Tuesday, August 28, 2012, 19.30
August 29 - September 9
Opening hours: Friday, Saturday, Sunday 15.00-18.00
Over (the) years, I’d developed a game plan or overall structure for the cycle. It would take the form of a novel being gradually dismembered to nothing. The first novel would construct the themes, archetypes, subjects, style, and atmosphere of the cycle. (…) Each succeeding novel’s form would reflect the damage caused by the violence, drug use, and emotional turmoil of the previous novel. (…) Parallel to this dismemberment in stages, the structure would be a mirrored structure where the first novel would seem to gradually move through a mirror and eventually, over the course of the cycle, become a backwards reflection of itself.
– Dennis Cooper
In collaboration with the Fales Library & Special Collections of the New York University and the Kunstverein Amsterdam, Elaine MGK exhibits Dennis Cooper’s archive of the George Miles Cycle, comprised of manuscripts, journals, posters, correspondence, scrapbooks and videocassettes. In addition, works by Vincent Fecteau are shown which are part of the archive.
Dennis Cooper was 15 when he met George Miles, the 12-year old brother of a friend. They immediately became close and continued their affection and friendship after George developed a severe bipolar disorder in his early teens, causing him to go through phases of serious depressions, manic episodes, suicide attempts and occasional periods of institutionalization.
In 1987 (1953, Pasadena, USA), Cooper moved to Amsterdam where he finished writing the first novel of the Cycle entitled Closer. Closer was awarded with the first Ferro-Gumley Award for gay literature and has since been translated into seventeen languages. In the early 80s, after they had been out of touch for over two years, Cooper began to write a cycle of novels in tribute to George, which consist of Closer (1989), Frisk(1991), Try (1994), Guide (1997) and Period (2000). The complex structure of the cycle is layered and constructed out of geometrical forms.
In 1997, after publishing the fourth novel in the cycle, he found out that George had committed suicide ten years earlier. The fifth novel, Period, written with the awareness that George was no longer alive, is inspired by and dedicated to Vincent Fecteau.
Dennis Cooper Papers was conceived by Krist Gruijthuijsen in cooperation with Marvin Taylor, director of the Fales Library & Special Collections of the New York University.