Street Talk: Amsterdam Stephen Willats

Published by Occasional Papers, London, 2011, 32 pages (colour & b/w ill.), 15 × 22 cm, English

Price: €11

Street Talk is the record of a project by conceptual artist Stephen Willats in which he filmed (unbeknownst to them) passers-by walking down two streets in Amsterdam. The captioned film stills in Street Talk document both the endless streams of interactions that inform ‘daily life’ and the fleeting connections with friends or strangers that interrupt these streams. As Willats writes, ‘the act of walking together, side by side, is fundamental to acts of sociability; it introduces fluidity and transience in the coding of language in a relationship when perceived by an external observer.’ Between documentary observation and poetic essay, Street Talk provides an effective introduction to Willats’ recent work, where urban spaces are deconstructed in order to expose underlying ‘bandwidths’ of visual, textual and aural information. This edition comes with a foldout map of Amsterdam.

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Born in Flames Lizzie Borden

Published by Occasional Papers, London, 2011, 21 × 30cm, 48 pages (colour ill.), English

Price: €12

Born in Flames – the publication – is the complete authorised graphic translation of Lizzie Borden’s mythical 1983 film ‘Born in Flames’. Kaisa Lassinaro’s post-facto screenplay captures all the political energy and visual brilliance of Borden’s film, which describes a futuristic society (eerily similar to our own) where the achievements of a past revolution are threatened by reactionary sexist forces. The film suggests various modes of female resistance – from armed struggle to intellectual opposition – without endorsing one strategy over another. The published version of Born in Flames allows for a frame-by-frame analysis of the film’s complex plot and soundtrack, with songs by The Bloods and Red Crayola. Included is an interview with Borden conducted by Lassinaro, in which the filmmaker looks back on the making of the film in late 70s/early 80s New York.

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