in The fictions of Arthur Cravan
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Without a final death to recover, no single meaning emerges from a life of perpetually unstable power-relations and the relentless struggle for domination. This conclusion gives closing summation of the representation of the body of Cravan and the currency for the metaphor of Cravan, and Hans Richter’s ‘final nothingness’, and the appropriation of the poet-boxer by Breton for Surrealism in the years immediately following his disappearance. The moving, tactile and sensate body invites the bodily participation of the beholder; ‘it is in the present that we make memory, in order to make use of it in the future when the present will be past’ (Deleuze). The event of representation itself is brought into relief, specifically the excess of representation in the eruptions of ‘other’ meanings and in arguing critically for the supplement that art can reveal. Here is processed Cravan’s ‘posthumous’ life after 1918 and into the mid-1920s, entering the canon of late Dada, experimental film (Picabia’s Entr’acte) and subsequent Surrealism, and eventually finding continuity in the 1950s and 1960s in Guy Debord’s Situationist legacy and ongoing avant-garde circuitry.

The fictions of Arthur Cravan

Poetry, boxing and revolution


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