Acclaimed writer Carol Mavor introduces a rare screening of Jean-Pierre Gorin’s influential 1980 essay film about the extraordinary twins, who astounded linguists with their invented vocabulary and launches her new book Aurelia: Art and Literature Through the Mouth of the Fairy Tale.
With little access to the outside world, the two girls in the film create a private form of communication that’s an amalgam of the distinctive English dialects they hear at home. This polyphonic nonfiction investigation looks at the family from a variety of angles, where Gorin takes the role of a sort of sociological detective.
Interrogating and collecting modern day fairy tales in literature and art, Aurelia reveals the magical and political power of such stories. Mavor discovers the fairy-tale realm in surprising places: the tragic candy-land poetry of the 1950s ‘genius’ child-poet Minou Drouet; the subterranean world of enchantment in the cave paintings of Lascaux; and the brown fairies of African American poet Langston Hughes.
Carol Mavor is Professor of Art History and Visual Culture at the University of Manchester. She has published widely on photography, cinema, colour and childhood. Her books include Blue Mythologies: Reflections on a Colour (Reaktion, 2013).