Art

by

Yasmina Reza

Teachers and parents! Struggling with distance learning? Our Teacher Edition on Art can help.

Marc Character Analysis

An engineer and an intellectual, the pompous Marc is a self-proclaimed aesthete who, somewhat contradictorily, has trouble seeing the meaning in much of modern art. When his friend Serge buys a two-hundred-thousand-franc all-white painting by the obscure artist Antrios, Marc’s world begins to go topsy-turvy as he reckons with the fact that his attempts to educate Serge in the ways of art appreciation and aesthetics have, in his estimation, failed completely. Marc attempts to rope his and Serge’s mutual friend Yvan into the fray, but when the meek, easily-influenced Yvan feels a connection to the painting, Marc grows even more upset. One night, as the three friends prepare to go to dinner, an enormous fight unfolds, and Marc finds himself, Serge, and, to some extent, Yvan locked in a cruel, nasty battle of wits and words. Marc feels “abandoned” by Serge’s choice to buy the Antrios, and must reckon with how deeply his belief that he was acting as a mentor and an influence to Serge formed the crux of his identity. Now that it has been debunked and Serge has struck out on his own in a grandiose way by making such an exorbitant and controversial purchase, Marc feels a void open up inside him as he wrestles with the fact that he may have metaphorically created a monster by leading Serge into his world. Marc is pompous, egoistic, and codependent, and as the play progresses, his arc ties in with themes of cruelty and betrayal as well the nature of art and meaning.

Marc Quotes in Art

The Art quotes below are all either spoken by Marc or refer to Marc. For each quote, you can also see the other characters and themes related to it (each theme is indicated by its own dot and icon, like this one:
Art and Meaning Theme Icon
). Note: all page numbers and citation info for the quotes below refer to the Farrar, Straus and Giroux edition of Art published in 1997.
Scene 1: At Serge’s Quotes

SERGE: My friend Marc’s an intelligent enough fellow, I’ve always valued our relationship, he has a good job, but he’s one of those new-style intellectuals, who are not only enemies of modernism, but seem to take some sort of incomprehensible pride in running it down… In recent years, these nostalgia-merchants have become quite breathtakingly arrogant.

Related Characters: Serge (speaker), Marc
Page Number: 3
Explanation and Analysis:

MARC: It’s a complete mystery to me, Serge buying this painting. It’s unsettled me, it’s filled me with some indefinable unease. When I left his place, I had to take three capsules of Gelsemium 9X which Paula recommended because I couldn’t begin to understand how Serge, my friend, could have bought that picture. Two hundred thousand francs! He’s comfortably off, but he’s hardly rolling in money. Comfortable, no more, just comfortable. And he spends two hundred grand on a white painting. I must go and see Yvan, he’s a friend of ours, I have to discuss this with Yvan. Mind you, Yvan’s a very tolerant bloke, which of course, when it comes to relationships, is the worst thing you can be. Yvan’s very tolerant because he couldn’t care less. If Yvan tolerates the fact that Serge has spent two hundred grand on some piece of white shit, it’s because he couldn’t care less about Serge. Obviously.

Related Characters: Marc (speaker), Serge, Yvan
Related Symbols: The Antrios Painting
Page Number: 4-5
Explanation and Analysis:
Scene 2: At Yvan’s Quotes

YVAN: As long as it’s not doing any harm to anyone else…

MARC: But it is. It’s doing harm to me! I’m disturbed, I’m disturbed, more than that, I’m hurt, yes, I am, I’m fond of Serge, and to see him let himself be ripped off and lose every ounce of discernment through sheer snobbery.

Related Characters: Marc (speaker), Yvan (speaker), Serge
Related Symbols: The Antrios Painting
Page Number: 10
Explanation and Analysis:
Scene 3: At Serge’s Quotes

SERGE: You know Marc’s seen this painting.

YVAN: Oh?

SERGE: Devastated.

YVAN: Oh?

SERGE: He told me it was shit. A completely inappropriate description.

YVAN: Absolutely.

SERGE: You can’t call this shit.

YVAN: No.

