Below is Sam Galson’s wonderfully succinct version of Ovid’s Metamorphosis. Below each of the twelve sections is my “Good BookTitle” version of the happenings. The “Good Book Title” series are books that have their titles scratched out and other titles, that I write myself, written on the spine in ballpoint pen. This new stack of books can be seen in sculptural form at the end of this post. The work is on display today and tomorrow at the Aesthetics of Information symposium and exhibition at Princeton University http://www.princeton.edu/ihum/events/information/
1) The world is created out of chaos; humanity is drowned for its sinfulness, and then reborn. Daphne escapes the lust of Apollo by turning into a tree. Jupiter rapes Io and hides her from Juno inside a bull, which Juno keeps under the guard of many-eyed Argus, until Jupiter sends Mercury to behead Argus.
Anomily or New Beginning –how to tell the difference
2) Phaethon tries to take over the chariot of the sun, falls and sets the whole world ablaze. While Jupiter is repairing things, he falls in love with Callisto and, disguised as Diana, rapes her. Juno turns her into a bear. A raven and a crow have a conversation. Mercury steals the flock of Apollo.
A Raven And a Crow Discuss Everyday Uses for Sight
3) Cadmus kills a dragon and founds Thebes. Actaeon is devoured by his own hounds; Semele gives birth to Bacchus. The stories of Tiresias, Narcissus and Pentheus are told.
Groundless Assumptions About Ancient History
In Regard to the Problem of Beauty
4) The daughters of Minyas refuse to worship Bacchus and tell stories at their looms (Pyramus and Thisbe, Venus and Mars, Salmacis and Hermaphroditus) until they are turned in bats. Juno drives Athamas insane. Perseus rescues Andromeda.
Faith, the Episodic Virtue
Future Directions in the History of Bats
5) Phineus causes a fight at Perseus’ wedding. Minerva exchanges stories with the Muses, who tell of their song-battle against the Pierides.
Thoughts on the Remarkable
6) Minerva has a weaving competition with Arachne, whom she turns to a spider. Latona slaughters Niobe’s children and she turns to stone. Tereus rapes Philomela and is fed his son Itys in revenge.
An Unfolding of Unrehearsed Passion
7) Jason goes in quest of the golden fleece, helped by Medea. Aeacus tells of a plague and a dream about ants. Cephalus tells of how he killed his wife when, as she was spying on him, he mistook her for an animal.
The Connection Between the Real and the Imagined Considered
8) Scylla betrays her father and her city falls to Minos. Daedalus and Icarus try to escape Crete. Theseus helps to kill the Calydonian boar and exchanges stories with the river,
Freedom More Broadly defined
9) Achelous tells of Hercules and Hercules’ family tell their own stories. Byblis falls in love with her twin brother. Iphis turns from a girl into a man.
The Continued Saga of Forced Perspective
10) The story of Orpheus and Eurydice. Orpheus sings of Pygmalion, the incestuous love of Myrrha, and the love of Venus for Adonis. Venus tells stories to Adonis.
A More Realistic Appraisal of Affection
11) The Thracian women stone Orpheus to death. Bacchus gives Midas his fatal gift and judges poorly at a music contest. Apollo departs for Troy and we enter historical time. Troy is cursed. We learn of the tragic love of Ceyx and Alcyone.
The Limits of Indifference
12) Paris runs off with Helen. The Trojan Nestor tells of how the girl Caenis was turned into Caeneus, an invincible warrior, and how Caeneus got involved in a terrible brawl over a dinner between some humans and centaurs.
The Importance of Meaning
13) Ajax and Ulysses compete for the arms of Achilles. We learn of the various fates of the Trojan women. Aeneas sets sail for Italy.
Life on a Few Extinct Volcanoes
14) Circe turns Scylla into a monster. Aeneas continues his journey via Carthage, Sicily and the land of the Cyclopes, where he hears of Ulysses’ adventures. We hear of how the god Vertumnus wooed Pomona. Romulus establishes peace in Italy and is deified.
The Question of Retribution and the Moral Dilemma Involved in Exacting It
15) The Roman King Numa seeks knowledge of the universe. He learns from Pythagoras, who in a long speech tells of the principles of natural philosophy. Hippolytus tells stories to Egeria to comfort her after Numa’s death. Asclepius is brought to Rome to cure a plague. Finally we learn of the deification of Caesar and the rise of Augustus.
Early Signs of What’s Shortly to Come