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      Sasha Soldatow   1947 - 2006

      Wednesday 30.08.06

Contemporaries in the Gong

The Contemporaries

Csaba Loosz . Gabrielle Gibson . Greer Taylor
Jenny Tubby . June Lord . Keith Rutherford
Kurt Brereton . Leila Vassilakoglou. Rachael Hill.

Opening Friday 1 September 5.30pm
Belly Babes Opening night Entertainment:
Trio Zafiros perform ethereal acapella songs from around the world.
Leila from Belly Babes will be dancing. Catering: Indian by Dr D

29 August - 17 September
Tuesday to Friday 10 to 5
Sunday 11 to 4

De Havilland Gallery
unit 1 105 - 107 Church Street
Wollongong NSW 2500

61 02 4226 2929

            Kurt Brereton, 2006 (Foto: Debbie Livingstone)

Kurt Brereton, a participant in Contemporaries,
recently presented a talk on Patheticism
Download the Pathetic Manifesto

Rudi Krausmann's New Book

                         Rudi Krausmann, Sydney, 1982

Right about now I thought I'd be ascending the steps to Gleebooks Upstairs for this afternoon's launch of Rudi Krausmann's new book 'News'. But unfortunately the event has been postponed until November as Rudi has taken ill. The book, a limited edition collectors' hardback, was to be heralded into the world by antiquarian & specialist bookseller, poet, raconteur and bon vivant (or general 'good guy'), Nicholas Pounder. As a way of wishing Rudi a speedy recovery, I'll post some notes instead of sharing a glass of wine to celebrate his new book.

                  Rudi Krausmann, reading for peace in Paddington, Sydney in 2001 (foto: Annette Willis)

Rudi Krausmann was born in Mauerkirchen, Austria, in 1933. He has said that because his mother was German and his father was Austrian he had felt like a stranger in his own country. He studied Economics in Vienna for two-and-a-half years and worked as a journalist for the Austrian newspaper, Salzburger Nachrichten. He came to Australia in the 1960s and he worked variously as a freelance writer and editor, a part-time tutor at the University of New South Wales, a language teacher in Sydney and Melbourne and as a radio broadcaster.

Rudi considers himself to be a German poet writing in Australia and one of his themes is 'exile'. In Sydney in 1975 he founded the influential magazine Aspect: Art and Literature, in an endeavour to interrelate literature and the visual arts. The magazine ran for several years. He was Creative Arts Fellow at the Australian National University in Canberra in 1980 and since then he has been writer-in-residence at several institutions. He returned to Austria in the 1990s, but returned to Australia to live in Sydney. Rudi and his partner, Flis, spent six months living in Paris last year.

Rudi often asks his friends to illustrate his books. In 2002 I was happy to launch Maps, a bilingual collection of poems with drawings by Andrew Sibley. His latest book News : Fast Flowers, Long Journeys, Cold Funerals that was to be launched today has drawings by noted Sydney artist Garry Shead. It is also a bilingual (English & German) publication with haiku-style poems. The topics range from Germaine Greer to the Sydney Museum of Contemporary Art. Rudi also muses upon fellow poets - both Australian and international - and famous writers, philosophers and artists in a series of 60 short verses which are accompanied by equally succinct and pithy drawings. Together, poet and artist explore the idiosyncrasies and vicissitudes of human nature and of creative lives through the medium of this elegantly bound collectors' edition. It's published by Macmillan Australia and you can buy it at Gleebooks

In 1994 Rudi collaborated with Gisela Triesch to translate 80 Australian poets into German. Made In Australia was published by Gerald Gangblauer's Gan Gan Books

You can read some of Rudi's poems and find out more about him by typing 'Rudi Krausmann' into the search panel on gangway online magazine. You can also find a list of Rudi's many books and radio and theatre plays and listen to audio files here

Canberra Art in Sydney
Book Launch in Canberra

canberra '06

opening drinks with the artists
tuesday 15th august 6pm

maunsell wickes
Barry Stern Galleries
19 Glenmore Road

show runs until 29th august
tues-sat 11am-5.30pm
sundays 1-5pm

Micky Allan, who has been exhibiting in Australia and internationally for over 30 years, has some works on paper in this group show. Worth visiting to see what she's up to these days.

           Night 1, 2005 - engraved glass panels over pastel on paper

In 2005, Canberra painter Jude Rae won the Portia Geach Portrait Prize in Sydney with this portrait of Micky Allan a.k.a 'Nada'

Canberra poet Steve K. Kelen's new book
Earthly Delights published by Pandanus Books
will be launched by Geoff Page

6.30pm Wednesday 23rd August
The Front Studio and Gallery
Corner Wattle and Crear Streets
Lyneham Canberra

            Steve Kelen and friends, Macau, 2005. Foto by Carol Archer

I have added the 'speeches' with which I launched John Tranter's and Peter Minter's new poetry collections earlier this year and Philip Hammial's book in late 2005 to the extras page on my website.

