robertogreco + juliocortázar   27

Spaces of encounter: the performative art of reading | Thinkpiece | Architectural Review
"When the ‘counter novel’ Hopscotch by Julio Cortázar was published in 1963 it was celebrated as one of the most innovative experiments in 20th-century literature. The book was written to allow and encourage many different and complementary readings. As the author’s note at the beginning of the novel suggests, it can be read either progressively in the first 56 chapters or by ‘hopscotching’ through the entire set of 155 chapters according to a ‘Table of Instructions’. Cortázar also allows the reader the option of choosing their own unique path through the book. It’s no coincidence that the narrative – from the title of the book to the several overlapping stories that are contained in it – is based on a game often played in small groups in public spaces and playgrounds, in which the player has to hop or jump to retrieve a small object tossed into numbered patterns drawn on the ground. The book’s main structure has strong allusions to the notions of ‘space’ and the way we navigate through it, with its three main sections entitled ‘From the Other Side’, ‘From this Side’, and ‘From Diverse Sides’.

[image: "Since 2010, the ‘book bloc’ has been a visible feature of protests"]

Similarly, but from a different perspective, one of the first things the reader notes when flipping through Fantasies of the Library edited by Anne-Sophie Springer and Etienne Turpin and published in 2016 by MIT Press, is that the book itself can be understood as a kind of public space. In effect, it presents a brilliant dérive through books, book collections and the physical spaces of libraries from a curatorial perspective, going from private collections and the way their shelves are organised, to more ad hoc and temporary infrastructures, such as the People’s Library at Occupy Wall Street in New York, or the Biblioburro, a travelling library in Colombia that distributes books from the backs of two donkeys, Alfa and Beto. Various configurations and layouts have been designed in response to these narratives. They include essays, photos and interviews, setting up different kinds of encounters between authors, editors, readers, photographers and illustrators. Once you have the book in your hands, you gradually start to apprehend that the four conversations are printed only on left-hand pages, interspersed with other essays on right-hand ones. So it is only when you start reading voraciously and are interrupted by the ‘non-sense’ of these jumps, when the understanding of the dynamics imposed by the layout manifests itself, that you become aware you are already ‘hopscotching’ from page to page. The chapter ‘Reading Rooms Reading Machines’ is not only a visual essay about the power of books to create spaces around them and gather a community, it is also a curated, annotated and provocative history of these spaces as a conceptual continuation between the book and the city, ‘two environments in conjunction’, as Springer writes.

In some ways, it resembles the encounters you have in the streets of your neighbourhood. Some people you only glance at, others you smile at, there are a few with whom you talk and if you’re lucky, you might meet a friend. Within the texts, you can hop back and forth, approving, underlining, or absorbing in more detail. From individual object to the container known as the library, the idea of the book as a territory is explored in depth. Different kinds and sizes of spaces and the interactions that happen in and between them emerge. Springer describes the library as ‘a hybrid site for performing the book’ – a place where the book is not a static object but a space in which the reader is an active agent, coming and going from the outside; outside the pages and outside the library. It recalls Ray Bradbury’s assertion that: ‘Books are in themselves already more than mere containers of information; they are also modes of connectivity and interrelation, making the library a meta-book containing illimitable intertextual elements.’

[image: "Improvised book blocs on the street" from source: Interference Archive]

In moving from the ‘hopscotching’ suggested by Cortázar to the idea of the ‘library as map’ as discussed by Springer and Turpin, it is clear that the inextricable relationship between books and space forms the basis of our understanding of books as spaces of encounter, and the importance of heterogeneous books – whether fiction, poetry or critical theory – as spaces of encounter for architectural discourse. In that sense, books can be perceived as new kinds of spaces, where empathy, alterity and otherness are stronger than ideologies. Catalysing dissent and open dialogue, they can be one of the most effective tools of resistance in times of censorship, fake news and post-truth. Social anthropologist Athena Athanasiou explains how books have been used in public space as part of political struggles. ‘People have taken to the streets to fight for critical thinking and public education, turning books into banners and shields against educational cuts and neoliberal regimes of university governance’, she writes. This activism emphasises the strong symbolic power of the relationship between books and architectural spaces, ‘where the books were not only at the barricades, they were the barricades’. Such agency can transgress almost any kind of limit or boundary, and can happen in any sort of space – from your mobile device to the library or the street. But it is in the public sphere where the book’s agency can have the ‘power to affect’, becoming ‘a hybrid site for performing the book’ beyond the confines of the library.

