January 8, 2013
June 22, 2012
February 13, 2012
this review first published here: http://seul-le-cinema.blogspot.com/2009/05/alexander-kluge-early-shorts.html
February 10, 2012
The introduction to this special issue
Ruins: Fabricating Histories of Time
is now available to read for free online:
February 4, 2012
January 18, 2012
January 11, 2012
April 22, 2011
Here speaks Electra. In the Heart of Darkness. Under the Sun of Torture. To the Metropolises of the World. In the Names of the Victims. I expel all the semen which I have received. I transform the milk of my breasts into deadly poison. I suffocate the world which I gave birth to, between my thighs. I bury it in my crotch. Down with the joy of oppression. Long live hate, loathing, rebellion, death. When she walks through your bedroom with butchers knives, you’ll know the truth.
May 23, 2010
this article first appeared here
December 27, 2009
December 13, 2009
October 10, 2009
October 3, 2009
Much later, when the flood of destruction, pollution, and falsification had conquered the whole surface of the planet, as well as pouring down nearly to its very depths, I could return to the ruins that remain of Paris, since by then nothing better was left elsewhere. No exile is possible in a unified world.
August 29, 2009
Since perhaps not everything is false, may nothing cure us, my love, of the almost ecstatic pleasure of lying.
Ultimate subtlety! Supreme perversion! The absurd lie has all the charm of the perverse with the even greater, ultimate charm of being innocent. The deliberately innocent perversion – who can go beyond this supreme subtlety? The perversion that doesn’t even aspire to give us pleasure and that lacks the fury to cause us pain, falling to the ground between pleasure and pain, useless and absurd like a shoddy toy with which an adult tries to amuse himself!
Don’t you know, Exquisite One, the pleasure of buying things you don’t need? Don’t you know the delight of roads which, when we’re distracted, we take by mistake? What human act has a colour as lovely as a spurious one …. which lies to its own nature and contradicts its own intention?
How sublime to waste a life that could have been useful, never to execute a work of art that was certain to be beautiful, to abandon midway a sure road to victory!
Ah, my love, the glory of works which have been lost for ever, of treatises which today are mere titles, of libraries which burned down, of statures which were demolished!
How blessed with Absurdity are the artists who set fire to a beautiful work! Or the artists who could have made a beautiful work but deliberately made it ordinary! Or the great poets of Silence who, knowing they were capable of writing an absolutely perfect work, preferred to crown it with the decision never to write it. (For an imperfect work, it makes no difference.)
How much more beautiful the Mona Lisa would be if we couldn’t see it! And if someone were to rob it just to burn it, what an artist he would be, even greater than the one who painted it!
Why is art beautiful? Because it’s useless. Why is life ugly? Because it’s all aims, objectives, intentions. All of its roads are for going from one point to another. If only we could have a road connecting a place no one ever leaves from to a place where no one goes! If only someone would devote his life to building a road from the middle of one field to the middle of another – a road that would be useful if extended at each end, but that would sublimely remain as only the middle stretch of a road!
The beauty of ruins? That they’re no longer good for anything.
The sweetness of the past? Our memory of it, since to remember it is to make it present, and it isn’t present nor can ever be – absurdity my love, absurdity.
And I who am saying all this – why am I writing this book? Because I realize it’s imperfect. Dreamed it would be perfection; written, it becomes imperfect; that’s why I’m writing it. And above all else, because I advocate uselessness, absurdity, I write this book to lie to myself, to be unfaithful to my own theory.
And the supreme glory of all this, my love, is to think that perhaps none of it is true and that I don’t even believe it’s true.
And when lying begins to bring us pleasure, let’s give it the lie by telling the truth. And when lying causes us anxiety, let’s stop so that the suffering can’t become even perversely pleasurable.
the book of disquiet