Critical Writing Index

Touching Animals

by Helena Reckitt

C Magazine, Fall 2010, no. 107, pp. 34-39

Grooming can be a powerful bonding tactic outside of language. Reckitt reflects on the nature of human and animal relations and our desire to pursue the formation of these affectionate bonds. By producing a list of artists who observe or take part in human / creaturely relations, Reckitt considers our fascination with otherness, perhaps explained by how mimicry of animals' behaviour allows us to "rid ourselves of consciousness and responsibility" and return to nature. Shame and the withholding of the mutual gaze are also discussed as reactions to the queerness and discomfort in acknowledging interspecies relations.

ITEM 2010.107 – available for viewing in the Research Centre

Videos, Artworks and Artists Cited

Journey to the Lower WorldMarcus Coates

How to Explain Pictures to a Dead HareJoseph Beuys

I Like America and America Likes MeJoseph Beuys

The Horse ImpressionistsLucy Gunnings

Letter on the Blind, for the Use of Those Who SeeJavier Téllez


Sunday Afternoon IIMichelle Williams Gamaker

Apology to Roadkill 1-6Shaun Gladwell