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A few Miles outside of Atlantis

Joyce Mansour - Calls and Responses

Vanessa de Largie, Sandra Niermeyer, Xóchil A. Schütz und Ana Curra

“A few Miles…” is based on text passages of the prominent surrealistic poetess Joyce Mansour, taken from her volumes of verse published between 1953 and 1975.

Though born in England in 1928, Mansour spent her childhood and youth in Cairo, Egypt and moved to Paris in 1956. She was only 19 when she first married, yet this marriage tragically ended after only six months when her husband died. Her second husband was Sami Mansour whom she married in 1949. She began to write in French and soon had made herself known within the circle of the Paris surrealists. Content and tone of her poetry, the power of her words and imagery that knew no taboos had a tremendous impact. She died of cancer in 1986.

Her name and her brilliant oeuvre appear to have faded a little today. So the concept of inspiring contemporary authoresses to react with some type of call & response to Mansour’s lines is all the more delightful - a stream of word and thought across time. Four authoresses of most diverse backgrounds joined in to meet this special and intriguing artistic challenge. The text pairs are contraposed with expressive paintings and drawings.

The result is a very powerful mélange of writings and visuals, new shades and variations of Mansour’s motifs – evanescence (mortality) and Eros.

Two versions published: 

A soft cover, A4 format (8.2 x 11.6 inches) text and reader friendly edition of 50 copies and a special hard cover edition, with a Japanese binding in kidskin leather, A3 format (11.6 x 16.5 inches), a little more upfront illustration-wise with just a handful of copies.

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