Thursday, December 8, 2011

Aimless Reading: The P's, Part 40 (Gabriel Pomerand)

Saint ghetto of the loans       grimoire
Pomerand, Gabriel 
Saint ghetto of the loans       grimoire

Sent to me by the publisher, Ugly Duckling Presse.

This Lettrist work was translated and published as part of the Lost Literature Series, one of the many great imprints of UDP. I can remember reading about the Isidore Isou and the lettrists for the first time in Greil Marcus' Lipstrick Traces, which attempts create a lineage for early British punk rock by drawing a line backwards from the Sex Pistols through various avant garde movements including Situationism, Lettrism and Dada.

It was a somewhat frustrating book to read because at the time I read it, 1992 or so, almost nothing of these movements was in print. I found one book by Guy Debord, and Robert Motherwell's book on Dada, but nothing on Isou or the lettrists, and little or nothing on any of the other avant gardists Marcus mentions in the book. So for some years Marcus book was my only real source for information.

He must have sparked a lot of interest, however, as the last twenty years have seen more and more of these works into print.

from Saint ghetto of the loans          grimoire

This book is unusual and immobile, yet orderly as a caste.
          I'd love it if, in the future, the organic world showed such an icy face, impassive and tought.

          We're the new Egyptians.
          Everywhere, people are building pyramids.
          I dream of a book of mysteries equal to the arrogance and serenity in faces carved on pharaoh's mummies.

          I've dug out from nothingness each of the signs that make up this work, like one obliged to invent wisdom. Impassive Brahman, thus do I picture my potential future reader

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