September 11, 2019

Do we have a desire for beauty to come from something beautiful?

Jared Celosse

New Orleans (Esca), 2019

My entry explores the relationship between beauty and deception. The piece follows a man who hears (and is snared by) a stunning voice, following it through the city of New Orleans to its creator. Thematically, I examine the idea of beauty being at once incredibly important, yet simultaneously almost entirely ambiguous due to its separation from the realities of its creator, whose own beauty and personality is often obscured. This can leave the creator’s existence wholly to our imagination and thus our conceptions of the art may be inaccurate or misplaced. I emphasise the ambiguity of beauty lyrically by making reference to the ‘angler-fish’ and projecting its qualities onto the creator. The angler-fish being a sea creature whose bait (scientifically called, ‘esca’) is a beautiful luminescence that it projects into darkness to lure its prey. In the end, our protagonist meets the creator and leaves us unclear as to whether he is happy with where his journey has left him. There is a parallel to be made with contemporary debates about the value of art & beauty that comes from a ‘problematic’ creator. Why do we care about the creator of art, is their personal ‘beauty’ even relevant?