SERGE: You can say, I don’t get it, I can’t grasp it, you can’t say “it’s shit.”

YVAN: You’ve seen his place.

SERGE: Nothing to see. It’s like yours, it’s… what I mean is, you couldn’t care less.

Related Characters: Serge (speaker), Yvan (speaker), Marc
Related Symbols: The Antrios Painting
Page Number: 14
Explanation and Analysis:

SERGE: I don't blame him for not responding to this painting, he hasn't the training, there's a whole apprenticeship you have to go through, which he hasn't, either because he's never wanted to or because he has no particular instinct for it, none of that matters, no, what I blame him for is his tone of voice, his complacency, his tactlessness. I blame him for his insensitivity. I don't blame him for not being interested in modern Art, I couldn’t give a toss about that, I like him for other reasons . . .

YVAN: And he likes you!

SERGE: No, no, no, no, I felt it the other day, a kind of . . . a kind of condescension . . . contempt with a really bitter edge...

YVAN: No, surely not!

SERGE: Oh, yes! Don’t keep trying to smooth things over. Where d'you get this urge to be the great reconciler of the human race?! Why don't you admit that Marc is atrophying? If he hasn't already atrophied.

Related Characters: Serge (speaker), Yvan (speaker), Marc
Related Symbols: The Antrios Painting
Page Number: 15
Explanation and Analysis:
Scene 4: At Marc’s Quotes

MARC: He wasn't laughing because his painting is ridiculous, you and he weren't laughing for the same reasons, you were laughing at the painting and he was laughing to ingratiate himself, to put himself on your wavelength, to show you that on top of being an aesthete who can spend more on a painting than you earn in a year, he's still your same old subversive mate who likes a good laugh.

YVAN: Mm hm… You know. . .

MARC: Yes...

YVAN: This is going to amaze you…

MARC: Go on. . .

YVAN: I didn't like the painting . . . but I didn't actually hate it.

MARC: Well, of course. You can’t hate what's invisible, you can't hate nothing.

YVAN: No, no, it has something . . .

MARC: What do you mean?

YVAN: It has something. It's not nothing.

Related Characters: Marc (speaker), Yvan (speaker), Serge
Related Symbols: The Antrios Painting
Page Number: 17
Explanation and Analysis:

MARC: Why do I have to be so categorical? What possible difference can it make to me, if Serge lets himself be taken in by modern Art? I mean, it is a serious matter. But I could have found some other way to put it to him. I could have taken a less aggressive tone. Even if it makes me physically ill that my best friend has bought a white painting, all the same I ought to avoid attacking him about it. I ought to be nice to him. From now on, I’m on my best behavior.

Related Characters: Marc (speaker), Serge
Related Symbols: The Antrios Painting
Page Number: 20
Explanation and Analysis:
Scene 5: At Serge’s Quotes

SERGE: He is getting on my nerves. It's true. He's getting on my nerves. It's this ingratiating tone of voice. A little smile behind every word. It's as if he's forcing himself to be pleasant. Don't be pleasant, whatever you do, don't be pleasant! Could it be buying the Antrios? . . . Could buying the Antrios have triggered off this feeling of constraint between us? Buying something. . . without his backing? . . . Well, bugger his backing! Bugger your backing, Marc!

Related Characters: Serge (speaker), Marc
Related Symbols: The Antrios Painting
Page Number: 26
Explanation and Analysis:

MARC: Could it be the Antrios, buying the Antrios? No—It started some time ago… To be precise, it started on the day we were discussing some work of art and you uttered, quite seriously, the word deconstruction. It wasn’t so much the word deconstruction which upset me, it was the air of solemnity you imbued it with. You said, humorlessly, unapologetically, without a trace of irony, the word deconstruction, you, my friend. I wasn’t sure how best to deal with the situation, so I made this throwaway remark, and I said I think I must be getting intolerant, and you answered, who do you think you are?

What gives you the right to set yourself apart, Serge answered in the bloodiest possible way. And quite unexpectedly. You’re just Marc, what makes you think you’re so special? That day, I should have punched him in the mouth. And when he was lying there on the ground, half-dead, I should have said to him, what sort of friend are you, Serge, if you don’t think your friends are special?

