SaturdayThings

The story of the “bad” picture, maddening 

There is a syndrome of Stendhal, according to which art can influence a person and drive him crazy. So, people who look at certain pictures feel worse, panic and hallucinations begin, there is a desire to destroy the work. Most often, the syndrome manifests itself in galleries in impressionable people, or when trying to get acquainted with too many paintings in a short period of time.
For the first time this syndrome was described by the French writer Stendal in 1817 during a trip to Florence. According to him, when he left the Church of the Holy Cross, where Machiavelli, Michelangelo and Galileo were buried, the writer’s heart beat, it seemed to him that the source of life had dried up, he was walking, afraid to fall to the ground. 160 years later, in 1970, the psychiatrist of the Florentine hospital Graciella Magerini, noticed that many tourists panic and for several days can not recover after a trip to Florence. She recalled that Stendhal had similar symptoms, and called this condition “Stendhal syndrome”.
It is said that this syndrome causes the picture of the American artist Bill Stoneham ” The Hands Resist Him “. It depicts a boy and a doll girl, in the background is a glass door, to which 11 small hands are pressed from the outside. According to the author, in the picture he depicted himself at the age of five years. The door symbolizes the border between reality and the world of dreams, the doll is a conductor in the other world. Hands represent alternative lives, opportunities. They say that this picture causes a sense of fear and panic, and strange things happen in the house where it is located.
The picture immediately became popular. In 1972 she was an exhibit at various exhibitions. It was then that it was noticed that the picture affects the psyche of the public. Visitors became nervous, aggressive; the guards often had to forcibly take people out of the hall. The artist did not see anything strange in his work. Inspired by the success of his work, he wrote two more paintings and filled them with the same thought and atmosphere. Thus the trilogy turned out, but only the painting “Hands Resist It” was popular. A year later, it was bought by the owner of the Los Angeles Times newspaper, who soon, unexpectedly for everyone, began to preach Islam. Then the picture somehow turned out to be the actor John Marley . In 1984, he died, and the work of art was thrown into the dustbin.
“Hands resist him” found a couple and hung a terrible picture in the room of a four-year daughter. On the first night, a girl, horrified and with tears in her eyes, ran to her parents’ room, shouting that “the boy and the girl in the picture are fighting”. The adults did not react to the girl’s words until she again ran to their bedroom with the story that the children had left the picture. In the nursery, a surveillance camera was installed that reacted to the movements, although it could not capture them.
The picture disappeared again. After 15 years, it was put up for an online auction. The seller began to write with threats that he removed the picture, because she has a bad reputation. In the description of the item sold, they added: “Viewing the picture has bad consequences.” This raised demand and “Hands Resist It” sold for $ 1,025, instead of the original $ 199.
It is unlikely that Bill Stoneham intentionally attributed such a legend to his work – he once sold it for a small amount and did not receive the money after an online auction. Rumors about the picture is hardly allowed intentionally. We cannot argue that she is damned, but the fact that it became creepy for people is a fact. Where is the picture now – is unknown.

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