Books can be ‘performed’ in many ways, especially when critical writing and the act of reading create spaces of encounter in the city. In June 2013, after plans were unveiled to develop Istanbul’s Gezi Park, artist Erdem Gunduz initiated his Standing Man protest while he stood motionless in Taksim Square for eight hours. This thoughtful form of resistance inspired a group of ‘silent readers’ who successfully transformed a space of fighting and friction into a meaningful space of encounter by simply standing still and reading books. It became known as the Tak sim Square Book Club, paradoxically one of the most dynamic demonstrations in recent years. The strength and energy contained in the bodies of each reader, but also in every book and the endless stories and narratives between covers, transformed Taksim Square into a highly politicised space. Instead of being compromised by conflict between government and citizens, it became a space of encounter that gave agency to each silent reader and to the wider collectivity they brought into being.

[image: "Readers in Istanbul’s Taksim Square transform the space through peaceful activism"]

The moment when writing, often carried out in solitude, is published, circulated and made accessible to everyone is the moment of generating public space, argues the French philosopher and art historian Georges Didi-Huberman. This was demonstrated in the ‘Parasitic Reading Room’, a nomadic, spontaneous and parasitic set of reading spaces staged during the opening days of the 4th Istanbul Design Biennial. Initially consisting of a series of out-loud readings of texts at selected venues, it then expanded to become an urban dérive across the streets of the city in the company of a mobile radio broadcasting the live readings. In that moment, the ‘walking reading room’ became a space of exchange, knowledge and collaboration. Different points of view coexisted, enriching each other, forming knowledge assemblages. It reminds us that reading together, whether silently or aloud, forces us to interact, to respect the times and rhythms of others, to learn new words and their sounds and to think new thoughts. In doing so, we rediscover new territories of empathy that become visible when visiting these spaces of encounter, where we learn that we can host otherness as part of the self. Where comradeship is a means instead of an end. Books create the spaces in which to play hopscotch together again."
ethelbaraonapohl  césarreyesnájera  books  reading  howweread  howwewrite  rayuela  2019  neilgaiman  fiction  space  performance  etienneturpin  derive  collections  libraries  raybradbury  connectivity  interrelation  hypertext  athenaathanasiou  architecture  protest  biblioburro  nomads  nomadism  nomadic  ows  occupywallstreet  conversation  neighborhoods  urban  urbanism  cities  istanbul  geziprk  erdemgunduz  taksimsquare  georgesdidi-huberman  comradeship  solidarity  empathy  writing  visibility  hopscotch  juliocortázar  anna-sophiespringer  dérive 
january 2019 by robertogreco
It's Nice That | Graphic Design: Peter Mendelsund's brilliant covers for Julio Cortázar novel
"Some things take a few tries to get right, be it baking, swimming, snogging, or a book jacket design for a much-loved title. In designer Peter Mendelsund’s case, it was the latter he struggled with, and when asked to come up with a book cover for Julio Cortázar’s Hopscotch, he and a whole host of other designers set to work trying to whittle it down into a a book-sized visual. The New York Times made a list of the entries, including some of Mendelsund’s, which illustrated the sheer time and effort that goes into the best book covers. I’m not talking no service station fodder, the best books deserve time and money to make their covers sing, and Peter Mendelsund has achieved just that."
juliocortázar  petermendelsund  via:tealtan  design  bookdesign  graphicdesign  graphics  rayuela 
august 2017 by robertogreco
The Subtle Radicalism of Julio Cortázar's Berkeley Lectures, Collected in 'Literature Class' - The Atlantic
[See also:
"Julio Cortázar's Berkeley Lectures Demonstrate the Writer as Dream Professor" (Tobias Carroll, 2017)

"Cortázar at Berkeley" (Jessica Sequeira, 2014) ]

"“What good is a writer if he can’t destroy literature?” The question comes from Julio Cortázar’s landmark 1963 novel Hopscotch, the dense, elusive, streetwise masterpiece that doubles as a High Modernist choose-your-own-adventure game. Famously, it includes an introductory “table of instructions”: “This book consists of many books,” Cortázar writes in it, “but two books above all.” The first version is read traditionally, from chapter one straight through; the second version begins at chapter seventy-three, and snakes through a non-linear sequence. Both reading modes follow the world-weary antihero Horacio Oliveira, Cortázar’s proxy protagonist, who is disenchanted with the tepid certainties of bourgeois life, and whose metaphysical explorations form the scaffolding of a billowing, richly comic existential caper. Of his magnum opus, Cortázar said, laconically, “I’ve remained on the side of the questions.” But it was the novel’s formal daring—its branching paths—that hinted at what was to be the Argentine author’s most persistent and most personal inquiry: Why should there be only one reality?