Related Characters: Marc (speaker), Serge
Related Symbols: The Antrios Painting
Page Number: 27
Explanation and Analysis:

SERGE: There’s no problem, except for you, because you take pride in your desire to shut yourself off from humanity. And you’ll never manage it. It’s like you’re in quicksand, the more you struggle to get out of it, the deeper you sink.

Related Characters: Serge (speaker), Marc
Related Symbols: The Antrios Painting
Page Number: 38
Explanation and Analysis:

YVAN: “If I’m who I am because I’m who I am and you’re who you are because you’re who you are, then I’m who I am and you’re who you are. If, on the other hand, I’m who I am because you’re who you are, and if you’re who you are because I am who I am, then I’m not who I am and you’re not who you are…” You see why I had to write it down.

Related Characters: Yvan (speaker), Marc, Serge
Page Number: 41-42
Explanation and Analysis:

MARC: It’s true I can’t imagine you genuinely loving that painting.

YVAN: But why?

MARC: Because I love Serge and I can’t love the Serge who’s capable of buying that painting.

SERGE: Why do you say buying, why don’t you say loving?

MARC: Because I can’t say loving, I can’t believe loving.

SERGE: So why would I buy it, if I didn’t love it?

MARC: That’s the nub of the question.

SERGE: (to YVAN) See how smug he is! All I’m doing is teasing him, and his answer is this serenely pompous heavy hint! And it never crossed your mind, [Marc,] for a second, however improbably it might seem, that I might really love it and that your vicious, inflexible opinions and your disgusting assumption[s] might be hurtful to me?

MARC: No.

Related Characters: Marc (speaker), Serge (speaker), Yvan (speaker)
Related Symbols: The Antrios Painting
Page Number: 45
Explanation and Analysis:

MARC: Do you think what you just said about Paula?

SERGE: Worse, actually.

MARC: Worse, Serge? Worse than repellent?

SERGE: Aha! When it’s something that concerns you personally, I see words can bite a little deeper!

MARC: Serge, will you explain how someone can be worse than repellent…

SERGE: No need to take that frosty tone. Perhaps it’s—let me try and answer you—perhaps it’s the way she waves away cigarette smoke. What appears to you a gesture of no significance, what you think of as a harmless gesture is in fact the opposite, and the way she waves away cigarette smoke sits right at the heart of her repellentness.

Related Characters: Marc (speaker), Serge (speaker)
Related Symbols: The Antrios Painting
Page Number: 46
Explanation and Analysis:

MARC: There was a time you were proud to be my friend… You congratulated yourself on my peculiarity, on my taste for standing apart. You enjoyed exhibiting me untamed to your circle, you, whose life was so normal. I was your alibi. But…eventually, I supposed, that sort of affection dries up… Belatedly, you claim your independence. But I detest your independence. Its violence. You’ve abandoned me. I’ve been betrayed. As far as I’m concerned, you’re a traitor.

SERGE (to YVAN): If I understand correctly, he was my mentor! And if I loved you as my mentor…what was the nature of your feelings?

MARC: I enjoyed your admiration. I was flattered. I was always grateful to you for thinking of me as a man apart. I even thought being a man apart was a somehow superior condition, until one day you pointed out to me that it wasn’t.

SERGE: This is very alarming.

MARC: It’s the truth.

Related Characters: Marc (speaker), Serge (speaker)
Related Symbols: The Antrios Painting
Page Number: 52
Explanation and Analysis:

SERGE: Why can’t you learn to love people for themselves, Marc?

MARC: What does that mean, for themselves?

SERGE: For what they are.

MARC: But what are they?! What are they?! Apart from my faith in them I’m desperate to find a friend who has some kind of prior existence. So far, I’ve had no luck. I’ve had to mold you… But you see, it never works. There comes a day when your creature goes off and buys a white painting.

Related Characters: Marc (speaker), Serge (speaker)
Related Symbols: The Antrios Painting
Page Number: 54
Explanation and Analysis:

YVAN: I’m not like you, I don’t want to be an authority figure, I don’t want to be a point of reference, I don’t want to be self-sufficient, I just want to be your friend Yvan the joker! Yvan the joker!

