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ABOUT HAYMARKET SQUARE

Once there was a period in European history called “Weimar Germany” - a brief but fecund period not only for the arts but also for all the demonic arts when both fate and God liked to use humans for a canvas.

For best, it produced art.

For worst, history repeats itself.

But in each anthill, every ant has a story.

After the collapse of the USSR, the mid 1990s in the new state called the ‘Russian Federation’ there was much media coverage about coincidental fabulous wealth and dreadful privation. That’s how it always goes, but what about those lost in the cogs of the machine, who as much as they try to change gears are doomed to fail and only serve as untold tales of what exactly’s in the crematorium of dreams?

Alex Bobrov is based on the character of Franz Biberkopf, of Alfred Doblin’s spectacular ‘novel of the city’ which was beautifully translated to the screen by R.W. Fassbinder in his even more monumental epic ‘Berlin Alexanderplatz’.

Doblin’s novel, unfortunately is practically unreadable, even for native German speakers. As a modernist experiment it is on the level of  Joyce’s Ulysses or Bely’s Petersburg or Dos Passos’ Manhattan Transfer in its difficulty – but it was only through Fassbinder’s tremendous experiment of going back right to the central character that reconnected the viewer and the reader with the quotidian reality.

And the roots of the tree are that which makes it grow and bear fruit.

Haymarket Square is a short novella in verse by author, poet, screenwriter, director and a bit of Alex Bobrov in his own turn, John Kolchak.

Illustrated by artist, architect, poet and overall polymath Scott Corkern, Haymarket Square is the story of the construction of an anthill, from an ant’s eye view.

 

© John Kolchak All rights reserved.
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