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Conversation and Performance
7pm / University Library of Leuven / Duration: 90min / Language: Spanish (live translation in English)

This unique presentation takes its inspiration from the poem Un coup de dés jamais n’abolira le hazard by Stéphane Mallarmé and a rendition of the same poem by Marcel Broodthaers from 1969. Mallarmé is considered to be the first poet to free the poem—the text—from the monolithic page, allowing the words to float across the paper. In doing so any linear narrative became unravelled, bringing about a level of abstraction and autonomy to the language. Marcel Broodthaers went a step further. He covered each line of text with black blocks, rendering the text unreadable, transforming it into image: a rhythm of black, parallel lines, a score. Broodthaers printed his own name across the cover instead of Mallarmé’s and substituted the word “poem” with “image”.

Artist and curator Pedro G. Romero, artists’ book designer Filiep Tacq and the well-known flamenco dancer Israel Galván discussed the work of Mallarmé and its influence on flamenco, Broodthaers’ reframing of Mallarmé’s poem, the different meanings of the Spanish word ‘flamenco’—an inhabitant of Flanders vs. the Andalusian genres of music and dance—and whether making a book would be a way of reflecting on these different ideas.

During this performance, Romero and Tacq first attempted to shed light on these themes through text and language, and introduce the movements and music of Galván. Subsequently Israel Galván reflected upon their various questions through the language of dance.

P.S. The model tower in the university library is of the Giralda tower from the cathedral of Seville, the city in which Israel Galván and Pedro G. Romero both live.

Una tirada de dados… is part of The Book to Come, a research project about the performativity of artists’ books that starts from 5 books of artist Marcel Broodthaers. This series is commissioned by Bulegoa z/b.