Later on, the pages of days turned emptily

The Comet

In the dark apartment my father alone was awake, wandering silently through the rooms filled with the sing-song of sleep. Sometimes he opened the door of the flue and looked grinning into its dark abyss, where a smiling Homunculus slept for ever its luminous sleep, enclosed in a glass capsule, bathed in fluorescent light, already adjudged, erased, filed away, another record card in the immense archives of the sky.

Schulz 1921

THAT YEAR the end of the winter stood under the sign of particularly favorable astronomical aspects. The predictions in the calendar flourished in red in the snowy margins of the mornings. The brighter red of Sundays and Holy days cast its reflection on half the week and these weekdays burned coldly, with a freak, rapid flame. Human hearts beat more quickly for a moment, misled and blinded by the redness, which, in fact, announced nothing, being merely a premature alert, a colorful lie of the calendar, painted in bright cinnabar on the jacket of the week. From Twelfth Night onwards, we sat night after night over the white parade-ground of the table gleaming with candlesticks and silver, and played endless games of patience. Every hour, the night beyond the windows became lighter, sugarcoated and shiny, filled with sprouting almonds and sweetmeats. The moon, that most inventive transmogrifier, wholly engrossed in her lunar practices, accomplished her successive phases and grew ever brighter and brighter. Already by day, the moon stood in the wings, prematurely ready for her cue, brassy and lustreless. Meanwhile whole flocks of feather clouds passed like sheep across her profile on their silent white extensive wandering, barely covering her with the shimmering mother-of-pearl scales into which the firmament froze towards the evening.

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den geliebtesten Hilflos versinken, that day he had managed to eat two apples and lay his hands on a little money, enough for a bed for the night

Der Sumpf

Manchen der Freunde sah ich, und den geliebtesten
Hilflos versinken im Sumpfe, an dem ich
Taglich vorbeigeh.

Und es geschah nicht an einem
Einzigen Vormittag. Viele
Wochen nahm es oft; dies machte es schrecklicher.
Und das Gedenken an die gemeinsamen
Langen Gespräche über den Sumpf, der
So viele schon birgt.

Hilflos nun sah ich ihn zurückgelehnt
Bedeckt mit den Blutegeln
In dem schimmernden
Sanft bewegten Schlamm. Auf dem versinkenden
Antlitz das gräßliche
Wonnige Lächeln.

The Monster

Just how many constructions can be put on a man’s behaviour was shown recently by an incident at the Russian Mezhrabpom film studios. It may have been insignificant and it had no consequence, but there was something horrible about it. While The White Eagle – a film about the pre-war pogroms in south Russia, which pilloried the attitude of the police at the time – was being shot in the studio, an old man turned up and asked for a job. He forced his way into the porter’s box at the street entrance and told the porter he would like to take the liberty of drawing the company’s attention to his extraordinary resemblance to the notorious governor Muratov. (Muratov had instigated the bloodbath at the time. His was the leading role in the aforesaid film.)
The porter laughed in his face, but since he was an old man he did not eject him straight away, and that is how the long, thin fellow came to be standing, hat in hand, with a faraway look amid the hubbub of extras and studio technicians, seemingly still nursing a faint hope of earning bread and shelter for a couple of days on the strength of his resemblance to the notorious killer.

For almost an hour he stood there, constantly stepping aside to let people go by until he ended up hemmed in behind a desk, and there he was at last suddenly noticed. There was a break in the shooting and the actors headed for the canteen or stood around chatting. Kochalov, the famous Moscow actor playing Muratov, went into the porter’s box to make a phone call. As he stood by the phone he was nudged by the grinning gatekeeper and when he turned he saw the man behind the desk, whereupon peals of laughter rang out all around him. Kochalov’s make-up was based on historical photographs, and the extraordinary resemblance that the old man behind the desk had been telling them about was obvious to everybody.

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We, Mirrorlike point of the pavement

Twenty-second Entry


Congealed Waves – Everything Is Being Perfected – I Am a Microbe

The building of the Integral will be completed in one hundred and twenty days. The great historic hour when the first Integral will soar into cosmic space is drawing near. One thousand years ago your heroic ancestors subdued the entire terrestrial globe to the power of the One State. Yours will be a still more glorious feat: you will integrate the infinite equation of the universe with the aid of the fire-breathing, electric, glass Integral. You will subjugate the unknown beings on other planets, who may still be living in the primitive condition of freedom, to the beneficent yoke of reason.

Через 120 дней заканчивается постройка ИНТЕГРАЛА. Близок великий, исторический час, когда первый ИНТЕГРАЛ взовьется в мировое пространство. Тысячу лет тому назад ваши героические предки покорили власти Единого Государства весь земной шар. Вам предстоит еще более славный подвиг: стеклянным, электрическим, огнедышащим ИНТЕГРАЛОМ проинтегрировать бесконечное уравнение Вселенной. Вам предстоит благодетельному игу разума подчинить неведомые существа, обитающие на иных планетах — быть может, еще в диком состоянии свободы. Если они не поймут, что мы несем им математически безошибочное счастье, наш долг заставить их быть счастливыми. Но прежде оружия мы испытаем слово.