SERGE: Could we try to steer clear of pathos?

YVAN: I’ve finished. Haven’t you got any nibbles? Anything, just to stop from passing out.

SERGE: I have some olives.

YVAN: Hand them over.

Serge reaches for a little bowl of olives and hands it to him.

SERGE (to MARC): Want some?

Marc nods. Yvan hands him the bowl. They eat olives.

Related Characters: Marc (speaker), Serge (speaker), Yvan (speaker)
Page Number: 59
Explanation and Analysis:
Scene 6: At Serge’s Quotes

YVAN: The day after the wedding, at the Montparnasse cemetery Catherine put a bouquet and a bag of sugared almonds on her mother’s grave. In the evening, thinking about this tribute, I started sobbing in my bed. I absolutely must speak to Finkelzohn about my tendency to cry, I cry all the time, it’s not normal for someone my age. It started, or at least revealed itself at Serge’s, the evening of the white painting. After Serge, in an act of pure madness, had demonstrated to Marc that he cared more about him than he did about his painting, we went and had dinner. Over dinner, Serge and Marc took the decision to try to rebuild a relationship destroyed by word and deed. One of them used to expression “trial period” and I burst into tears. I can no longer bear any kind of rational argument, nothing formative in the world, nothing great or beautiful in the world has ever been born of rational argument.

Related Characters: Yvan (speaker), Marc, Serge
Related Symbols: The Antrios Painting
Page Number: 61-62
Explanation and Analysis:

SERGE: When Marc and I succeeded in obliterating the skier, with the aid of Swiss soap with added ox gall, recommended by Paula, I looked at the Antrios and turned to Marc:

“Did you know ink from felt-tips was washable?”

“No,” Marc said… “No, did you?”

“No,” I said, very fast, lying. I came within an inch of saying yes, I did know. But how could I have launched our trial period with such a disappointing admission? On the other hand, was it right to start with a lie? A lie! Let’s be reasonable. Why am I so absurdly virtuous? Why does my relationship with Marc have to be so complicated?

Related Characters: Serge (speaker), Marc
Related Symbols: The Antrios Painting
Page Number: 62-63
Explanation and Analysis:

MARC: Under the white clouds, the snow is falling. You can’t see the white clouds, or the snow. Or the cold, or the white glow of the earth. A solitary man glides downhill on his skis. The snow is falling. It falls until the man disappears back into the landscape.

My friend Serge, who’s one of my oldest friends, has bought a painting. It’s a canvas about five foot by four. It represents a man who moves across a space and disappears.

Related Characters: Marc (speaker), Serge
Related Symbols: The Antrios Painting
Page Number: 63
Explanation and Analysis:
Get the entire Art LitChart as a printable PDF.
Art PDF