That suspicion of grand narratives—both in literature and in life—informs much of Literature Class, a newly published collection of eight lectures the writer delivered at the University of California, Berkeley in 1980. The consequent lectures—originally delivered in Spanish and translated adeptly by Katherine Silver—are erudite, intimate, charmingly fragmented, and anecdotal, covering a range of topics, from “Eroticism and Literature” to “The Realistic Short Story.” The unifying through line is Cortázar’s abiding insistence on the elasticity of literary art, the better to capture what he saw as a fleeting, contentious, and ever-fluid reality. At one point, Cortázar tells his students, “I had lived with a complete feeling of familiarity with the fantastic because it seemed as acceptable to me, as possible and as real, as the fact of eating soup at eight o’clock in the evening.” The fantastic, then, was a means of leavening the flatness of the widely accepted, or the merely prosaic. The sentiment becomes something of a refrain. For Cortázar, like his creation Horacio, the joyless—and, in cases, politically expedient—narrowing of lived possibility was forever conspiring with a larger falseness, one he called “the prefabricated, pre-established world.”

While Cortázar doesn’t explicitly explain what he meant by this, his work suggests a deep distrust of the very everydayness of life, a suspicion that it constitutes a paralysis masquerading as a soothing routine. “It occurred to me like a sort of mental belch,” Horacio says in one of Hopscotch’s lengthy internal monologues, “that this whole A B C of my life was a painful bit of stupidity, because it was based solely on…the choice of what could be called nonconduct rather than conduct.” Elsewhere, in the short story The Instruction Manual, Cortázar writes with similar misgiving, “How it hurts to refuse a spoon, to say no to a door, to deny everything that habit has licked to a suitable smoothness.” The lectures take up arms against that smoothness with a disarming candor: “Why do people accept that things are the way they are when they could be some other way?” he asks his students in a lecture called “The Ludic in Literature.” It seems a simple, even banal, question, yet it animated his work to an extraordinary degree.

By the time of his Berkeley sojourn, Cortázar was no stranger to undermining these kinds of assumptions. Indeed, for the offshoot of literary modernism referred to as the Latin American Boom—in which Cortázar played a definitive role in its 1960s heyday—a radical reevaluation of reality came with the territory. The Boom, which included the fertile works of Gabriel García Márquez, Carlos Fuentes, and José Lezama Lima, among others, helped to shatter the barriers between the mundane and the fantastic. Cortázar himself brought a kind of cosmopolitan cubism to the novel in which time, place, language, even the literal text itself, became sites of contention, participation, and play. The read-as-you-like instructions of Hopscotch, then (“The reader may ignore what follows with a clean conscience”) should not be taken as mere gamesmanship or avant-garde posturing; rather, they actively pushed up against a literary realism that no longer suited the fragmented textures of contemporary Latin American life.

Widespread political turbulence was an inescapable feature of that experience, even as a concomitant concern with what it meant to be a politically engaged Latin American artist took shape beside it. A new wave of fiercely complex, narratively adventurous novels like Augusto Roa Bastos’s I, the Supreme, a barely concealed censure of the Paraguayan dictator Alfredo Stroessner, and Mario Vargas Llosa’s The Time of the Hero, copies of which the Peruvian military burned, showcased the potency of literature as a means of speaking to dictatorial power. “I think it is now clear that the inevitable dialect that always exists between reality and literature has evolved deeply in many of our countries through the force of circumstance,” Cortázar tells his students in “A Writer’s Paths,” the most nakedly autobiographical of the Berkeley lectures. Literature Class is punctuated by such candid remarks, and suggests that the sparkle and audacity of Cortázar’s work, to say nothing of the Boom as a whole, are in many ways inextricable from that tumultuous mid-century political moment. Cortázar’s mid-career epiphany that literature should be “born out of the process of the populace, the peoples that the author belongs to” arguably came out of this experience; it represented a radical awakening to a frankly political, though never crudely didactic, art. “I had to switch my emphasis to the condition of being Latin American,” Cortázar says in the same lecture, “and take on everything that came with that responsibility and that duty.”

