Folie a Deux

Litzine, Van­nessa Barnier and Gabriel Puchiele, free

Broken Pencil - - Table Contents - by Van­nessa Barnier and Gabriel Puchiele …

Let­ting loose in a col­lab­o­ra­tive ef­fort can quite of­ten be dif­fi­cult. There are stan­dards one must up­hold with a part­ner in cre­ative crime. How­ever, the task seems al­most ef­fort­less for Barnier and Puchiele. Folie à deux, as Barnier ex­plains, is a si­t­u­a­tion in which two peo­ple share one delu­sion. Usu­ally, she goes on, one per­son is more dom­i­nant in the sus­tain­ing of the delu­sion than the other — but in this zine, she says, “this is a folie à deux with two dom­i­nant psy­chotic in­di­vid­u­als!”

Con­sist­ing of six po­ems from Barnier and il­lus­tra­tions by Puchiele on the one side, this zine flips, and so to does the cre­ative ef­fort — now, there are six po­ems from Puchiele, and ac­com­pa­ny­ing il­lus­tra­tions by Barnier. All of it, starkly black-and-white on glossy pa­per, reads more like an ac­com­pa­ni­ment to an LP than a litzine, but re­mained com­pelling through­out. Both the po­ems and the il­lus­tra­tions were unset­tling in a fa­mil­iar way, fo­cus­ing on what in daily life can make us ner­vous, para­noid, delu­sional: dreams, un­cer­tain iden­ti­ties, un­known eyes glanc­ing in our di­rec­tion. For Barnier, re­sis­tance is nec­es­sary — “I’m not for­feit­ing, I’m min­i­miz­ing.” Cut­ting away the ex­cess — mov­ing through this delu­sion — we make it to the end of Barnier’s sec­tion feel­ing un­set­tled, but as­sured.

Puchiele, then, re­turns us to floun­der­ing about in our anx­i­ety. Imag­ined con­ver­sa­tions with the Devil and a lawyer who may or may not also be the imag­ined Devil, un­hinge these works from the de­luded but ul­ti­mately re­al­is­tic space Barnier’s po­ems oc­cu­pied. Here, Puchiele in­hab­its an en­tirely imag­ined realm wherein “no one re­mem­bers this week and ev­ery­body knows what’s hap­pen­ing next week.” Barnier’s el­e­gant pen­cil line draw­ings ground these po­ems in a space that would oth­er­wise see them lost en­tirely to an art­lessly non­sen­si­cal at­mos­phere.

Since this litzine can be read front to back or back to front, its non-lin­ear ex­is­tence makes for a pleas­antly dif­fi­cult read­ing ex­pe­ri­ence. Delu­sional in na­ture it may be, but not, it seems, in ex­e­cu­tion. (Ter­rence Abrahams)

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from Canada

© PressReader. All rights reserved.