BOMB 135, Spring 2016

The cover of BOMB 135

Featuring interviews with Ryan Trecartin, Shezad Dawood, Sadie Benning, Wendy Ewald, Trevor Paglen, Jacob Appelbaum, Ivan Vladislavić, Álvaro Enrigue, Christopher Sorrentino, Vijay Iyer, and Yorgos Lanthimos.

time was when what time was was what time is is time what it was or is it what time is it when one sweaty noun baking in the sun on a Mediterranean island and now several poetic gestures along with a few good philosophical questions emerge all about the same time round about the same fig.

David Means's Hystopia

by Chantal McStay

Means makes his guiding framework immediately clear, opening with a quote from psychiatrist Jonathan Shay, who contends, "Traumatic memory is not narrative" but an onslaught of "disconnected fragments."

You're telling me:
chicanery, the moorhen,
the long triple happy fluid,
the orange response.
By golly that tastes good.

Around this time I became a frequent visitor to a sex-ad bulletin board. Real-life meetups were the focal point. Another year and the site had become overwhelmed by spam robots and prostitutes; one year more and it had become a tabloid target for the occasional murder; but for the happy moment in question it was a haven where perverts freely mingled without too much hassle.

From Dispatches from Moments of Calm

by Alexander Kluge Gerhard Richter

In 1946 the Russian astrophysicist Gamow, transported in a US Air Force plane from California to Canada, from there to Washington, and from there to Florida, on each occasion to deliver a lecture, saw WITH HIS OWN EYES—while waiting in a noisy café on New York's Fifth Avenue during one of the few quiet moments he had to himself—the rotation of atoms and subatomic particles, their spin, the constant revolution of molecules and planets, the rapidly turning stars, galaxies and superclusters.

Charles Simonds's Dwelling

by Stephanie Weber

When an image of one of his dwellings first appeared in an art magazine (after Simonds's participation in the 1974 Whitney Biennial), he felt a pang of regret. From today's standpoint, it is hard to fathom what it means to create as much work as he has without representing it.


by Charity Coleman

Kari Cwynar and Kendra Sullivan's curation of Accompaniment, a group show at EFA Project Space, is meticulous and airtight—the curatorial statement (a chapbook in itself) is a feat of textual and didactic density that leaves no stone or song unparsed.

Ryan Trecartin

by Sarah Lehrer-Graiwer

“I liked thinking about the word occupy literally. To occupy something. To occupy a sensation or a history and then to be kicked out of it and be squatting near it and trying to reinvest in it.”

Mohsen Namjoo & Ensemble

by Roja Heydarpour

Iranians are experts in evoking nostalgia for the present and we haven't had a musician who put his finger on that tension quite like Namjoo until now—at least here in the West.

Wendy Ewald

by Esther Allen

“I want the people I collaborate with to understand that they can move a way from the realities they’ve been placed into, that they can create a reality.”

Naufus Ramírez-Figueroa

by Regina José Galindo

Not only did his videos, drawings, watercolors, and archives burn, the blaze in Vancouver also consumed a part of his life, his past. He left behind his years of exile in Mexico and Canada, his memories of a convulsed era in Guatemala. His work, once the fire died, was never the same.

The tint hid you. Something about being in hell, and having no duties because of it. That tilt into freedom. I've never been so, eject my previous works, break with them like a vine entering an Egyptian organization of stone fallen into common apex obsolescence. Its walls come out in fistfuls and the dead flower through.

I like to think about what other people do when they're alone. This is what I would really like to know about people, but I never know how to ask. Some people try never to be alone. I once read that about Susan Sontag. That she insisted someone always be with her, when she was eating breakfast, when she was agitating around some idea. I wonder what it would have been like to be Susan Sontag.

Anna K.E.

by Corrine Fitzpatrick

As Anna K.E. explains it, first a picture comes to her, then she completes the action. She is guided by intuition as opposed to choreography, which, one could argue, is intuition highly structured.

Ivan Vladislavić

by Katie Kitamura

“My imagination was shaped in a period of extreme rigidity in the social and political system. The apartheid system was about putting physical space between people. So an encounter with the other, with the neighbor or the stranger, has always seemed central to me.”

Shezad Dawood

by Doug Ashford

“I’m a believer in ‘the artist proposes and the universe disposes.’ On that meeting ground is where the important stuff happens for me, where a set of images, possibilities, dialogues with people both living and dead actually start forming.”

Trevor Paglen and Jacob Appelbaum

"The Internet is a predatory network that is, on one side, potentially a very coercive tool of totalitarian power and, on the other side, a tool that will increasingly be used to allocate rights and privileges through commercial means. Can we envision a different kind of network?"

Christopher Sorrentino

by Dana Spiotta

“I intended The Fugitives to be as close to a zero-research book as possible. I decided that if I couldn’t find something with Google in ten minutes, then I should forget it, or make it up.”

Sadie Benning

by Lia Gangitano

“With film, you have sound and you can construct this whole environment that allows for a certain feeling to exist for someone watching. There’s more of a burden on a painting to develop these kinds of feelings or experiences in one frame.”

Vijay Iyer

by Mendi Obadike Keith Obadike

“Asymmetry is part of what makes us human, and it’s what makes our actions feel human. And we only know that because we can have a programmer make something play ‘perfectly,’ and it sounds terrible.”

Álvaro Enrigue

by Scott Esposito

“A writer worried about reception is cooking a dead book. A writer’s job is to produce the best possible book in absolute freedom, so the category ‘acceptable’ does not play in the process at all.”

BOMB 135
Spring 2016
The cover of BOMB 135