No small part of that duty was Cortázar’s project of reality-testing. Just as in his novels and short stories, that word—“reality”—appears dozens of times throughout Literature Class. Over the course of the lectures, the word accretes a kind of moral gravity until one begins to understand it as Cortázar himself appeared to: a battlefield over which opposing forces grappled for control. This was no mere abstraction. During the brutal regimes of Perón, Batista, Somoza, and others, officially sanctioned reality lost any claim to the real; rather, it served as a kind of malignant fiction in which the State was the unquestioned narrator. (The Trump administration’s insistence on “alternative facts” is only the latest iteration of this tactic.) Cortázar’s experience of this encroachment would be sporadic—he had lived in Paris since 1951—but profound. The so-called “Dirty War” saw thousands of his countrymen killed or “disappeared” in the 1970s as anti-communist death squads ruthlessly eliminated supposed dissidents. “It is in this realm,” Cortázar says to his students in the lecture “Latin American Literature Today,” “so stained with blood, torture, prisons, and depraved demagoguery, where our literature is fighting its battles.”

Cortázar’s quest for reality, then, became indistinguishable from his critique of it. In a 1976 edition of the international literary quarterly Books Abroad, he wrote, “Nothing seems more revolutionary to me than enriching the notion of reality by all means possible.” No matter what form that enrichment took in his fiction (the branching paths of Hopscotch, the visionary naïveté of Cronopios and Famas, the genre instability of Blow-Up: And Other Stories), its objective, as he suggests in “The Realistic Short Story,” was to produce “reality as it is, without betraying it, without deforming it, allowing the reader to see beneath the causes, into the deeper workings, the reasons that lead men to be as they are or as they are not.” Always something of a moving target in his work, reality, finally, wasn’t meant to be found, much less achieved. It was an endless pursuit, morally malleable, generous, radically free. “When you reach the limits of expression,” he says in another lecture, “just beyond begins a territory where everything is possible and everything is uncertain.” In Cortázar’s terms, we’ve reached Eden: the ultimate state of grace.

The classroom, of course, was another story entirely. Cortázar might have seen it as a place where official narratives, that “pre-established world,” could be nurtured and legitimized for students—an irony he was doubtless abundantly aware of as he lectured. Indeed, almost immediately one can feel him chafing beneath the authority conferred by the lectern. “I want you to know that I’m cobbling together these classes very shortly before you get here,” he says on his first day. “I’m not systematic, I’m not a critic or a theorist.” Later, in the lecture “Writing Hopscotch,” he reveals the ultimate source of his apprehension: “How can [the writer] denounce something with the tools that are used by the enemy, that is … a language already used by the masters and their disciples?” Whatever the ostensible topic of a given lecture, these evasions continue to surface like an anxious tic. Taken together, they comprise the enormously enjoyable subtext of Literature Class: the ambivalence of a great writer who seeks to interrogate the efficacy of a weapon he has no choice but to use.

… [more]
juliocortázar  radicalism  authority  2017  ucberkeley  reality  1960s  literacy  theboom  elboom  life  meaning  everyday  literature  1963  rayuela  linearity  nonlinear  1980  katherinesilver  elasticity  magicrealism  fantasy  gabrielgarcíamárquez  carlosfuentes  josélezamalima  cubism  language  latinamerica  mariovargasllosa  alfredostoessner  augustoroabastos  argentina  alternativefacts  grace  non-linear  alinear 
may 2017 by robertogreco
Valparaiso • Sergio Larrain • Magnum Photos
"The experimental Chilean photographer's iconic depictions of his homeland in the 1960s offer intimate insights into the artist’s inner life"

[See also: "Sergio Larrain obituary: Experimental Chilean photographer whose short career resulted in a string of inspirational images"

"Although he was photographically active for scarcely more than a decade and was the author of just four books (all of them now collectors' items), the stature and reputation of the Chilean photographer Sergio Larrain, who has died aged 80, continued to grow after he withdrew from the vibrant European world of street photography to live in a meditational retreat.

Born into a professional family in Santiago (his father was an architect), he began by studying music. At the age of 18, he went to the US and studied forestry at the University of California, Berkeley, before transferring to Ann Arbor, Michigan, in 1954. He also travelled through Europe and the Middle East, taking a camera. When he returned home, he began freelancing for the Brazilian magazine O Cruzeiro with a heart-searing series on street children living on the banks of the Rio Mapuche. The Museum of Modern Art in New York acquired two images for its collection in 1956.

In 1958 Larrain obtained a grant from the British Council to undertake an eight-month reportage project on British cities. The book that resulted focused on London, with the swinging 60s just around the corner, capturing the ebb and flow of crowds on the streets and transport system. The work so impressed Henri Cartier-Bresson that he invited Larrain to join the Magnum agency that he had co-founded in 1948, with "Chim" Seymour, George Rodger and Robert Capa.

