In my busy student life I had given up on Galatea. I just didn’t have the mindset to downloading and figure out a program on my computer. But after this weeks class I was so intrigued, that I just had to check out the piece by myself.
The narrator of the piece is “you” who is an art critic visiting the museum where the statue of Galatea is. If you don’t know the myth (I didn’t), Galatea was a statue made by the artist Pygmalion. He fell in love with her, and prayed that she would come alive, this the goddess Aphrodite heard and she answered his prayers (Wiki).
The elit piece takes a lot from the mythology. The description of Galatea fits very well with ancient greek statues, and she talks about the ancient greek gods.
In my version of this piece the critic wasn’t very happy about the “bad programming” of the statue or art piece. This caught me completely off guard as I had the idea that this was completely built around the old mythology. By adding programming it got a very sci-fi-y feel to it, as if people in the (near) future would wake up statues this way (the first robot just became a citizen of Saudi Arabia, so it’s really only a matter of time).
The language of the piece seems very worked through. It is very beautiful yet simple (in a way where there isn’t an unnecessary use of fancy words). Galatea’s language seems so thoughtfull, while the critic is sometime unnecesarily harsh, as I believe a lot of critics are. Even when I got frustrated with the piece it self I was still enjoying the language.
Moving through the piece I got a bit frustrated. The commands I tried writing didn’t work and I when I did get something right she wasn’t giving me very long answers.
At some point I was running out of logic ideas and I decided to ask Galatea about Galatea. This turned out to be interesting. The critic demanded to know what she was made of, and again brought up if it was some new material, sci-fi vibe is back. But this unraveled a whole new sequence of things. Galatea did not tell exactly what she was made of, but that the critic seemed mentally strong enough to deal with her. I liked that it almost made it seem like the critic wasn’t completely mentally well. After this comment Galatea turned first to wood, then to sand before she: “fled[s] entirely, and she is only a shadow, passing you in a cool whisper. “I am what you think I am; I am what your treatment makes of me.””
In a way a person is made up of what people think of them. Not necessarily in a bad way, but it is so easy for the balance to flip, and that being the only thing that matters to a person. But it is not only the thought that counts here, the way we treat each other also controls the people around us understanding of themself. If a person is always treated badly, for example if they are told they are not good enough, that will eventually be that persons truth.
I think this ending was very poetic and it really is a comment on how we should be better at treating other people nice, because the way we think of people might eventually rub of on our actions and then it will affect them.