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ARMIN HUNDERTMARK: Notes on the poems of Boris Lurie (1999)

At the end of September 1999 I received a fax from Boris Lurie asking me to write a small introduction or article for his poetry book. Faxed him back: Will try to write something for your book.

Before that, I received many faxes from Boris. Among other things, I was to ask Günter Brus to make a drawing for his book of poems. A short time later Günter Brus came to Cologne, because the Du Mont Verlag wants to publish a book by Günter. Günter came to my gallery. Before that we had discussed an edition he wanted to do for me. I gave Günter the NO! art catalog of the Neue Gesellschaft für Bildende Kunst, Berlin. I still had a small etching plate in the gallery and an engraver. I gave both to Günter. He went to a corner bar. After the gallery closed, I was to join him. When I came into the pub, he was sitting at the bar with a Cologne artist. His things lay on a corner table. Günter had finished the etching plate there. We thought about a title and the form how we should publish the etching.

About ten years ago, Boris gave me some poems to read. He asked me to tell him what I thought of them. I told him that I am not a literary critic but an art publisher. In between, I received copies of new poems every now and then, so that I could gradually read my way into the poems. Boris continued to write them with great perseverance. In a sometimes "old German" language. When reading, you can feel his great knowledge and the fate he suffered. He makes messages from his personal experience that go far beyond. They admonish, shake up, are sometimes touching, naive and crass and do not leave one indifferent.

I got to know Boris as a visual artist. In 1974 he made multiples for my edition. In 1976 I published the magazine "AUSGABE". I asked him to write something for the magazine. Soon I received texts from him, which I also printed. They were texts about the NO! art group. Later Boris wrote to me and asked if I would like to publish a special issue of my "AUSGABE" about the NO!-art group. I agreed. Now Boris showered me with texts and photos of his work and that of many others. Later Dietmar Kirves made a book out of it. I published that in 1988.

So I have been engaged for a long time and a lot with the pictures and writings of Boris Lurie.

Source: Boris Lurie, Geschriebigtes — Gedichtigtes, Stuttgart 2003

ABOUT THE GALLERY AND EDITION HUNDERTMARK: Edition and Gallery Hundertmark (until 2002 Edition Hundertmark) is a German publishing house for artists' books and art objects. The edition was founded in 1970 by Armin Hundertmark (* 1948 in Berlin). The publishing house was initially based in Berlin. Works by Fluxus artists, the Vienna Actionists, and Concrete Poetry were published. Among the first artists to be edited were Joseph Beuys, Günter Brus, Robert Filliou, Ludwig Gosewitz, Milan Knížák, Otto Muehl, Hermann Nitsch, Arnulf Rainer, Tomas Schmit, Ben Vautier, and Emmett Williams. Tape cassettes, CDs and multiples of these and other artists have been released. Exhibitions of most of the artists were also shown in the affiliated gallery. Trademarks were the editions in art boxes, the cartons, which today already have considerable collector value. In 1976 Hundertmark founded the literary and art magazine "Ausgabe". more

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