Poetry – Jacob Wren

Dermot Seymour, Border Cross, huile sur toile, 220 x 163cm, 2003
Dermot Seymour, Border Cross, huile sur toile, 220 x 163cm, 2003


We are working on things. We are working on projects. Some of these projects will be seen by a few people and some by a few more. These few and few more are all, also, working on projects, only some of which we will see. In ten years most of these projects will still exist, in twenty years less, in fifty years I would guess, generously, less than half, and in one hundred years considerably less than that. In two hundred years we will be lucky if one or two of these projects made by us today, made by those who come to see our projects, or by those who go see their projects, are still being viewed or considered by anyone. And yet now there are hundreds if not thousands. Perhaps some will exist in an archive or library waiting to be rediscovered. Maybe it won’t be one or two, maybe ten or twenty, I have been accused of being too pessimistic in the past. Will the world two hundred years from now still be livable, recognizable, and why doesn’t this question matter more to how we proceed today? One truism might be: projects have no future; but any historical period in art has produced a majority of works that were left behind. Art is what survives, is a quote I once heard attributed to Duchamp, and he has certainly done so, survived, at least until now. Is there a point of no return, past which one’s survival is genuinely assured? Might we still forget about Rembrandt, about Kafka, about art?

Écrivain et metteur en scène né en 1971 à Jérusalem, Jacob Wren est l’auteur de Unrehearsed Beauty (Coach House Books, 1998), de Families Are Formed Through Copulation (Pedlar Press, 2007), et de Revenge Fantasies of the Politically Dispossessed (Pedlar Press, 2010). Ses deux premiers livres ont parus en français au Quartanier, dans une traduction de Christophe Bernard, qui traduira aussi Revenge Fantasies… Jacob Wren vit à Montréal, où il est directeur artistique de la compagnie de théâtre PME-ART. – Le Quartanier

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