in ramallah, running 2010 [excerpt], in ‘translated by’ 15.01.11 – 09.02.11


Translated By

15.01.2011 – 09.02.2011

Architectural Association Gallery

36 Bedford Square, London WC1B 3ES

Private view event on 14 January  6.30–8.30

Curators Charles Arsène-Henry and Shumon Basar

You’ve entered the room. It looks empty, silent. Vinyl text on the wall, like an album track-listing. Writers’ names instead of bands.
You’ve been given a black pamphlet and an electronic device connected to a pair of headphones.
You’ll put them on. Pick a number. Press play. You look for the same number on the walls. You find it. Next to it, an image. Beside there is a seat. You sit. On a beat up office chair dredged from a river. You listen. And you start travelling. You’re on Atlantic Avenue, between Nevins and Third. It’s Brooklyn. 1971.
The voice stops. You go for another track, another chair, a different place. Now on a little stool, you follow a six-year-old girl’s voice in your ears. You’re lost in the Sheraton Hotel. An Aztec spaceship in Doha’s desert.
It will last for 11 tracks. Through Tripoli, Brixton, Ramallah. Sofia, The Metaverse. Ardennes forest. A garden.
Until West Vancouver. Where the world is ending.

NB I have a text, a small excerpt from In Ramallah, Running 2010, in this show and publication in happy company… details to follow.

I’ll also update during January 2011 with news on the book itself as it progresses towards publication which is now scheduled for October 2011.

on admiring a writer like marguerite young

I’m posting this as a note; part a/ so that I have to come back with a part b/…

She flitted through my mind, old interviews and some of my own early wonderment [triggered by a 1989 issue of the often useful Review of Contemporary Fiction, in this case one dedicated to MY, Kathy Acker and Christine Brooke-Rose] at her and her work, never quite resolved [mostly available in Dalkey Archive Press].

If the words US, 20th C. and utopian spirit don’t work in your mind -cults don’t count- then you ought to get to know MY…

That edition of RCF’s interview is here; “…abandoned utopias. I would say my theme has always been paradise lost, always the lost cause, the lost leader, the lost utopia.”

For now then, a fan page of photographs [why not?!] here.

And a Paris Review interview from 1977 is here

New editions of her books available in the UK today start at 0.1p… and $0.40 in the US; an unequivocally good sign!

UPDATE 5 Sep 2022!

She understood that all truly ambitious literary projects will unsettle the reading public and are, by their very nature, doomed to teeter on the brink of failure. “I think anyone who tries anything real—think Proust or Dostoevsky—risks being an absolute fool,” she told Charles Ruas in 1977, and she took this pitfall as a kind of dare: “But if you’re mistaken, be terribly mistaken!” I believe that Young was not mistaken. With Miss MacIntosh she succeeded in executing what I consider to be an entirely original vision, though her intent has often been neglected and misunderstood.’

I am avoiding elaborating my own thoughts by shamelessly linking you to the Introduction by MEGHAN O’GIEBLYN to the new DAP edition of Miss Macintosh, My Darling that was recently published online by N+1:

LINK: More Is More

PDF: More Is More | Online Only | n+1 | Meghan O’Gieblyn Sorry, have removed the PDF immediately, since everyone is linking to it not the online page! Will post when the link gives up…?

godard’s film socialisme [two], patti smith’s on board…

Click on still to enlarge

I loved Godard’s new film on a first screening, with it’s refining of his late style towards pure -open/ambiguous- image [and away from the courts of filmedbook and bookedfilm]. I love it even more for having provoked grown boys to walk out of the screening at Cannes annoyed at the ‘lack’ of American cinematic narrative and even the abbreviated subtitles/quotes -so sure are they of the reliability of the English language in an age of peasprocess and warterror. It’s genuinely funny to observe what  upsets people like this when their expectations have sedimented so completely and they’re forced to face it.

In general I’m bored by cameo appearances in clever films by unlikely-but-credible people, yet Patti Smith [who is fallible too, btw] being on board for Godard’s mystifying journey was a real surprise and therefore to be celebrated. I look forward to Film Socialisme getting a good run at its London launch -ha! Godard says it’s his last film; not so funny.

Jonathan Romney is solid and true as ever in a short description for the LFF here. Or Gabe Klinger from Sight and Sound here.

The Village Voice ran a good piece here; “if you care about a living cinema, a cinema that asserts a blistering, confounding present even as it freights the past, then you should not be walking out on Jean-Luc Godard.”

More to come…

on the use of strawberries and [not even] carnations, gaza one

The Guardian’s Harriet Sherwood continues to report with clear-eyed vigour from Palestine. Her latest piece on Dashed Hopes, the collective updating of an earlier report by 21 International charities about the reality of life under siege in Gaza is profoundly shocking. It is mortifying. No, it’s revolting. Even so it might overstate the generosity of the state of Israel’s collective punishment, now in its fourth year.

HS writes that amongst other horrifying stats [“35% of Gaza’s farmland and 85% of maritime areas for fishing remains restricted by the Israeli ‘buffer zone’”], the only exports allowed by the Occupation are strawberries and carnations and those only to Europe. But perhaps not! The report, to which I urge you to link to [PRESS or for a pdf], states “except for the humanitarian activity of exporting a small amount of strawberries, not a single truck of exports has left Gaza since the ‘easing until now’.”

In any case, Gaza is populated almost entirely by refugees from the ethnic cleansing of the plains of Palestine in 1948. More than 60 years later, the offending party is able Continue reading “on the use of strawberries and [not even] carnations, gaza one”