Saturday, November 24, 2012
Dances of Vice, Horror and Ecstasy
Although I am a little late with the news, Side Real Press have recently published what looks to be something of a masterpiece of the boutique publishers' art Dances of Vice, Horror and Ecstasy by Anita Berber and Sebastian Droste (above) was originally published in 1922 at the height of the Weimar decadence and has had something of a cult following, although hadn't been fully translated into English until now. It's a riot of drugs, dancing and homoeroticism, or as one critic of the original said: "it is difficult to imagine, let alone find, a more bizarre and complex relation between dance, writing, speech, nudity, and image than that found in this little book".
One of the problems with this kind of publishing is that, because a book is obscure, no one has enough background knowledge to know that they want to buy it when it is reprinted. This has been masterfully overcome by Side Real by the a brilliant, illustrated essay on their blog about both the authors and the book itself.