Side A is a dizzying montage of quirky shots of legendary Beat Generation writer William S. Burroughs and noted surrealist artist Brion Gysin in 1966, this nearly 20 minute avant-garde short features repeated articulations of such random things as “Hello,” “Where are we now?,” and “Look at that picture” instead of music or standard dialogue. The narrative is decidedly nonlinear and perplexing, with no discernible plot whatsoever as we see images of Gysin working on his paintings and calligraphic designs and Burroughs rummaging through draws, packing a suitcase, giving a young man a physical, making a call in a phone booth, and waiting on a platform for a subway train.
Side two is taken by The Place of Dead Roads, a western novel of the same name by William S. Burroughs, four androgynous cowboys inhabit a space not unlike the one in which the spectator finds themselves. A series of twitches, shudders, full body spasms, gestures both rapid and slow, pulsate through all four figures. A wildly comic and grotesque satire that moves across time and space through an ever-shifting world of clones and cowboys, The Place of Dead Roads continues William Burroughs’ exploration of society’s controlling forces – the State, the Church, women, literature, drugs – with a style that is utterly unique in twentieth-century literature.
Private edition, limited to 150 copies