Iliazda at the Birthday Party
Ilya Zdanevich – Iliazd
Edited by Sezgin Boynik


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The second volume of the “bie bao series” presents a eulogy entitled “Iliazda at the Birthday Party”, a pseudo-autobiographical lecture delivered by Ilya Zdanevich in Paris in 1922. It reports on Zdanevich’s artistic and political adventures up until then. Along with an autobiography full of self-admiration, in this lecture Zdanevich gives an interpretation of his zaum dramas inspired by Freudianism, and humorously describes a colourful image of the Russian microcosm in Montparnasse.

Essay / Literature, Theory / History / Criticism
Additionally, this second volume also includes Iliazd’s letter to Ardengo Soffici from 1964, where one can read, in the most unambiguous terms, about Zdanevich’s positions against war, imperialism, and all forms of nationalism. Subtitled 50 Years of Russian Futurism, the letter to Soffici presents us with an altogether new Zdanevich – a ‘fellow traveller’ in both leftist and avant-garde circles. As well as the extended introduction and extensive annotations, the texts are further contextualised with Johanna Drucker’s visual presentation of the birth of the Iliazd cult.

Translated by by Pavels Smišlajevs and Michel Chevalier.

The “bie bao series” is dedicated to militant zaum investigations of Ilya Zdanevich, known as Iliazd (1894-1975). Zdanevich was a poet, designer, typographer, theoretician, and publisher who developed a new philosophy and methodology from zaum (trans-sense) experiments.

The series will include eight publications, covering many layers of Zdanevich’s rich theoretical and artistic output. Each volume will consist of a bio-bibliographical introduction, a commentary, a translation with annotations, and an artistic intervention.

The “bie bao series” is designed by Bardhi Haliti.
96 pages
Paperback, 11x17 cm
Rab-Rab Press, ISBN 9789526938998