Marc Character Timeline in Art

The timeline below shows where the character Marc appears in Art. The colored dots and icons indicate which themes are associated with that appearance.
Scene 1: At Serge’s
Art and Meaning Theme Icon
Ego, Competition, and Masculinity Theme Icon
Friendship and Codependence Theme Icon
Marc, alone on stage, addresses the audience. He explains that his friend Serge has recently bought... (full context)
Art and Meaning Theme Icon
Ego, Competition, and Masculinity Theme Icon
At Serge’s house, the white painting sits at floor level. Serge looks at it excitedly. Marc looks at the painting, too, and Serge looks at Marc as Marc looks at the... (full context)
Art and Meaning Theme Icon
Ego, Competition, and Masculinity Theme Icon
Friendship and Codependence Theme Icon
Cruelty and Betrayal Theme Icon
Serge asks Marc what he thinks of the painting, but Marc does not answer. Serge suggests Marc look... (full context)
Art and Meaning Theme Icon
Ego, Competition, and Masculinity Theme Icon
Friendship and Codependence Theme Icon
Serge steps forward and addresses the audience. He tells them that Marc is “intelligent enough”—he is an aeronautical engineer—and that while Serge has always treasured Marc’s friendship,... (full context)
Art and Meaning Theme Icon
Ego, Competition, and Masculinity Theme Icon
Friendship and Codependence Theme Icon
Cruelty and Betrayal Theme Icon
Enraged, Serge asks Marc what he means by “shit.” Marc urges Serge to have a sense of humor. Serge... (full context)
Art and Meaning Theme Icon
Ego, Competition, and Masculinity Theme Icon
Friendship and Codependence Theme Icon
Cruelty and Betrayal Theme Icon
Serge steps forward again. It’s fine, he says, that Marc doesn’t like the painting, but what hurts Serge is the way in which Marc reacted... (full context)
Art and Meaning Theme Icon
Ego, Competition, and Masculinity Theme Icon
Friendship and Codependence Theme Icon
Marc steps forward and addresses the audience. He explains that he is both mystified and unsettled... (full context)
Art and Meaning Theme Icon
Ego, Competition, and Masculinity Theme Icon
Friendship and Codependence Theme Icon
Cruelty and Betrayal Theme Icon
Marc says that he must go see Yvan, a mutual friend of his and Serge’s, and... (full context)
Scene 2: At Yvan’s
Art and Meaning Theme Icon
Ego, Competition, and Masculinity Theme Icon
Marc enters Yvan’s flat, and asks what he is doing. Yvan explains that he is looking... (full context)
Friendship and Codependence Theme Icon
Marc asks Yvan if he plans to stay in the flat once he marries his fiancée... (full context)
Art and Meaning Theme Icon
Ego, Competition, and Masculinity Theme Icon
Friendship and Codependence Theme Icon
Marc asks Yvan if he has seen Serge lately. Yvan says he hasn’t, and Marc reveals... (full context)
Art and Meaning Theme Icon
Ego, Competition, and Masculinity Theme Icon
Friendship and Codependence Theme Icon
Yvan asks Marc to calm down. Marc tells Yvan to let him finish, and then asks Yvan how... (full context)
Art and Meaning Theme Icon
Ego, Competition, and Masculinity Theme Icon
Friendship and Codependence Theme Icon
Cruelty and Betrayal Theme Icon
...and if he can afford it, then there’s no harm in his having bought it. Marc is upset that Yvan cannot see the seriousness of the situation. Marc points out that... (full context)
Art and Meaning Theme Icon
Ego, Competition, and Masculinity Theme Icon
Friendship and Codependence Theme Icon
Yvan tells Marc that Serge has always been an exhibition freak. Marc counters that once Serge had a... (full context)
Scene 3: At Serge’s
Art and Meaning Theme Icon
Friendship and Codependence Theme Icon
Cruelty and Betrayal Theme Icon
...looks sparse and monastic. Serge laughs, and agrees. Serge then asks if Yvan has seen Marc lately—Yvan lies, and says he hasn’t. Serge volunteers that he saw Marc a few days... (full context)
Art and Meaning Theme Icon
Ego, Competition, and Masculinity Theme Icon
Friendship and Codependence Theme Icon
Cruelty and Betrayal Theme Icon
Serge tells Yvan conspiratorially that Marc has seen the painting, and was “devastated” by it. He reveals that Marc described the... (full context)