Larrain joined as an associate in 1959 and was set a mission impossible: to photograph the mafia boss Giuseppe Russo, wanted for multiple murder by Interpol. Larrain took the task seriously and spent months researching and photographing from Rome to Sicily, where he finally located Russo in Caltanissetta. He then spent a fortnight winning the trust of Russo's bodyguards before passing off his 35mm Leica as an artistic tourist's toy. The pictures of Russo were published in Life in the US and Paris Match in France, before being syndicated globally. In 1961 Larrain became a full member of the world's most famous photographic agency.

In 1963 he published El Rectángulo en la Mano (Rectangle in Hand). In 1966 Una Casa en la Arena (A House in the Sand) appeared, about Pablo Neruda's house on Isla Negra, with a text by the poet. Neruda also supplied the text for perhaps Larrain's most famous book, Valparaiso (1991), containing a striking image of two little girls running down a flight of stone steps, their white frocks and rectangular bobbed haircuts a microcosm of the stark geometry of black shadows and noonday sun.

Larrain recalled taking it "in a state of peace and utter serenity, just pursuing what at the time interested me most. Then, as if from nowhere, first one little girl appeared, shortly joined by another. It was more than perfect, it was a magical image." Agnes Sire, for 20 years desk editor of Magnum (Paris), described it as taken in "not so much a decisive moment as in the state of spirit that he called a state of grace".

Larrain was endlessly experimental. One afternoon in the 1950s, he was taking photographs outside Notre Dame in Paris and captured scenes between a couple which he only noticed when he developed the film. This provided the inspiration for Julio Cortázar's extraordinary 1959 story The Devil's Drool, which in turn was the basis for Michelangelo Antonioni's 1966 film Blow-Up.

In 1968 Editions Rencontre published Chile, in which all but two of the pictures are Larrain's. It is the only book to use his work as illustration, rather than art. The rest of the books issued under his name, published throughout the 1990s primarily as exhibition catalogues, are reprises or re-edits of earlier ones. In 1999 the Valencia Institute of Modern Art held a Larrain retrospective which led to a huge resurgence of interest. This was something Larrain loathed, for by then he had chosen to find his state of grace through meditation.

In 1972 he had met the Bolivian mystic Oscar Ichazo and abandoned photography to study oriental religions, calligraphy and painting, and to practise and teach yoga. First at Ovalle, then moving still further and higher into the mountains to Tulahuén, Larrain led an increasingly isolated life – except in one sense. He became a copious letter-writer. John Morris, the former Magnum bureau chief, described his letters as "all ruminations on the sad state of the world and appeals to me to take action to improve it"."]
chile  photography  valparaíso  1950s  sergiolarraín  magnum  giusepperusso  islanegra  pabloneruda  juliocortázar  henricartier-bresson  robertcapa  georgerodger  chimseymour 
january 2017 by robertogreco
The Electronic Labyrinth Home Page
"The Electronic Labyrinth is a study of the implications of hypertext for creative writers looking to move beyond traditional notions of linearity.

Our project evaluates hypertext and its potential for use by literary artists in three ways:

1. By placing the development of hypertext in the context of the literary tradition of non-linear approaches to narrative. This context provides a means of re-evaluating the concept of the book in the age of electronic text. Specific points of investigation include Cortázar's Hopscotch, Nabokov's Pale Fire, Pavic's Dictionary of the Khazars, and Sterne's Tristram Shandy.

2. By investigating literary works created specifically for computerized hypertext. These include Joyce's Afternoon, A Story, McDaid's Uncle Buddy's Phantom Funhouse, and Wilmott's Everglade.

3. By evaluating the hardware platforms and software environments available to writers. Criteria include ease of use, availability, methods of distribution and publication, and the tools available to the writer and reader. Our emphasis is placed on the assumptions each environment makes of the writing and reading processes, the metaphors reinforced by the environment, and the freedom allowed the writer to explore new forms. We have focused on IBM-compatible and Apple hardware platforms, and reviewed such software as Eastgate System's Storyspace, Claris' HyperCard, IBM's Linkway, and Ntergaid's Hyperwriter."
via:litherland  1993  christopherkeep  timmclaughlin  robinparmar  storyspace  linkway  hyperwriter  hypercard  jamesjoyce  hypertext  bookfuturism  ebooks  books  publishing  nonlinear  narrative  rayuela  juliocortázar  vladimirnabokov  electroniclabyrinth  non-linear  alinear  linearity 
december 2013 by robertogreco
The American Crawl : Rhizomatic Listening: On Shuffling Audiobooks
"And this is what I’ve been thinking about: the shift in narrative as a result of audio shuffle…

Cortazar’s Hopscotch supposedly works in random-ish order.

