“Sweet lovely death, I am waitin’ for your breath. Come, sweet death, one last caress”
– Glenn Danzig
Franz Fiedler (17 February 1885 in Prostějov, Austria-Hungary – 5 February 1956 in Dresden, GDR) was a photographer. This album of c. 1925 comprises gelatin silver prints shows a nude woman playing and flirting with a human skeleton. Images are entitled ‘Narre Tod, Mein Spielgesell’ – ‘Fool Death. My Playmate.’
The ghoulish fun is reminiscent of William Mortensen’s Extraordinary Arts Studies From West Of Zanzibar By William Mortensen (1928) and Edvard Munch’s Experimental Selfies, in which the artists marry life and shadows to create something ghostly – not the excesses of a naked Satanic ritual but not less, dark, erotic and seductive. As Leslie Paul wrote in The Annihilation of Man (1944), “all life is no more than a match struck in the dark and blown out again.” Dance while the sun is shining. And who knows – death might even dance with you.