We’re bullish on a new movie just arrived in town, namely, Hou Hsiao Hsien’s The Assassin! The star/ protagonist is named Yinniang and her story is all about Yin and Yang. Being a professional killer you’d have to say she’s somehow bulked up with Yang–that mover and shaker fuel. But her story is all about having it both ways–Yin (openness to wider energies) being very much a part of her make-up.

As it happens the world of vintage graphics seriously deals with (though not in as many words) Yin, Yang–and their blends. I thought it would be interesting to attend to those items in our collection running with the keynotes; and those items running with the syntheses.

Plenty of Yin in this fabulous promotion (by the very special Marcello Dudovich) for a skin cream putting one very close to Mother Nature.  



In the operetta being so brilliantly evoked here the feminine presence is about as heavily serviced as can be.Whereas in the film bringing this all on an equally glorious surround entails a more active range, here we have seductive luxuriating in soft, melodramatic sentiment.




At the other side of the universe, in this vintage litho Yang cuts a swath across France and impresses a nation.





Yang is the sphere of calculation, machination within a menacing world history. This route particularly speaks to those often buried up to their ears in government-secured bonds.





The ancient principles of Yin and Yang included a fairly comprehensive discernment that those two dimensions were to be harmonized in various ways. Whereas the film kicking this underway is all about all the deft correspondence in the world not being proof against violent (and rampant) one-track minds, here we celebrate a play of viable intercourse regardless of how far it may proceed.





Heavy on Yin–the cosmos of music yielding much satisfaction. And the figures being in some sort of cooperative mode makes for a run within the marketplace.





Strictly markets. Strictly Yang? Yes, I suppose, but being awash in work can crash through (however fleetingly, and ineffectually) the rigid tomb of common sense.





In The Assassin the protagonist manages to find a creative balance in returning to her parental farmstead amidst a countryside acting as proof against brittle and shallow careerism. Unfortunately this move, by a central character and master of sensuous marshalling, ends up in some kind of ditch. That wholesome simplicity, on the ascent and descent, insinuates that (even in the 9th century) there has to be another range of power, a range encompassing that inventive luxe on display amidst lords and ladies and their soap opera from hell.

Our graphic here: Yin and Yang. Dance on!


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