I think a more controlled chaos could also work. I think of the three parts of Skippy Dies and, considering Paul Murray tells you exactly what happens by the end of the book in the title, wonder how my experience would be altered if I shuffled the three parts of the books. Ditto the five parts (and three bound volumes) of Bolano’s 2666.

I think of Deleuze and Guittari’s notion of the rhizome. A model for looking at research and culture, the notion of the rhizome differs significantly from traditional tree-like hierarchies. Seeing multiple points of entry and exploration, they write that “any point of a rhizome can be connected to anything other, and must be.” The world is shuffled. We curate rhizomatic experience everytime we create a playlist – a digital piñata of randomly falling sonic riches."
harukimurakami  skippydies  theunfortunates  bsjohnson  paulmurray  forthewin  corydoctorow  playlists  ipod  nicholasjaar  gabrielgarcíamárquez  rhizome  2666  robertobolaño  rayuela  hopscotch  randomization  machinemixing  remixing  listening  deleuze&guattari;  shuffling  audiobooks  juliocortázar  shuffle  2012  anterogarcia  remixculture  from delicious
december 2012 by robertogreco
CVC. Los libros de Cortázar. Formatos curiosos.
"Entre los libros de Cortázar aparece un buen número de obras que presentan alguna curiosidad formal. De su amigo Octavio Paz se encuentran en la biblioteca tres libros de formatos curiosos."
design  publishing  format  octaviopaz  books  juliocortázar  from delicious
december 2012 by robertogreco
Tibio sol « Eterna Cadencia
"Con las imágenes es más difícil: está lo que se ve y está el alma de lo que se ve. Las fotos tienen clima, tienen alrededor, tienen momento. Ese momento no se ve en la foto, sino que se siente en ella. Las partes, entonces, son menos que el todo. Estas fotos de Yako muestran el 83. Están Alfonsín y Bioy, y Borges, y Cortázar, y los carteles, y las siluetas de los desaparecidos, y el amor en los parques, pero todo eso es lo menos importante. Es tan solo lo que se ve. Lo importante, tal vez, es que en estas fotos se siente el 83: lo que iba a ser y no alcanzó, los sueños apareciendo tibiamente otra vez, la nerviosa expectativa del nacimiento, la tristeza antigua y el cosquilleo de las ilusiones. En estas fotos no hay cínicos ni muertos: hay desesperados e ilusos, enojados o torpes, pero en todos los casos hay también un tibio sol de futuro que parece llegar. Que pareció llegar. Que aún no llega. No sé cómo hizo Yako para meter todo eso en estas fotos, pero les juro que está ahí."
daniyako  photography  argentina  1983  borges  juliocortázar  alfonsín  books 
august 2010 by robertogreco
YouTube - "Lost In Paris with Cortazar" by Eduardo Montes-Bradley
"This is a clip from the feature doc "Cortázar..." by Eduardo Montes-Bradley. It portrays Carole Dunlop and Belgian [interesting] author Julio Cortázar playing hide and seek in Paris sometime in the late 1970's - early 1980's. They take turns with the camera but it's mostly Cortazar trying to find Carole in Paris. The games is familiar Hopscotch-like or reminiscent. It also comes to mind an interview in with Cortazar describe his impression on graffiti and the tear up posters in the street. Dunlop, of course is constantly searching for the elusive image of the Belgian author with a camera at hand."

[via: ]
juliocortázar  paris  caroldunlop  film  play  hopscotch  larayuela  eduardomontes-bradley 
august 2010 by robertogreco
Julio Cortázar, el jazzman : : Diario El Litoral - Santa Fe - Argentina : :
"En “El argentino que se hizo querer de todos”, García Márquez refiere un viaje en tren de París a Praga junto con Carlos Fuentes y Cortázar, donde al preguntársele (a Cortázar) sobre la introducción del piano en la orquesta de jazz desarrolló por horas “una lección histórica y estética de increíble versación, rematada con una apología de Thelenious Monk”.
juliocortázar  music  jazz 
august 2010 by robertogreco
Un cuento de Cortázar, en una publicidad
"nueva campaña televisiva de Renault...inspirada en un cuento del escritor argentino Julio Cortázar: La autopista del sur.

Es la historia de un embotellamiento en una autopista, que se prolonga indefinidamente, dejando atrapados a los tripulantes de los vehículos en una interminable procesión que avanza a paso de hombre.