Imagine yourself standing on the shore: the waves rise rhythmically, then, having risen, suddenly remain there— frozen, congealed. It seemed just as eerie and unnatural when our daily walk, prescribed by the Table of Hours, suddenly halted midway, and everyone was thrown into confusion. The last time something similar happened, according to our annals, was 119 years ago, when a meteorite dropped, smoking and whistling, right into the thick of the marching rows.

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Toward an Architecture

LC Bouteilles


Aesthetic of the Engineer


Aesthetic of the Engineer, Architecture: two things firmly allied, sequential, the one in full flower, the other in painful regression.

The engineer, inspired by the law of Economy and guided by calculations, puts us in accord with universal laws. He attains harmony.

The architect, through the ordonnance of forms, realizes an order that is a pure creation of his mind; through forms, he affects our senses intensely, provoking plastic emotions; through the relationships that he creates, he stirs in us deep resonances, he gives us the measure of an order that we sense to be in accord with that of the world, he determines the diverse movements of our minds and our hearts; it is then that we experience beauty.

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МЫ. Вариант манифеста

WE: Variant of a Manifesto

We call ourselves kinoks – as opposed to ‘cinematographers’, a herd of junkmen doing rather well peddling their rags.

We see no connection between true kinchestvo and the cunning and calculation of the profiteers.

We consider the psychological Russo-German film-drama – weighed down with apparitions and childhood memories – an absurdity.

To the American adventure film with its showy dynamism and to the dramatizations of the American Pinkertons the kinoks say thanks for the rapid shot changes and the close-ups. Good … but disorderly, not based on a precise study of movement. A cut above the psychological drama, but still lacking in foundation. A cliché. A copy of a copy.

WE proclaim the old films, based on the romance, theatrical films and the like, to be leprous.

– Keep away from them!

– Keep your eyes off them!

– They’re mortally dangerous!

– Contagious!

WE affirm the future of cinema art by denying its present.

‘Cinematography’ must die so that the art of the cinema may live. WE call for its death to be hastened.

МЫ открытым лицом к осознанию машинного ритма, восторга механического труда, восприятию красоты химических процессов, поем землетрясения, слагаем кинопоэмы пламени и электростанциям, восторгаемся движениями комет и метеоров и ослепляющими звезды жестами прожекторов.

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Dada Manifesto

No more painters, no more writers, no more musicians, no more sculptors, no more religions, no more republicans, no more royalists, no more imperialists, no more anarchists, no more socialists, no more Bolsheviks, no more politicians, no more proletarians, no more democrats, no more bourgeois, no more aristocrats, no more armies, no more police, no more fatherlands, enough of all these imbecilities, no more anything, no more anything, nothing, nothing, nothing, nothing.

We hope something new will come from this, being exactly what we no longer want, determinedly less putrid, less selfish, less materialistic, less obtuse, less immensely grotesque.

Long live concubines and the con-cubists. All members of the DADA movement are presidents.


Everything that is not me is incomprehensible.

Whether sought on Pacific sands or gathered in the hinterland of my own existence, the shell that I press to my ear will ring with the same voice and I’ll think it the voice of the sea and it will be but the sound of myself.

If I suddenly find it’s no longer enough to hold every word in my hand like pretty pearly objects, every word will enable me to listen to the sea, and in the mirror of their sound will I find no image but my own.

However it may seem, language boils down to just this I and whenever I utter a word it divests itself of everything that isn’t me until it becomes an organic noise through which my life unfolds.


Liberating from the Ready-made Reality

… We propose liberating painting from its subservience to the ready-made form of reality and to make it first and foremost a creative, not a reproductive, art.

The savage happily drawing the outlines of a bull or a deer on a piece of stone, the primitive, the academician, the artists of antiquity and of the Renaissance, the Impressionists, the Cubists, and even to some degree the Futurists are all united by the same thing: the object. These artists are intrigued, delighted, amazed and gladdened by nature. They try to fathom her essence, they aspire to immortalize her …

Cubism killed the love of the everyday appearance of the object, but not the love of the object as a whole. Nature continued to be the guide of aesthetic ideas. The works of the Cubists lack a clearly defined idea of non-objective art.

Their art is characterized by efforts to complicate the task of depicting reality. Their complaint against the established prescriptions for copying nature turned into a formidable bomb that smashed the decayed metaphysics of figurative art into smithereens – an art that had lost all idea of aim and technique …

In its force and its clarity of perception, Futurism provided art with a unique expression – the fusion of two worlds, the subjective and the objective. Maybe this event is destined never to be repeated.

But the ideological gnosticism of Futurism had no effect on the damned consciousness of the majority who, to this day, continue to reiterate that Futurism marks a radical break in the course of world art, a crisis of art …

Our time is one of metal, its soul is initiative and technology: the Futurists brought technology to its full potential …

Until the Futurists came along, artists used to express movement in the following conventional manner: a maximum expression of movement resulted from placing forms on the surface of the canvas parallel to the perimeter of the canvas, and a maximum static expression resulted from the placing of the forms parallel to the surface of the canvas.

The spectator did not sense movement in the picture. All he saw was a rendering of movement …

For the Suprematists, the painting has ceased, once and for all, to be a function of the frame.

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