Extract of review text by Fiona Glen, excerpted from MAP Magazine
Intertitles Review: Map Magazine
Long-form review of a landmark publication from Prototype press that celebrates work from the boundaries between writing and the visual arts. The anthology features work by emerging artists, as well as those who are driving forces in the growing interest of text-based practice in fine art sphere. Its thirty contributors include Jesse Darling, CAConrad, Johanna Hedva, Quinn Latimer, Ghislaine Leung, and Laure Prouvost.
Article published in April 2021 by MAP Magazine. Available to read in full here.
Strung through with work in which the creators have consciously located themselves, Intertitles feels intimate and generous. Hospitality comes through in many forms, from the genuine consideration given to the crafting of the book, to the sincerity with which it affirms the value of being, making, and remaking worlds. Intertitles stands at a place of critically-engaged compassion reflected in CAConrad’s contribution which wonders at the liberating potential of our ‘underestimated / parts’, the groundswell of nails that could ‘finally overtake the hammer’. The poet’s impassioned belief in the potential of everyone’s everyday creativity—‘the most necessary ingredient’ to making the changes our societies need—resonates with the political premise at the heart of Intertitles.
Beyond taking text as raw material, many of Intertitles’ contributors utilise a capacity to create near-physical sensory effects, grating phrases and fragments together to create shudders of all kinds in the body—pleasurable, curious or sickened. This can be felt in the molten present-tense scenes of Charlotte Prodger’s ‘Beamers’, in the corporeal tumble of Flo Ray’s ‘AR TICULATIONS’, in the cuts and slips of Fatema Abdoolcarim’s burning ‘Shh’. Language kisses, licks, and unpicks, its many tongues illuminating currents of thought and relations.
As Vahni Capildeo notes in their afterword, this book addresses the reader. Entering into a dance-like rhythm, opening up poetic relations, they say, ‘Iron, I pass over what is folded in the in-between. My surface is hot and maculate. My cord is frayed. Soft machine metamorphosis is a readerly writerly act.’ A generative cross-contamination happens when texts not only address you, but enter into your language and thought, altering shapes and limits.
In the all-pervading capitalism of our times—which the editors diagnose as ‘casually co-opt[ing] forms of refusal and counter-hegemonic modes of being,’ it feels as if we can only imagine alternative modes of being from the spaces between. Folds, where some hidden space forms at the touch of surfaces, become sites of openness. Gaps, wrinkles, edges, margins. There can be cries and songs and ripples outward from these margins—title cards that interject and rebel, rather than smoothing a narrative. Intertitles could be (Capildeo again) a ‘whisper network […] of the sounds and silences formally known as unimaginable.’ It is a gathering of calculated eruptions from the seams.