Art and Meaning Theme Icon
Ego, Competition, and Masculinity Theme Icon
Friendship and Codependence Theme Icon
Cruelty and Betrayal Theme Icon
Serge tells Yvan that he doesn’t blame Marc for not reacting well to the painting—Marc has not gone through the “apprenticeship” one needs... (full context)
Scene 4: At Marc’s
Art and Meaning Theme Icon
Ego, Competition, and Masculinity Theme Icon
Friendship and Codependence Theme Icon
Cruelty and Betrayal Theme Icon
On the wall of Marc’s flat there is a painting of a landscape seen through a window. Yvan and Marc... (full context)
Art and Meaning Theme Icon
Ego, Competition, and Masculinity Theme Icon
Friendship and Codependence Theme Icon
Cruelty and Betrayal Theme Icon
Marc argues that Serge was not laughing because his painting was ridiculous—he was laughing to “ingratiate”... (full context)
Art and Meaning Theme Icon
Ego, Competition, and Masculinity Theme Icon
Friendship and Codependence Theme Icon
Cruelty and Betrayal Theme Icon
Yvan tells Marc that he’s getting bitter, and that it’s unattractive. Marc tells Yvan that he hopes to... (full context)
Art and Meaning Theme Icon
Ego, Competition, and Masculinity Theme Icon
...argues that he would not like the paining if it were white. The flaw in Marc’s thinking, Serge says, is that Marc believes the painting to be white. Yvan, on the... (full context)
Art and Meaning Theme Icon
Ego, Competition, and Masculinity Theme Icon
Friendship and Codependence Theme Icon
Cruelty and Betrayal Theme Icon
Marc steps forward, and, alone in his own monologue, wonders aloud why he is so bothered... (full context)
Scene 5: At Serge’s
Art and Meaning Theme Icon
Ego, Competition, and Masculinity Theme Icon
Friendship and Codependence Theme Icon
Marc and Serge are at Serge’s apartment. Serge tells Marc that Yvan liked the Antrios. Marc... (full context)
Art and Meaning Theme Icon
Ego, Competition, and Masculinity Theme Icon
Friendship and Codependence Theme Icon
Cruelty and Betrayal Theme Icon
Marc jokes that this is evident from Serge’s choice of a painting that eliminates form and... (full context)
Ego, Competition, and Masculinity Theme Icon
Friendship and Codependence Theme Icon
Cruelty and Betrayal Theme Icon
Marc points out that he is “capable of being really annoyed” by Serge’s telling him to... (full context)
Art and Meaning Theme Icon
Ego, Competition, and Masculinity Theme Icon
Friendship and Codependence Theme Icon
Marc asks Serge where he is planning to hang the painting. Serge says he hasn’t decided.... (full context)
Art and Meaning Theme Icon
Ego, Competition, and Masculinity Theme Icon
Friendship and Codependence Theme Icon
Cruelty and Betrayal Theme Icon
Marc tells Serge that he thought Serge referred to “the artist” as if he were a... (full context)
Art and Meaning Theme Icon
Ego, Competition, and Masculinity Theme Icon
Friendship and Codependence Theme Icon
Cruelty and Betrayal Theme Icon
Serge steps forward and addresses the audience. He admits that Marc is, in fact, getting on his nerves—the tone of Marc’s voice is ingratiating and irritating,... (full context)
Art and Meaning Theme Icon
Ego, Competition, and Masculinity Theme Icon
Friendship and Codependence Theme Icon
Cruelty and Betrayal Theme Icon
Marc steps forward and addresses the audience. He, too, wonders whether the purchase of the Antrios... (full context)
Ego, Competition, and Masculinity Theme Icon
Friendship and Codependence Theme Icon
...brief “mini-drama” with Catherine, he left the house to come meet the two of them. Marc asks Yvan why he lets himself be bossed around by so many women. Serge tells... (full context)
Ego, Competition, and Masculinity Theme Icon
Friendship and Codependence Theme Icon
Cruelty and Betrayal Theme Icon
Serge and Marc begin fighting about Serge’s use of the words “masterpiece” and “modern.” Marc takes issue with... (full context)
Friendship and Codependence Theme Icon
Cruelty and Betrayal Theme Icon
...enough abuse for one day, and will go home if the two don’t stop it. Marc asks Yvan where his sense of humor is, and leadingly questions Yvan as to whether... (full context)
Art and Meaning Theme Icon
Ego, Competition, and Masculinity Theme Icon
