Bill asked “Does stone and wood also play a metaphorical role in “The Golden Age”? And given all the wood in the ships, is there a metaphor of the ships being organic or transient as well? Does stone play a role? Or has the approach to set design changed for “The Golden Age”?”
Bill, every film suggests it’s own metaphor. In Elizabeth I stood in a 12th Century Cathedral in wonder at the number of people over the centuries that stood in the same place admiring or worshipping in that great stone structure. I could feelk their vibrations. Then the idea of using stone architecture in the high ‘from the ceiling shits emerged. I used stone as a suggestion of the Destiny of the human being, every now and again showing even Elizabeth looking fairly diminutive in context of the stone architecture.
In Bandit Queen I had used the river as the passing through life. Each time the protaganist crossed a certain path in her life, she crossed a river, and the boatman was us. Souls bonded to row in the river of life, but ultimately looking to be free from the cage of the Body.
In Golden Age ? It’s a far more complex equation. I have no used stone as a metaphor of Destiny, nor wood as a metaphor of our organic nature. It deals at it’s deepest subtextual level with idea sof Divinity. Can Divinity be relative, or must it be Absolute ? How Mortal can you remain if you attempt to aspire to be Divine.
So I did not create huge limitations on my Production Designer on this film (The brilliant Guy Dias who just did Superman 3) as I did in the previous one. The ideas of exploration of the conflict between Elizabeth’s Mortal and her Divine being are more explored in her performance than in the design this time around.