Glossary for a Game in Hell

2017



Poetry book, edition of 12 plus artist's proof. Video and sound.
Book: 14 x 20 cm, 24 pages

Video channel: 13:27:00
Audio channel: 42:25:00




The publication was made as a part of my residency at PRAKSIS, Oslo, For a Rainy Day — Publishing as a Site of Collectivisation. During the course of the residency we were working with Guttormsgaards Arkiv, where I discovered the original 1914 print of a Russian poem book A Game in Hell — written by Aleksei Kruchenykh and Velimir Khlebnikov, and illustrated by Olga Rozanova.

Working in collaboration with poet Gleb Simonov we picked 22 words from the poem and wrote a short poem for each of those words, placing them in a contemporary context. The result is the book — a collection of 22 cards with a short free verse stanza on each.






In the exhibition, the book was shown in an installation setting with the video of the original book (flipping through every page) as recorded at Guttormsgaards Arkiv, and an audio recording of the original poem in Russian.






The original book A Game in Hell was a collaborative project between poets Alexander Kruchenykh and Velimir Khlebnikov, and artist Olga Rozanova. The book was made out of bound lithograph prints. The plot of the poem is built around a card game between the devils and the human souls in what is, presumably, hell.






"The Glossary for a Game in Hell can be read as a literary work, and it is also a game:
The cards can be used to tell fortune. In case of a political or social question, simply pick one of the cards at random. The card would tell you a prophecy that would not make sense for 100 years."

 

— Excerpt from the introduction