Murray Bookchin

                                        Murray Bookchin 1921-2006

Murray Bookchin, social critic, environmentalist, self-described anarchist and founder of social ecology, died at the end of July.

Six obituaries:

  • one

  • two

  • three

  • four

  • five

  • six

  • New online zines
    Recently read titles
    Two CDs

    Kate Fagan has announced the new issue of How2

    Vol. 2 Issue 4

    A galactic range of poems, critical reviews and papers... with special features on Pacific poetries, innovation in contemporary Indian writing,'outer alphabets' and London innovation, forums on small press publishing and bookarts, contemporary Chinese poetry in translation and tributes to Barbara Guest

    PACIFIC POETRIES + edited by Susan M. Schultz + featuring Tusiata Avia + Pam Brown + Faye Kicknosway + Selina Tusitala Marsh + Deborah Meadows + Meredith
    Quartermain + Barbara Jane Reyes + Shin Yu Pai + Hazel Smith + Teresia Teaiwa + Zhang Er + and an interview by Jane Sprague with Susan Schultz on Tinfish Press?

    INDIAN INNOVATION * edited by Mani Rao *
    featuring Jane Bhandari * Priya Surukkai Chabria * Sampurna Chattarji * Mamang Dai * Minal Hajratwala + Jam Ismail * Kavita Jindal * Smita Rajan * Mani Rao * Archna Sahni * Rati Saxena * Menka Shivdasani * Arundhathi Subramaniam

    OUTER ALPHABETS = edited by Kate Fagan =
    featuring Jill Magi = Claire Hero = Chris Turnbull = Beth Bretl = Kristi Maxwell = Heather Woods = Marthe Reed = Evelyn Reilly = Mary Kasimor = Britta Kallevang = Arpine Grenier = A. K. Allin = Sascha Akhtar = Mary Michaels = Jennifer Firestone = Cristina Bellodi = Masha Tupitsyn = Megan Jones = Claire Potter = Marie Buck = Ellen Baxt = Jenny Boully = Bronwen Tate = Michelle Detorie = Sarah Vap = Sarah Dowling

    LONDON CALLING + edited by Redell Olsen + featuring Rosheen Brennan + Emily
    Critchley + Kai Fierle-Hedrick + Kristen Kreider + Frances Kruk + Marianne
    Morris + Sophie Robinson + Lydia White

    CONTEMPORARY CHINESE POETRY IN TRANSLATION = edited by Zhang Er and Chen Dongdong = featuring Cao Shuying = Lan Lan = Ma Lan = Tang Danhong = Zhang Er = Zhang Zhen = Zhao Xia = Zhou Za

    BOOKARTS FEATURE * curated by Susan Johanknecht
    * with Sarah Jacobs * Lin Charlston * A C Berkheiser * Sharon Kivland * Heather Weston * Emily Artinian * Anna Trethewey

    SMALL PRESS PUBLISHING FORUM = convened by Jane Sprague = Daniel Bouchard = Mary Burger = Allison Cobb = Kristen Gallagher = Jocelyn Saidenberg = Judith Goldman = Rachel Levitsky = Jill Magi = Bill Marsh = Anna Moschovakis = Elizabeth Robinson = Kaia Sand

    Plus new work by Linda Mari Walker, Joyelle McSweeney, Ren Powell, Randall Couch

    And reviews of Barbara Guest, Kathleen Fraser, Rachel Blau DuPlessis, Brenda Iijima, Catherine Daly, Thalia Field, Andrea Baker, Catherine Wagner, Ann Lauterbach, Elizabeth Willis, Lisa Fishman, Pam Rehm & Gertrude Stein

    Editor: Kate Fagan (Sydney)
    Managing Editor: Redell Olsen (London)
    Designer: John Sparrow (Arizona)

    Please visit the new How2 archives

    Mark Young, editor of Otoliths has announced the second issue of this eclectic poetry and visual e-zine.

    It contains work by Karl Young, Juhana Vahanen (translated by Karri Kokko), Martin Edmond, Rochelle Ratner, Louise Landes Levi, Cath Vidler, Michael Farrell, Christian Jensen, Ira Joel Haber, Bruce Covey, Jill Jones, Allen Bramhall, Derek Motion, Caleb Puckett, Sandra Simonds (a mini-chap —The Tar Pit Diatoms), Vernon Frazer, Pat Nolan, Donald Illich, J.D. Nelson, harry k stammer, Steve Tills, David Meltzer, Tom Beckett, Thomas Fink, Crag Hill, Ira Cohen, Carol Jenkins, Miia Toivio, John M. Bennett, Michael Rothenberg, Geof Huth, David-Baptiste Chirot, Aki Salmela, Sandy McIntosh, Michelle Greenblatt, Janne Nummela, Tom Hibbard, Marko J. Niemi, Phil Primeau, Kevin Opstedal, Olli Sinivaara, Nico Vassilakis & John M. Bennett, Michael McClure, Pam Brown, Leevi Lehto & Eileen Tabios.

