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“Proposals for Story Five”
February 16th to March 2nd 2012
Private view 6.00-8.00pm Wednesday 15th February
WPP Project Space
“.... I was in Dublin in November and Fiona told me that before I left I should go to The Winding Stair bookshop. So I did, and I bought a book of interviews with Wallace Stegner, in which he says of Tillie Olsen (and I’m paraphrasing here)... she only wrote five short stories in her whole life, but those five stories carried her farther than a whole string of camels...” With no colleagues to test her ideas against, Stegner maintained, Olsen studied in the public library, becoming a “bug house philosopher.”
The publication and exhibition Proposals for Story Five inhabits these ideas, considering them alongside Olsen’s own study Silences, which chronicled the “unnatural” silences that have afflicted writers. The result is a bug house publishing within the walls of the university, fruits of a search for story five amongst Roland Barthes, Billy and Lucky, the Last Great British Trifle Eaters, the bug house poet Richard Griffin, Eugène Delacroix, and a thick mist covering Mare Street in East London.