In the wings some special things…

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.

* * *

drawing by Doug Skinner

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 The artist has now rounded up all these drawings (along with previously unpublished specimens) for his forthcoming collection Instrumentarium.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.

drawing by Doug Skinner

Happy Summer!

Theatre of the Absurd—Opening Night!

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“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.

 

 

 

In the wings, some special things (seventh edition)…

 

There is a lot of excitement buzzing around our editorial bunker here in northern California. We are adding quite a few titles to our growing list of sublime art & literature, with books by Alphonse Allais, Alain Arias-MissonMark AxelrodPierre-Corneille de Blessebois, Catherine D’Avis, Farewell Debut, Edith Doove, Eckhard Gerdes, Richard Kostelanetz, Terri Lloyd, Doug Rice, and Carla M. Wilson, among others. As always, expect some surprises, including  (we hope) a book once listed as forthcoming by the great Gaberbocchus Press in London that, alas, never appeared. For now, that’s all we’re at liberty to divulge.

For those who missed out on collecting all 31 titles in the Absurdist Texts & Documents series, we suggest getting in on the ground floor of our New Urge imprint—devoted to contemporary erotic fiction by writers from Europe and North America. The first volume, White Fire & Other Tales by Cody Kmoch has just been released, with four more scheduled to appear in 2015. These sensual trade paper editions are numbered sequentially, handsomely designed, and custom-sized  (5 x 7.7 inches) for your comfort and edification.

We should also mention that our magazine Black Scat Review has been redesigned, and will sport a new look when its eleventh issue appears in the spring.

Here are a few goodies waiting in the wings.

SQUAD

THE SQUADRON’S UMBRELLA 
by Alphonse Allais
Translated from the French by Doug Skinner
FIRST PUBLICATION IN ENGLISH

A collection of 39 pieces by the great French absurdist. This is quintessential Allais, featuring some of his funniest texts—never before translated.

In regards to the significance of the title, Allais states in his preface the following:

“I have entitled this book The Squadron’s Umbrella for two reasons, which I ask the reader’s indulgence to tick off before him.

  1. There is no mention, in my volume, of umbrellas of any kind.
  2. The vital question of the squadron, considered as a unit of combat, is not even broached.”

That pretty much says it all.


 

UPDATE 1/30 —ON SALE NOW

cropped

ANGEL OF EVERYTHING
by Catherine D’Avis
Translated from the French by Kenneth D. Fletcher
FIRST PUBLICATION IN ENGLISH

Bored with her life in a quiet, French coastal town and desperate for excitement, Emma sends out a prayer to the Angel of Happenings. When she meets an enigmatic Parisian photographer, her wish appears to have come true, until she finds herself drawn into an intimate world of erotic temptations, obsession and danger.

The controversial novel L’ange de toutes choses originally appeared in Paris in 2012. Published under the pseudonymous initials “C.A.,” the work received favorable reviews, as well as the condemnation reserved for works in this arena. Ms. D’Avis’s writing has been compared to the novelist Marguerite Duras.

ORDER ON AMAZON

 


 “The Zombie of Great-Peru marks an extremely important literary occasion.” —Apollinaire

Guillaume Apollinaire

THE ZOMBIE OF GREAT-PERU
by Pierre-Corneille de Blessebois
Preface by Guillaume Apollinaire
Translated from the French by Doug Skinner
FIRST PUBLICATION IN ENGLISH

Black Scat Books will proudly resurrect this rollicking novel featuring the first mention of zombies in world literature! Originally published in 1697, it offers “a biting satire of colonial society as licentious, credulous, and possessed by its own belief in zombis.”*

In the words of translator Doug Skinner, this libertine tale is “Great fun. Filled with sex, slapstick, deceit, and fake zombies.”

Who could ask for anything more?

___
*Doris Garraway, The Libertine Colony


mince-ed

MINCE
by Edith Doove

A collection of poems & observations by a gifted young British writer. These works were originally written in Dutch and composed over a ten year period.

Ms. Doove has a sharp eye and her words whisper fresh visions.

PUBLICATION; January 31, 2015