Before Kubin became active as an artist, there was another artist named Max Klinger. A unique artist who is most remembered for a series of prints concerning a woman's dropped glove, a suitors attempt to return it, and an enormous bat-like creature. These prints were done in the 1880's , and at time they were titled "A Glove."...Kubin saw these prints as a young artist and that became a Revelation, and a Turning Point. In my series "The Book" I put Kubin's moment at night in an old renovated theater just before a Festival...perhaps a film festival - is about to begin...Not far removed in some ways from the night time variety theater where Kubin actually had his life altering experience.
Kubin an artist, leaves the theater and finds a place called the "Maelstrom"...This place exists in Osaka, Japan and I have been to it. It does have everything as described in "The Book " including strangely enough, the enormous bat-like creature . In "the Book" it is more of a state of mind ( or the inside of Kubin's mind ).
" The Narrative of A. G. Smith " is Poe's only novel. It did catch the eye of the early surrealists...and other writers such as Melville, and JuIes Verne who wrote a sequel to it ...In the exact middle of the novel there is an interesting turn of events, and this has always fascinated me on a couple of different levels...I always liked the film Fahrenheit 451, based on the novel by Ray Bradbury, and directed by Francois Truffaut. At the end of the film the main character meets people living in exile who memorize books, and become books. He is introduced to these living books and at one point a young says that she is a book by Poe. The woman in "The Book" is in part from this...a good book is more than a book...shape shifters...morphing...
The character Kubin writes a novel that under the surface is much more than - just a horror novel. That is important to me ...but the series is not so much about that specific book as The Idea, Consequences, and Alchemy. Next a character that might be Kafka, in a city that is Prague, or maybe like Prague is reading a book - and becomes inspired. This scene is also about the physical experience of a book...the texture, the smell, the imperfections... Eight is the number to me of infinity, and when a work of art is on its highest realization it becomes this to me. the date is 08/08/08 a time that the imaginative writer Kafka did live. The quote in French, is from a print by Redon..." The eye a strange balloon moves tword the infinite"... it is from his series of 6 prints titled, "To Edgar Allan Poe" ...At this same time the painter Magrette has his first memory ...later as a surrealists he does a painting where a book with the title - "The Narrative of A. G. Pym" by E. A. Poe - is a key element...The next image in "The Book" is of an open book. On one side is the hand written first page of " The Narrative of A. G. Pym," with all the human, and to me interesting imperfections that go into creating. The other page is the last page of "Landor's Cottage" by Poe. The words below the painting are words from an earlier page of the book...But Backwards ...This is a reference to that key moment in the middle of the Poe novel where things take a dramatic turn.
The last image in the series with words has an open book with " The Raven" written in French at the top of the first page. This is a reference to Baudelaire ( who is on the wall of the Maelstrom along with Poe ). Baudelaire translated Poe to French , and by doing so set in motion the symbolists, and decadents, along with influencing Klinger, Redon, and Kubin.
In the open book is the constellation Orion. The mass is the exploding cosmic phenomenon found in that immediately recognizable constellation. Poe was a major influence on Lovecraft...who without a doubt loved books, and wrote about valued books containing knowledge...and who I am sure had A Revelation when he first read Poe.
Studies, Sketches, Proofs, Notes, Journals, Diaries, Ideas, Accidents, Juxtapositions, The Discarded, The Found, Alchemy...I have an interest in works before they are perfected, fully developed, or taken to what is generally accepted as complete...the first idea...corrections...the raw and unrefined... unpolished works that are a record of a moment, as well as intensity, urgency, and thought...a record of where the lighting struck.
"Gentlemen when two separate events occur simultaneously pertaining to the same object of inquiry we must always pay strict attention...fellows lets make a house call."
Special Agent Dale Cooper ( Twin Peaks )
All works © David Verba: No images may be used without permission from the artist.