*Slow Reading Club, Quarter Bloom (nape written as nape), 2018*
Concrete tubes, fabrics, transfer lettering, metal clasps.
Slow Reading Club, Cheek written as Cheek, 2018
Packing tubes, fabrics, paint, transfer lettering, shelving unit, fleamarket keychains.
Slow Reading Club, Shoulder written as Shoulder, 2018
Packing tubes, fabric, paint
*Slow Reading Club, Huddle Bloomer (back written as back), 2018*
Fabric, half shelving unit, bookbinder’s thread, fleamarket keys
“Sébastien: On the theme of encryption we should also mention next the work of Slow Reading Club. Using the form of the scytale, one of the earliest techniques in ancient Greece for transporting encrypted messages across distance, they have made three sculptures that they have sent to LA and another that is here in Angers. In LA they have used a technique of wrapping the text around a certain size baton, which allows the letters to align into a legible form. When the text is removed from the baton for transport, the message is illegible and only becomes readable once wrapped around a baton of the same size. [In writing and in reading, wrapping produces volume and legibility]
Maud: And here in Angers they have used a woven grid as a surface for writing. It is draped over concrete casts of the 6 packing tubes that they used to transport the other texts to LA.
Sébastien: This is a beautiful form of 3 dimensional language. I mean here how dimensional space impacts the possibility of both writing and reading. [Slow Reading Club imagines the text as (just) one body amongst many bodies - sweating, groping licking, squeezing, snorting, fucking, eating, stripping, squirting, slapping, stroking, dripping, smelling, sucking, teething, birthing...] A text is woven, or wrapped around a spatial volume, and to read it you have to reimagine, or reconstruct the volume that is missing. It’s very poetic in a way.
Anna: The text they were working with came from a medieval medical manual [On Healing and Society, A Middle English Translation of the Pharmaceutical Writings of Gilbertus Anglicus.] referencing explorations of the guts and stomach, spaces hidden within the body and early medical efforts to disclose these invisible and inarticulate caverns of the body and its secrets. [And use medicins, and aftir castith it up, and twies renew it, and plastir it on, and ley it al warme, and with bottir, and roses hackd smale]
Maud: There is something also about trying to decrypt the body itself as if it were a language. ["That that weren tolde in the coughe"] So again you have this connection between translation and questions of embodiment. The scytale itself is also a cypher for the singularity of the body, since the text can only be deciphered and gains significance when wrapped around the appropriately sized baton.”
This text is an excerpt [with SRC insertions] from the performance The Infiltration by Joshua Schwebel whose project was to infiltrate the curators’ position in the exhibition.Read more