With blogging being at a standstill these days, why not share passages from My Last Breath, just for the heck of it. So here are two that I read this morning, both pointers to the anarchist in Buñuel, a man who often fantasised about the destruction of what we call "culture" and who once said that the ultimate Surrealist act would be to go into a street and shoot indiscriminately into the crowd:
I have a horror of newspaper reporters, two of whom literally attacked me one day while I was walking down the road not far from El Paular. Despite my pleas to be left alone, they leapt around me, clicking as they went. I was already far too old to take both of them on at once, and only wished that I'd been foresighted enough to bring my revolver.(Suggestions for a better world: make it legal to shoot journalists. It bears mentioning that the next paragraph begins with the line "Whereas my feelings about reporters couldn't be clearer, I confess to mixed emotions when it comes to spiders.")
And the second passage:
Where Picasso's concerned, his legendary facility is obvious, but sometimes I'm repelled by it. I can't stand Guernica (which I nonetheless helped to hang). Everything about it makes me uncomfortable - the grandiloquent tehnique as well as the way it politicizes art. Both Alberti and Jose Bergamin share my aversion; in fact, all three of us would be delighted to blow up the painting, but I suppose we're too old to start playing with explosives.I love that throwaway "which I nonetheless helped to hang". Mental pictures appear of a young Buñuel wrinkling his nose in disgust as he puts up the legendary work while Picasso, hands still wet with paint, shouts "No no, it's the other way round!" What some of us would give to have kept the company Buñuel did in the 1920s and 1930s, around the dawn of some of the most exciting cultural movements. And it turns out that all he really wants to do is blow up one of the greatest works of art to have emerged from that period.
(More on Buñuel in this old post about my brief meeting with the writer Jean-Claude Carriere, a longtime associate of Buñuel)