Christmas Reading

In the run-up to Christmas, humans all over the world seek a variety of things – none more so than to waste their precious time. In days of old this could be done by taking a long walk, writing a revolutionary pamphlet or invading a small country. In the noble present we merely turn our computers on and watch short videos of kittens in clogs dancing rumbas to Russian military bands.

Alternatively, there is always ‘reading’. And what better reading material could one ask for at this time of year than a short review of contemporary ‘bruise artist’ Maria Von Uppelhart? Over to you, D H Laven:

It’s all very well arguing that artists ought to let the art speak for themselves, but when there doesn’t seem to be any art of which to speak, one does need to cast one’s net a little further. What happened next, however, did little to assuage the worst fears of the assembled company. Von Uppelhärt sprang from her throne, dropped her smart brown trousers and invited the nearest bystander to land a punch above her knee..

Read more here.

Seasonal Wish List

Dear non-specified seasonal gift bestower,

I would be most grateful if the following books could be made available to me sometime over the next few weeks, preferably accompanied by a few bottles of whisky and a copious supply of delicately spiced pastries.

A New History of Short-Lived Magazines and Journals by Fran Hoffgeiger [the long-awaited new edition of Hoffgeiger’s seminal 1987 work, A History of Short-Lived Magazines and Journals, the first comprehensive guide to literary projects that lasted less than a year. Includes a fascinating chapter on the Swedish magazines Undergräva and Maskarade Åskådare, edited by the chaotic poet Rasmus Ranasson].

Article and Correspondence by Lucia Raus [see below]

Butterfly Winter by Lars Tillförlitlig [Well, how can one resist a novel whose first line runs as follows: ‘My father celebrated his eightieth birthday by biting off the finger off his dead wife‘?]

What’s the story, mourning jewellery? by Keira Lashnik [a bit of an obscure interest here, but I can’t get enough of creepy Victorian hair jewellery at the moment].

Lastly, anything by Piers Jorgenstäd, Clemency Whittaker and Sergei Robadov.