Friendship and Codependence Theme Icon
Cruelty and Betrayal Theme Icon
...Serge counters that his Antrios is not white. “Of course not,” Yvan says, conciliatorily agreeing. Marc jumps down Yvan’s throat, asking him to say what color he thinks the painting is... (full context)
Ego, Competition, and Masculinity Theme Icon
Friendship and Codependence Theme Icon
Cruelty and Betrayal Theme Icon
Marc asks Yvan how he could, in front of him, describe the colors as touching. Yvan... (full context)
Ego, Competition, and Masculinity Theme Icon
Friendship and Codependence Theme Icon
Cruelty and Betrayal Theme Icon
Marc and Serge debate what it means to be “a man of one’s time.” Serge argues... (full context)
Ego, Competition, and Masculinity Theme Icon
Friendship and Codependence Theme Icon
Cruelty and Betrayal Theme Icon
Marc, realizing that meeting up this evening was a bad idea, suggests he himself take his... (full context)
Art and Meaning Theme Icon
Ego, Competition, and Masculinity Theme Icon
Friendship and Codependence Theme Icon
Cruelty and Betrayal Theme Icon
After a brief silence, Marc apologizes again for upsetting Yvan. Serge reveals that the painting of Yvan’s that Marc insulted... (full context)
Ego, Competition, and Masculinity Theme Icon
Friendship and Codependence Theme Icon
Cruelty and Betrayal Theme Icon
...thinking about how he’d like to return to Serge’s flat with a gun and blow Marc’s head off for calling him an amoeba. Once at the ground floor, however, Yvan realized... (full context)
Ego, Competition, and Masculinity Theme Icon
Friendship and Codependence Theme Icon
Cruelty and Betrayal Theme Icon
Yvan tells Marc and Serge that just the other day he was discussing the two of them with... (full context)
Ego, Competition, and Masculinity Theme Icon
Friendship and Codependence Theme Icon
Cruelty and Betrayal Theme Icon
Marc sarcastically tells Yvan that he is a “lucky man” to be getting advice from Finkelzohn.... (full context)
Art and Meaning Theme Icon
Friendship and Codependence Theme Icon
Cruelty and Betrayal Theme Icon
...suggests they all change the subject—he has no interest in discussing the painting any further. Marc accuses Serge of being touchy, but Serge argues that he is simply exhausted—and, frankly, is... (full context)
Art and Meaning Theme Icon
Ego, Competition, and Masculinity Theme Icon
Friendship and Codependence Theme Icon
Cruelty and Betrayal Theme Icon
...but Serge tells Yvan he is only “adding fuel to the fire” by behaving self-righteously. Marc takes one of his anti-anxiety supplements. Seized by a sudden impulse, Serge picks the Antrios... (full context)
Art and Meaning Theme Icon
Ego, Competition, and Masculinity Theme Icon
Friendship and Codependence Theme Icon
Cruelty and Betrayal Theme Icon
Serge asks Marc what he does give a fuck about, and Marc replies that he cares about Serge’s... (full context)
Art and Meaning Theme Icon
Ego, Competition, and Masculinity Theme Icon
Friendship and Codependence Theme Icon
Cruelty and Betrayal Theme Icon
Serge asks Marc if he ever considered that Serge truly loved the painting, and that his words might... (full context)
Ego, Competition, and Masculinity Theme Icon
Friendship and Codependence Theme Icon
Cruelty and Betrayal Theme Icon
Marc asks Serge how someone can be “worse than repellent,” and Serge references the way Marc’s... (full context)
Ego, Competition, and Masculinity Theme Icon
Friendship and Codependence Theme Icon
Cruelty and Betrayal Theme Icon
In trying to strike each other, Marc or Serge—it is unclear who—strikes Yvan. Yvan removes himself from the struggle, groaning and clutching... (full context)
Ego, Competition, and Masculinity Theme Icon
Friendship and Codependence Theme Icon
Cruelty and Betrayal Theme Icon
Marc asks Serge why he wouldn’t have told him at the time how much he hated... (full context)
Ego, Competition, and Masculinity Theme Icon
Friendship and Codependence Theme Icon
Cruelty and Betrayal Theme Icon
Serge points out that while he does not like Paula, he does not resent Marc for spending time with Paula; whereas Marc does not like the Antrios and resents Serge... (full context)
Ego, Competition, and Masculinity Theme Icon
