by Louise-Amélie Panet-Berczy
(aka The Battle of Longue-Pointe, aka Battle of the Barn)
MAIN PAGE ⎔ SECTION PAGE ⎔ SITE MAP ⎔ GLOSSARY
ART OF THE 237 LEVEL
BATTLE OF SISTERS CREEK ⎔ ENGLISH SPRINGER SPANIEL ⎔ MAN OF VAN DIEMENS LAND ⎔ OXBOROUGH ⎔ RABBIT PRINT ⎔ THREE JOHN WEBBER PRINTS ⎔ YEI PICTORIAL
Seen only once, between rooms 231 (obscured by Danny in the above shot) and 229, as Danny trikes behind the lounge elevators, before his last right turn toward 237 (41:32-41:37).
This was definitely the most obscure piece I’ve ID’d so far. I had to make a collage of the three frames it’s visible during just to get a sense of what the picture contains.
The oldest painting so far by a Canadian, and the most famous piece by its creator, one big connection is that Panet lived with her husband on a 2400 acre land in Sandwich, Upper Canada (now Windsor), and the paintings that are just around the corner from here by John Webber (the next oldest paintings in the film), were partially made in what was then called the Sandwich Islands (now Fox and Unalaska).
She was a poet (way before it was cool), and she wrote pieces with names like Summer of the Savages (about the nice weather where she lived), and A Frightful Evil of the Edge Oriental (about the cholera that killed many Canadians, and ailed her). Obviously these names speak to a racist mind, but I can’t find anything saying she was uniquely so, and I wonder if it might be a case of things getting lost in (Google) translation. She wrote poems that were around 1100 verses long, and many of her paintings could be lost to obscurity in the attics and basements of people unaware of their value. I’m afraid I’ve lost the link that made these claims, but if I find it again, I’ll let you know.
I doubt somehow that Kubrick was trying to draw attention to this prolific entertainer, since the piece he chose of hers is immediately about the battle of Longue-Pointe, which was an American attempt by Ethan Allen (military companion of Benedict Arnold) to take Montreal with only 90 men. He was thwarted heavily when his backup didn’t arrive and the French Canadians managed to round up forces from every manner of local life: British, French-Canadian, Canadian, indigenous. Allen was trapped on an island as a result (possibly the one in the image), and was shot up and then chased down and held prisoner. He spent a long time on prison ships and got famous for writing an account of his time held captive. There’s a secondary connection there, as well, because Ethan Allen headed something called the Green Mountain Boys, a militia with a few military successes (I forget where I saw it, but I think they started cuz they didn’t want to pay taxes?), so-called as a reference to the meaning of the name Vermont (French: Green Mountain). Well, in the establishing shot of the Kensington apartments at the beginning, where Wendy and Danny eat lunch, we get a beautiful look at Green Mountain. As fans of my Redrum Road analysis will recall, there’s a subtle thing going on between room 237 and Danny, where his desire to enter it has a connection to his desire to return home. This painting, therefore, creates a loose connective tissue, there.
This painting contains almost nothing militaristic or foreboding in nature (there seems to be a small, disused cannon in the distance, by some ramshackle sheds that might’ve been used as turrets, but maybe not). I wonder if Panet painted it to suggest that while this seemingly epic battle took place here, it’s perfectly idyllic now. The piece has a strong use of warm colours, includes a rainbow, a farm lady milking a red cow (with great horns!) next to a litter of foals, some boat/canoes shored up lazily, and some waterfowl (loons?) swimming around nearby. The impression you get is one of spectacular natural beauty on this self-contained, if rustic, island paradise. Also, I can’t be quite sure which is the accurate title for the painting (I’ve seen all three on different sites), but the idea that it might be called Sisters Creek is interesting too; when Danny touches the knob of 237 in a minute, he gets a split-second flash of the Grady twins in his head.
Fans of my Pillars of Hercules theory will recall that this piece seems to play heavily into that subtext (it having to do with “sisters”, rainbows, and red cattle). But also, recall that the Navajo mural (in the adjoining lounge) has a “rainbow Yei” in it, and this painting also features a rainbow.
The painting passes through Wendy’s head as she first tries to distract Danny from Roadrunner and Coyote.
The lyrics of the show’s theme song in this moment are “Roadrunner/The Coyote’s after you/Roadrunner/If he catches you, you’re through”, and trike Danny is performing his third lesson, which corresponds to the escape that leads him to the heart of the maze, where Jack will make the turn that will end his life, essentially. So, while Wendy has the Sisters Creek flowing through her head, trike Danny has After the Bath mirroring into his head, a painting depicting twin children. So there’s all this imagery suggesting that, in order to survive this ordeal…Jack is gonna have to be made dead as a Grady Twin.
This leads me to a theory too complex to want to summarize it over-quickly, but basically I have a theory I call the Tower of Fable, which involves considering that 11 major areas of the Overlook are meant to be understood as one giant 7 x 11-square game board. In studying this phenomenon, I realized that there’s a strong possibility that the rooms along this main hall (rooms 231 to 242) have markers that help the audience understand that the Overlook wanted to absorb the various good characters into rooms on the south side of the hall (238 for Hallorann, 242 for Danny, 236 for Wendy), while it wanted to absorb Jack into room 231. If that theory is correct, then in this moment (which begins at exactly 41:32 and ends at 41:37, remember – 1:32 being like a backwards 231), Danny and Wendy aren’t simply realizing Jack Must Die, but are seeing where his soul will spend eternity.
What’s more – and I’m not sure how rare this is, because I haven’t studied it yet – triking Danny is passing through the same square (F9) on the Overlook game board as the Wendy and Danny on the other side are sitting in, at this moment. Again, I haven’t looked into this as a recurring phenomenon, but perhaps this speaks to everything I was just saying.
Oh, also, I like how lounge and longue have the same letters in them–sorry, couldn’t help pointing that out. Backwards Wendy is about to try to tell Danny about the Battle of the Lounge she’s about to embark on.
Next art reference: A Man of Van Diemen’s Land
MAIN PAGE ⎔ SECTION PAGE ⎔ SITE MAP ⎔ GLOSSARY
OTHER MAIN PAGES FOR SHINING ANALYSIS
THE MIRRORFORM ⎔ THE BEATLES ⎔ THE RUM AND THE RED
BACKGROUND ART ⎔ OVERLOOK PHOTOGRAPHS ⎔ GOLDEN SPIRALS
PHI GRIDS ⎔ PATTERNS ⎔ VIOLENCE AND INDIGENA ⎔ ABSURDITIES
THE STORY ROOM ⎔ ANIMAL SYMBOLS ⎔ THE ANNOTATED SHINING