EQUILIBRIUM by Tonino Guerra
190mm x 120mm, 152 pages, black and white printing, perfect bound, 2020
“A diary, a tragedy, PTSD, madness. A trip worthy of Hunter S. Thompson or Charlie Kaufman, obviously filmic and surreal but succinct and clear like fresh water.”
Samantha Morton Description –
“I had just gotten away from it all, by which I mean all those ordinary, boring things like skyscrapers, cigar-smoking industrialists, linoleum, plastics, television, westerns and marihuana. I had either seen or heard about them. Whether they are good or bad is beside the point...”
A nameless graphic designer is haunted by the concentration camp in which he was once interned. Obsessed with his past, as well as Italy's present ‘economic miracle’, he retreats to a rural villa where he decorates the rooms with "arrows, signs, advertisements"; invents a new, purposefully incomprehensible typeface; and attempts to devise a marketing campaign for stones. Upon finally returning to Milan life becomes even more unbalanced. He loses his job and acquires a mistress whom he soon confuses both with his wife and the memory of the young, Czech woman he abandoned at the end of the war.
Known primarily as a screenwriter for Michelangelo Antonioni, Federico Fellini and Andrei Tarkovsky among many others, Tonino Guerra also wrote poetry and fiction. Reissued to mark the centenary of his birth, and with a new introduction by acclaimed cultural critic Michael Bracewell, Equilibrium remains a relevant, powerful, and intensely visual account of a broken but (post-)modern man.
Tonino Guerra was born one hundred years ago in Santarcangelo di Romagna, Italy. The son of illiterate peasants, he first started writing poetry while interned in a German prison camp with other anti-fascist protesters. After the war he moved to Rome where he met the director Elio Petri. He then went onto produce over one hundred film scripts, receiving Oscar nominations for Carlo Pointi's Casanova 70, and Michelangelo Antoninoi's Blow-Up. In 1975 he won the Academy Award for Fellini's Amarcord.
Eric Mosbacher was an English journalist and translator. During World War II he worked as an interpreter interrogating Italian prisoners of war before joining the Political Warfare Executive, where he helped to create an anti-Fascist German-language newspaper.
Michael Bracewell is the author of several works of fiction and non-fiction, including the novella Perfect Tense (1999) and England Is Mine (1997). His writing has also appeared in The Faber Book of Pop and The Penguin Book of Twentieth Century Fashion Writing. Recent publications include The Rise of David Bowie 1971-1972 (with Mick Rock and Barney Hoskyns) and Joy Division (with Glenn Brown and Lavinia Greenlaw). He was co-curator of The Secret Public (Kunstverein Munich/ICA, London (2006)) and The Dark Monarch: British Modernism and the Occult at Tate St Ives (2009). His selected writings on visual art, The Space Between were published by Ridinghouse, London in 2011.