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Insects and other minute perceptions in the Baroque House

posted on 2023-05-22, 16:27 authored by Sellbach, U, Loo, S

ln a fold on the plateau, stands a house with two floors. The house once belonged to a philosopher, long dead, whose work was said to be as Baroque as the decorations of his house.

The lower floor is a wide and horizontal hall. Veins of luminous marble cover the walls and encircle five windows to the outside. Vividly patterned upholstery - wallpaper, carpet and ceiling frescos - fill the room with Baroque twists and turns. A grand curved stair leads to a private room upstairs where black marble folds refuse to reflect the light. The room is decorated by drapery, 'diversified by folds', that spill down to the lower level, its cords dangling out the windows.

In the great hall below, a magnificent Baroque soiree is being held, with guests, human and nonhuman. The folds of the curtains are rippling with fish, foaming like waves, spilling into the space like a horse's mane. As an ecological swarm, the revelers renew the turbulence of the house through their visible movements and melodic cries.

A butterfly, a fly, a worm and a tick make their way to the house, captivated by the magnificent sights and sounds. They enter the hall, 'through "some small openings" that exist on the lower level'. As they do so the 'lower extremity of the cords' begin to oscillate, translating the visible and audible gestures of the guests downstairs into strange harmonies above. Blind, deaf and closed, the folds of the curtains in the upper chamber are like a 'living dermis', faintly sensing the vibrations of the world below.


Publication title

Deleuze and the Non/Human


J Roffe, H Stark






School of Architecture and Design


Palgrave MacMillan

Place of publication

New York, USA



Rights statement

Copyright 2015 Authors, editors and Palgrave Macmillan

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