Monday, 2 September 2019

Picture Post #48: Gratifying Human Necessities



'Because things don’t appear to be the known thing; they aren’t what they seemed to be neither will they become what they might appear to become.' 


Posted by Tessa Den Uyl

Florence, May 2019

Horses have been bred to gratify human necessities.  For centuries, the horse has been the vehicle for transportation of goods and people.  Above all, it has been a symbol for war.  When motors were invented, the horse retired from its often ‘inhorse’ duties, and we could advance our propensities in other ways.

The picture has something to do with tourism, expansion, and war.  More deeply, it reflects something about the human mind, which flaunts its inventiveness -- turning everything into a tool.  In the prancing horse on the Ferrari logo, we may gaze and wonder:

            what or whom is served with this kind of human resourcefulness?

4 comments:

Keith said...

Intriguing juxtaposition, Tessa. Despite the allure of all things modern, high-tech, and sleek — like the Ferrari — we seem never to quite let go of nostalgia — like the horse. We accommodate — seek out time and place and circumstance — for both. It’s a reciprocally tight grip. And, to borrow a word from your title, both ‘gratify’ — though perhaps gratifying wants more so than ‘necessities’. The Ferrari seems to feed our urge to look forward, the horse (and carriage) our urge to look backward. All the while, we still curiously measure the Farrari’s muscle in horsepower — some 980 of them. In their uniquely respective ways, both primary points of focus in the image are groomed, for appearance and function: the Ferrari through mechanical engineering, the horse through biological engineering (the ‘human mind flaunting its inventiveness’, as you say).

docmartincohen said...

I suppose if it was a dynamic looking figure on a racehorse, the juxtapositon would seem harmonious - to racing car lovers anyway. But here isn't there a contrast of 'old world/ new world' too?

The idea of the warhorse is surely lost in our associations today. But Tessa is right - they police still use them as their more vicious kind of symbol.

Tessa den Uyl said...

The title is Thomas’ credit. And as I wrote to him, the picture doesn’t really need text. Though when thinking about this picture the obvious is somehow not that obvious. Without discovering the horse’ potentials would tourism exist? There’s a lot of us in horses, well, horse history...

Thomas Scarborough said...

Well, here is some commentary that we so often don't think of at all -- but we should. What or whom is served? I wonder how many people know the answer to that!

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