Ese asfixiante escenario (una metáfora sobre la postergación, al mejor estilo kafkiano) da lugar a distintas situaciones (búsqueda de provisiones, disputas de poder, encuentros furtivos entre amantes) que obligan a los personajes a interactuar entre sí. La gracia: en la publicidad, como en el cuento, los personajes se identifican entre sí por las marcas de sus autos. El protagonista: en el comercial, Mégane 2; en el cuento, el conductor de un Peugeot 404.

"Cuando escribió La autopista del sur, tal vez sin saberlo, Cortázar estaba formulando una idea clave para la publicidad de autos: uno lleva el nombre del auto que maneja."
advertising  juliocortázar  cars 
august 2010 by robertogreco
Un cuarto de siglo sin Julio Cortázar | Cosas de Autos Blog
"Hoy no podía dejar de contarles que fue Julio Cortázar uno de los primeros bloggers en tiempos en los que la web no estaba en los planes de nadie. Allá por mayo de 1982, partió junto a su segunda esposa, la también escritora Carol Dunlop, con quien emprendió un viaje rutero de 33 días de París a Marsella. Se subieron a su combi Volkswagen, apodada Fafner, y no salieron de la atopista. El relato de ese viaje lo pueden leer en el libro “Los Autonautas de la Cosmopista”, una bitácora off line de una idea alocada, narrada por la Osita y el Lobo."
juliocortázar  roadtrips  books  writing  blogging  cars 
august 2010 by robertogreco
EPC / Paul Blackburn - Translation - Julio Cortázar - "The Instruction Manual" [The preamble is just as good, if not better, but I've bookmarked that previously, so you'll have to click through to read it in full.]
"Preamble to the Instructions on How to Wind a Watch: [...] They aren't giving you a watch, you are the gift, they're giving you yourself for the watch's birthday.

Instructions on How to Wind a Watch: Death stands there in the background, but don't be afraid. Hold the watch down with one hand, take the stem in two fingers, and rotate it smoothly. Now another installment of time opens, trees spread their leaves, boats run races, like a fan time continues filling with itself, and from that burgeon the air, the breezes of earth, the shadow of a woman, the sweet smell of bread.

What did you expect, what more do you want? Quickly. strap it to your wrist, let it tick away in freedom, imitate it greedily. Fear will rust all the rubies, everything that could happen to it and was forgotten is about to corrode the watch's veins, cankering the cold blood and its tiny rubies. And death is there in the background, we must run to arrive beforehand and understand it's already unimportant."
juliocortázar  watches  clocks  time  life  death  ownership  freedom 
august 2010 by robertogreco
Julio Cortázar: Instrucciones para dar cuerda al reloj
"...cuando te regalan un reloj te regalan un pequeño infierno florido, una cadena de rosas, un calabozo de aire. No te dan solamente el reloj, que los cumplas muy felices y esperamos que te dure porque es de buena marca, suizo con áncora de rubíes; no te regalan solamente ese menudo picapedrero que te atarás a la muñeca y pasearás contigo. Te regalan -no lo saben, lo terrible es que no lo saben-, te regalan un nuevo pedazo frágil y precario de ti mismo, algo que es tuyo pero no es tu cuerpo, que hay que atar a tu cuerpo con su correa como un bracito desesperado colgándose de tu muñeca. Te regalan la necesidad de darle cuerda todos los días, la obligación de darle cuerda para que siga siendo un reloj; te regalan la obsesión de atender a la hora exacta en las vitrinas de las joyerías, en el anuncio por la radio... Te regalan el miedo de perderlo, de que te lo roben... No te regalan un reloj, tú eres el regalado, a ti te ofrecen para el cumpleaños del reloj."
time  clocks  ownership  freedom  gifts  juliocortázar  possessions  fear  slavery  obsession 
august 2010 by robertogreco
Papeles inesperados: el último legado de Julio Cortázar -
"Hay que distinguir al coleccionista y al lector usual que, como diría Borges, es aquel que no fatiga bibliotecas. El lector que ha fatigado muchas bibliotecas, conoce como máximo la mitad de lo publicado. Y para el lector que conoce a Cortázar por los libros en librerías, prácticamente todo será una sorpresa inesperada. Cortázar como escritor aún hoy es un misterio. Cuando uno lee "Bestiario" o "Las armas secretas" tiene la impresión de que es esa clase de autor que escribe en la misma mesa que uno está sentado. No son demasiados, en la historia de la literatura contemporánea, los escritores como Cortázar."
argentina  juliocortázar  books  papelesinesperados  writing  2009 
august 2010 by robertogreco
El baúl de Israel Centeno: Las Manos que crecen
"Miró hacia abajo y vio que los dedos de sus manos arrastraban por el suelo.

