John Holten
The Readymades. By John Holten with Artworks by Darko Dragičević
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In this confident debut novel, Holten has extrapolated a whole missing art movement and their contemporary European picaresque saga, using and abusing a number of literary genres. The action begins during October 2008 in Paris, with John, a young Irish publisher, meeting the jaded Serbian artist Djordje Bojić. Bojić tells John about the manuscript he is writing: the history of the LGB Group – an Eastern European neo-avant-garde collective that arose in the turbulent environment of mid-1990s Belgrade, when Bojić and his friends, recently returned from the war in Bosnia, started to produce art in order to escape the hysterical nationalism all around them. Bojić’s manuscript makes up the final part of the novel. Starting out as an academic attempt to document the LGB Group, the sober attitude of the art-historical account soon collapses, and the narrative gradually turns into a disclosing life-story of violence and existential decay. As the manuscript moves closer to the horrific truths of Bojić’s own war experiences, the testimony gradually fails, becomes full of mute lacunas in order to finally reach the ineffable climax of the testimony: the burdens of trauma, the dumbness of loss, and the ultimate silence of Bojić’s own death.

Broken Dimanche 2019 2nd edition 328 pages Softcover 13.00 × 18.40 cm 370 gram ISBN 978-3-943196-78-8 English

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