Transposed heads

Category : ,

Date : 2018

This design got stuck in our minds since we read the Thomas Mann novel- “Transposed Heads”. 
This story was inspired by an Indian tale. “In a twinned paroxysm, two friends, the intellectual Shridaman and the earthy Nanda, behead themselves. Magically, their severed heads are restored – but to the wrong body, and Shridaman’s wife, Sita, is unable to decide which combination represents her real husband. The story is further complicated by the fact that Sita happens to be in love with both men.” It was very amusing from the beginning till the end, but it portrayed a very serious conflict between mind and body.

This book gave us an excellent starting point, but we couldn’t find a way to make it work in our own style. Then, we suddenly remembered  an amazing short movie directed by Alejandro Jodorowsky in 1957, it was also inspired by Mann’s “Transposed Heads” but we didn’t realise immediately (maybe because they are a way different, visually).
This short movie is called “La Cravate.”

Our first attempt had a middle body, decapitated, choosing his own head. However, it didn’t work very well because wasn’t symmetrical and appealing in the way we wanted.  So we decided to just fill the design with heads – YOU are now the main character and you can choose the head you like most, and switch as many times as you like. 

For the heads we used, we tried to have them linked somehow, as if they were from the same person.
We took the idea that your emotions have the ability to shape your features, sometimes so tightly that you could look somebody else.

We really wished to have a wardrobe full of heads, it was so much easier, we could be anyone! (like Roger’s personas from American Dad)

“Head Measures” from: Hierinn sind begriffen vier Bucher von menschlicher Proportion by Albrecht Dürer, 1538.
“Têtes à trois quartiers racourcies.”-from: Livre de pourtraicture / Liure de pourtraiture de maistre Iean Cousin. Jehan Cousin and Jean Leclerc, 1608.
Wooden case containing 60 small phrenological heads, by William Bally, Manchester or Dublin-1831. (Science Museum, London)
“Meeting of thirty-five heads of expression”- Louis Boilly, 1825
Horatio Gordon Robley with his Mokomokai collection, late 19th century.
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