Los dedos de sus manos arrastraban por el suelo. Diez sensaciones incidían en el cerebro de Plack con la colérica enunciación de las novedades repentinas. Él no lo quería creer pero era cierto. Sus manos parecían orejas de elefante africano. Gigantescas pantallas de carne arrastrando por el suelo.

A pesar del horror le dio una risa histérica. Sentía cosquillas en el dorso de los dedos; cada juntura de las baldosas le pasaba como un papel de esmeril por la piel. Quiso levantar una mano pero no pudo con ella."
juliocortázar  hands  literature  stories  shortstories  classideas 
august 2010 by robertogreco
Cortázar y Las manos que crecen - Todo lo que usted quiso saber sobre la literatura y nunca se atrevió a preguntar
"“Sus propias manos eran de mentira cuando las tendía” la frase la tomo prestada del Sr. Tascoigne que como mimo gesticula espléndidamente con las palabras desde su blog sin casi hacer nada de ruido.

(No puedo evitar también el chiste aquel de Jaime Rubio Hancock, a la muerte de Marcel Marceau: “Por supuesto, perdono a los siete que intentaron asesinarme. Mimo y francés: imagino que todo el mundo me odiaría por una cosa y/o por la otra”).
La totalidad del hilarante texto se puede encontrar en Libro de Notas.

Y para finalizar dos fragmentos de un cuento de Cortázar, que ¿cómo no? lleva el título “Las manos que crecen”. A eso iba."
hands  juliocortázar  michelgondry  film  literature 
august 2010 by robertogreco
La trompeta de Deyá · ELPAÍ
"La perfecta complicidad, la secreta Inteligencia que parecía unirlos...Era difícil determinar quién había leído más y mejor, y cuál de los dos decía cosas más agudas e inesperadas sobre libros y autores. Que Julio escribiera y Aurora sólo tradujera (en su caso ese sólo quiere decir todo lo contrario de lo que parece claro está) es algo que yo siempre supuse provisional...

Esto no significa que fuera libresco, erudito, intelectual, a la manera de un Borges, por ejemplo, que con toda justicia escribió: "Muchas cosas he leído y pocas he vivido". En Julio la literatura parecía disolverse en la experiencia cotidiana e impregnar toda la vida, animándola y enriqueciéndola con un fulgor particular sin privarla de savia, de instinto, de espontaneidad..."
mariovargasllosa  juliocortázar  writing  partnerships  glvo  translation  literature  conversation 
august 2010 by robertogreco
Mario Vargas Llosa: Cortázar, veinte años: La trompeta de Deyá
"En su caso, a diferencia de tantos colegas nuestros que optaron por una militancia semejante pero por esnobismo u oportunismo -un modus vivendi y una manera de escalar posiciones en el establecimiento intelectual, que era y en cierta forma sigue siendo monopolio de la izquierda en el mundo de lengua española-, esta mudanza fue genuina, dictada más por la ética que por la ideología (a la que siguió siendo alérgico) y de una coherencia total. Su vida se organizó en función de ella, y se volvió pública, casi promiscua, y buena parte de su obra se dispersó en la circunstancia y en la actualidad, hasta parecer escrita por otra persona, muy distinta de aquella que, antes, percibía la política como algo lejano y con irónico desdén."
mariovargasllosa  juliocortázar  socialism  politics  happiness  jazz  pretension  authenticity  youth 
august 2010 by robertogreco
Julio Cortázar, el del jazz -
"Jorge Luis Borges es, en el contexto de estas líneas, el de las milongas. Y Julio Cortázar, el del jazz.

Mientras Borges echaba una mirada retrospectiva para salvar del olvido (en pleno auge del modernismo) al cuchillero de extramuros con el que construyó toda una mitología poética y ensayística plasmada, por ejemplo, en "Para la seis cuerdas" y en "Evaristo Carriego", Cortázar trasladaba su origen barrial, su asimilación europea, su cultura formal de clase media, y su mundo alternativo entre París y Plaza Once a lo largo de sus cuentos y novelas, mientras husmeaba en el mundo del jazz.

En sus obras, Cortázar desordenaba el arte en favor de la vida, al cuestionar el lenguaje establecido."
borges  juliocortázar  music  jazz  milongas  argentina  gabrielgarcíamárquez  theloniousmonk  charlieparker  carlosfuentes 
august 2010 by robertogreco

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