Louise Bourgeois: the fabric of her language

Introduction excerpt by Marie-Laure Bernadac (Louise Bourgeois…Writings and Interviews 1923-1997)

“Louise Bourgeois began writing her diary at the age of twelve and has never stopped. Her cupboards are filled with dozens and dozens of private diaries, in notebooks and exercise books, on loose sheets of paper, and in engagement books; all are meticulously preserved, dated and archived. The diaries chart her days, her encounters, and appointments, and transcribe her emotions and the movement of her thoughts. Sometimes they also serve as a laboratory of writing, a starting point for her work with the written word.

The fabric of her language is woven from everyday materials. Her constant practice of writing goes hand in hand with that if drawing. …

Everything important that is said must be committed to memory; that is, written down or recorded, placed in store. For her, this is a way of waging war against time by recreating the past. …

All these texts display a precise and penetrating intelligence, alert to the complexities of human emotion. … Her writings reveal a passionate interest in words: their sounds, their colors and their evocative power.” (1998, 18-20)


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