Like this guy, I got up close to peer into their faces and try - but never succeed - in meeting their gazes. Maybe that's what others read as creepiness, the way the creatures seem to draw you in to look, but then refuse to engage with you directly. Again, that didn't seem creepy to me. Instead it seemed, again - Gentle. Shy. Sincere, in the way I've used that word in that past here.
But in that combination of proximity and distance I also see some basic truths about human relationships: for other people are both as close and as distant as these sculptures, as animals and as sculptures, are to me. And then I read this, in Barthes A Lover's Discourse, which I picked up at Powell's over Christmas and have been reading before bed:
I am caught in this contradiction: on the one hand, I believe I know the other better than anyone and triumphantly assert my knowledge...and on the other hand, I am often struck by the obvious fact that the other is impenetrable, intractable, not to be found. I cannot open up the other, trace back the other's origins, solve the riddle...Then all that is left for me to do is to reverse my ignorance into truth. It is not true that the more you love, the better you understand; all that the action of love obtains from me is merely this wisdom: that the other is not to be known; his opacity is not the screen around a secret, but, instead, a kind of evidence in which the game of reality and appearance is done away with...Or again, instead of trying to define the other...I turn to myself; "What do I want, wanting to know you?" What would happen if I decided to define you as a force and not a person? And if I were to situate myself as another force confronting yours? This would happen: my other would be defined solely by the suffering or pleasure he affords me.And so I say again that I love these sculptures. But not in a loose, sloppy, gushy way. In a very precise, structural way - as Barthes is writing about love as a structure or a series of structures. This would be the structure of the last and of many of my relationships. I have a thing for difficult, even impossible, people. And maybe that is similar to my thing for sculptures.