Friendship and Codependence Theme Icon
Cruelty and Betrayal Theme Icon
Marc tells Serge that back when he judged things by Marc’s standards, he never would have... (full context)
Art and Meaning Theme Icon
Ego, Competition, and Masculinity Theme Icon
Friendship and Codependence Theme Icon
Cruelty and Betrayal Theme Icon
Serge asks Marc if Marc thought he was Serge’s mentor—Marc says that he did. If he loved Marc... (full context)
Art and Meaning Theme Icon
Ego, Competition, and Masculinity Theme Icon
Friendship and Codependence Theme Icon
Cruelty and Betrayal Theme Icon
...to make up—there is still time to salvage the evening and enjoy one another’s company. Marc admits that the deterioration of his and Serge’s relationship is his own fault—he has pulled... (full context)
Ego, Competition, and Masculinity Theme Icon
Friendship and Codependence Theme Icon
Cruelty and Betrayal Theme Icon
Serge asks Marc why he can’t just love people for who they are. Marc asks who friends even... (full context)
Ego, Competition, and Masculinity Theme Icon
Friendship and Codependence Theme Icon
Cruelty and Betrayal Theme Icon
Marc tells Yvan that he cannot stand Yvan’s desire to put Marc and Serge on the... (full context)
Friendship and Codependence Theme Icon
Cruelty and Betrayal Theme Icon
...accuses Yvan of fucking up the evening—Yvan is outraged. He asks how he ruined things. Marc reminds him that he arrived nearly an hour late, did not apologize for his tardiness,... (full context)
Ego, Competition, and Masculinity Theme Icon
Friendship and Codependence Theme Icon
Cruelty and Betrayal Theme Icon
Yvan, overwhelmed by his friends’ piling on him, says he could burst into tears. Marc and Serge both urge him to go ahead and cry. Marc points out that Yvan... (full context)
Ego, Competition, and Masculinity Theme Icon
Friendship and Codependence Theme Icon
Cruelty and Betrayal Theme Icon
...their friendship for the last fifteen years, only to be left “solitary as a rat.” Marc tells Yvan to stop getting himself worked up into a state. Yvan tells Marc that... (full context)
Art and Meaning Theme Icon
Ego, Competition, and Masculinity Theme Icon
Friendship and Codependence Theme Icon
Cruelty and Betrayal Theme Icon
...laughing uncontrollably, and calls the painting a piece of white shit, and an “insane” purchase. Marc begins to laugh, too. Serge leaves the room and returns with the Antrios. He asks... (full context)
Art and Meaning Theme Icon
Ego, Competition, and Masculinity Theme Icon
Friendship and Codependence Theme Icon
Cruelty and Betrayal Theme Icon
...marker, examines its tip, then puts the top back on. He throws the pen to Marc, and urges him to “go on.” Marc doesn’t move. Serge urges him more firmly. Marc... (full context)
Art and Meaning Theme Icon
Ego, Competition, and Masculinity Theme Icon
Friendship and Codependence Theme Icon
Marc leans toward the painting and draws along one of the faint diagonal lines. Serge does... (full context)
Scene 6: At Serge’s
Art and Meaning Theme Icon
Ego, Competition, and Masculinity Theme Icon
Friendship and Codependence Theme Icon
...dinner, the men are back at Serge’s apartment. The Antrios hangs on the back wall. Marc is in front of it with a basin of water into which Serge is dipping... (full context)
Art and Meaning Theme Icon
Ego, Competition, and Masculinity Theme Icon
Friendship and Codependence Theme Icon
Cruelty and Betrayal Theme Icon
...act of pure madness,” at last proved once and for all that he cared about Marc more than the painting by letting him draw on it, the three of them went... (full context)
Art and Meaning Theme Icon
Ego, Competition, and Masculinity Theme Icon
Friendship and Codependence Theme Icon
Cruelty and Betrayal Theme Icon
...painting once more before turning to address the audience. He reveals that after he and Marc had, at long last, succeeded in “obliterating” the skier, he asked Marc whether Marc had... (full context)
Art and Meaning Theme Icon
Ego, Competition, and Masculinity Theme Icon
Friendship and Codependence Theme Icon
The stage lights narrow on the Antrios. Marc approaches the painting. He describes it gently. Under white clouds, he says, snow is falling—though... (full context)