    Print on demand editions of Otoliths issue one and its associated chapbooks from Jean Vengua and from Ray Craig are available here.

    John Tranter has announced issue 30 of Jacket.
    It's packed to the gunnels,
    or should that be gunwales, as usual.

    David Prater announces the latest issue of Cordite - Common Wealth features over fifty new poems by Australian and international poets including Kris Hemensley, Kevin Brophy, Ban'ya Natsuishi, Carol Jenkins, Aileen Kelly, Rebekah Moon, Todd Swift, Diane Fahey and many more

    Plus Candylands a special American poetry feature edited by Michael Farrell including poems by Catherine Daly, Kevin Killian, Del Ray Cross, Judith Bishop, Mary Jo Bang and more.

    Features and reviews are now posted on a rolling basis - giving you even more reasons to check back to the site. Recent features include Adam Fieled on post-avant poetry and Leanne Hills on rooku and Melbourne's trains. Also, Paul Mitchell reviews Les Murray's 'The Bi-Plane Houses'

    Three books I've read recently

                         Photo by Jean Mohr

    John Berger is 80 years of age this year. There was a kind of festschrift to celebrate and explore his life and work in London, U.K. last year. I've read many of his books but I think my 'favourites' are To The Wedding, a book that deals with AIDS, and King, A Street Story a tale told by a dog who hangs around with a group of homeless people in a junk-filled wasteland beside a motorway in post-Bosnian-war Europe. This new book Here Is Where We Meet, typically, mixes genres and defies categorisation.

    In Here Is Where We Meet, a man named John meets the ghost of his late mother in Lisbon. He travels throughout Europe, visiting the ghosts of those who have influenced his life. He meets a friend from his war years in London, in Krakow he meets the older man who introduced him to books and sex, and in Madrid he finds the schoolmaster who taught him how to write. The ghosts have each chosen the city for their afterlife that best suits them. John Berger's novel is an exploration of this past that makes both a person and a city or civilization. Here Is Where We Meet has received positive reviews with the 'New Statesman' saying, 'Formally, Here Is Where We Meet is recognisably a genre that Berger long ago made his own: the rich amalgam of novel, essay and autobiography.'

    You can read multiple reviews of Here Is Where We Meet.

    The publisher, Scribe, describes Herzl's Nightmare this way:
    'Theodor Herzl's dream of a national homeland for the Jewish people was realised when Israel declared its independence in 1948 - a triumph achieved in little more than half a century. Yet it was made possible only through the deaths of millions of European Jews and at the expense of Palestinian society. Whatever their historical claim or emotional attachment to the land they came to rule, the Jews of Israel had supplanted another people - a people who would not forget what they saw as a grave injustice. Herzl's dream of ending Jewish insecurity, once and for all, would prove illusory.

    While the story of the conflict between Jew and Palestinian in the past century has its share of both political and military and human triumphs, too often the recurring themes are those of lies and hypocrisy, myth-making and mutual demonisation and of a determined, energetic refusal to contemplate and acknowledge the other's history and point of view.

    This important new study shows how little the dynamics of the conflict have actually changed; how eerily reminiscent today's antagonisms and falsehoods are of yesteryear's; how 'modern' leadership is anything but; and how much today's self-righteous intransigence owes to what went before. Peter Rodgers brings a rare understanding of the recent history of the region to explain with fair-minded clarity the nightmare of modern Israel and Palestine.'

    The Australian author, Peter Rodgers, is a former journalist and an Ambassador to Israel.

    Rachel Loden has kindly sent me the annual of poetry and poetics New American Writing - 24 for 2006.
    It's a solid read - a mix of poetry edited by Maxine Chernoff and Paul Hoover and with a great big barcode on the front cover, just below the underwater image from Bill Viola's video The Messenger.
    There's a feature on Nathaniel Mackey, poetry by Nguyen Trai, Neruda, Holan, Lopez-Colome and many usual and unusual suspects - Pierre Joris, Rosemary Waldrop, Douglas Messerli, Noelle Kocot and Andrew Early. That list covers only some the contents.

    Meanwhile, the music of Burkina Faso-born Cheikh LÔ and Malians Ali Farka Touré who died last year, and the griot Toumani Diabaté has been warming the wintry air in the little flat we inhabit in Rose Bay, Sydney.

    The CD titles are Lamp Fall and In The Heart of the Moon

           Cheikh LÔ
           Toumani Diabaté and the late Ali Farka Touré