject, perhaps, is too bold or unacceptable for casual display. It may be that the door is rolled across as guests arrive. It is even possible that the image is too strong to be a permanent feature of the room for Lacan himself. It may be appreciated only when the moment is right, when it cannot distract from the details of everyday life, and when there is no one around.
The wooden door, however, had not been left bare to obscure this cunt. How to decorate it? Lacan asks Andre Masson, his artist brother-in-law, to sketch a relief of L’Origine on the door. A cunt obscured by a cunt.
Be wary of the image.