Here at Black Scat we never sleep. As everyone heads off on vacation, you’ll find us huddled around our Macs, bringing sublime art and literature to print. There’s plenty of excitement ahead and we’re thrilled to announce these forthcoming releases.
Watch for a collection of works by the great Stefan Themerson who, with his wife, the artist Franciszka, founded the legendary Gaberbocchus Press (London, 1948-1979).
A poet, publisher, novelist, filmmaker, composer and philosopher, Stefan Themerson was a giant force in the avant-garde of the 20th century. A magus, a magician, his books are filled with wisdom, absurd humor, and dazzling ideas. His unique vision is more relevant today than ever, and thanks to Paul Rosheim, Black Scat will be bringing you Critics and My Talking Dog: Selected Stories, Essays, Lectures & a Play.
As the force behind Obscure Publications, Rosheim (with the guidance of British art critic, and founder of the Themerson Archive Jasia Reichardt) published a number of limited edition chapbooks by Themerson. He is busy compiling this seminal introduction to Stefan’s texts. The book will also feature an introduction by noted art historian and artist Nick Wadley.
This is destined to be a Scat classic.
Doug Skinner‘s delightfully absurd musical instruments appeared each month in the pages of our journal, Le Scat Noir. The artist has now rounded up all these drawings (along with previously unpublished specimens) for his forthcoming collection Instrumentarium. Even if you’re tone deaf, this book will have you humming along, clicking your fingers, tapping your feet and laughing out loud.
While you’re waiting, check out Skinner’s hilarious collection of comics, The Unknown Adjective and Other Stories. Originally published in 2014, it continues to be one of our most popular titles. But don’t take our word for it, look at these raves:
”Witty and ingenious comics from the exceptionally-talented writer, musician, performer, ventriloquist, and cartoonist Doug Skinner. It’s exciting to finally have these little-seen strips available in one beautiful book. You may be reminded of Voltaire or Ernie Bushmiller while reading these meticulously drawn stories featuring utterly hapless characters, but Mr. Skinner has a style all his own.” —R. Sikoryak
“Mr. Skinner knows many terrible, terrible secrets about us. We are once again fortunate that he chooses to share them so deftly and so altruistically.”—Mark Newgarden
You can grab a copy on Amazon at this LINK.
Stay tuned for more details on these sublime Scat titles. We also have a few surprises in store, so be sure to subscribe to this blog in the right-hand column here and you won’t miss a gem.
The February issue has just launched and you can read it for free at THIS LINK.
LE SCAT NOIR #220 features works by an international cast of misfits: Christopher Barnes, Paulo Brito, Eckhard Gerdes, Thomas Gresham, Colin James, Michael Leigh, Terri Lloyd, Samantha Memi, Frank Pulaski, Jason E. Rolfe, Merve Semsar, Doug Skinner, and Franciszka Themerson.
“Witkiewicz takes up and continues the vein of dream and grotesque fantasy exemplified by the late Strindberg or by Wedekind; his ideas are closely paralleled by those of the surrealists and Antonin Artaud which culminated in the masterpieces of the dramatists of the absurd—Beckett, Ionesco, Genet, Arrabal—of the late nineteen forties and the nineteen fifties.” -Martin Esslin
Stanisław Ignacy Witkiewicz (pen name: Witkacy) was desperate to get out of revolutionary St. Petersburg after the Bolsheviks seized power. Back in Poland, eager to make money and a name for himself, Witkacy began to write plays in a style that he called “Pure Form,” which foreshadowed the Theatre of the Absurd. By the time that he wrote VAHAZAR (1921), Witkacy had achieved a dreamlike dramaturgy: centered on the paranoid and crazed despot, Vahazar, and spiraling outwards through an anthill society of automatons, religious cults, and quack scientific and social theories, this play is about being trapped in nothingness.
This translation of the play by Celina Wieniewska was commissioned by Stefan Themerson in 1967, and later announced as a forthcoming title by the legendary Gaberbocchus Press. Somehow the project was sidetracked and has never appeared until this Black Scat Books publication. Paul Rosheim, publisher of Obscure Publications and scholar of Themersonia, provides a sublime introduction with biographical information about Witkacy and the story of this translation. The book also includes an appendix featuring Franciszka Themerson’s “Vahazar: A Few Suggestions for Design.”
“…Witkiewicz, Bruno Schulz and myself, the three musketeers of the Polish avant-garde.” —Witold Gombrowicz
Available now on Amazon in the U.S. and Europe.
Click here to order this masterpiece of the absurd.