Exegesis: The Ecorche

In retrospect, this week’s card needs some further explanation.

An ecorche is a flayed human figure, used for anatomical and moral instruction. For our purposes, the ecorche is always a dyad, never a monad; always both male and female, always two figures. This paired figure represents the development of science and art, and the way they play off of and influence each other. Also the ways in which art and science distinguish themselves from each other. The ecorche occupies a middle ground between the two styles, or, rather, a position prior to the speciation of concepts. Despite this, the ecorche is not a particularly ambivalent figure; not an uneasy blending of disparate elements but its own singular unity.

The ecorche is also the study of interior human landscapes, both physical and social, as well as the artistic and selective presentation of that study. It is not purely observation, nor purely invention, but instead taste, discretion, thesis and antithesis.

The ecorche is a summer figure.