david richter

2

UNSOOTHING TIME

Painting: Érik Desmazières, Le vent souffle où il veut (The Open Door, detail, 1989)

Photograph: David Alan Harvey, Brooklyn, NY. USA. 2016

The centrifugal force of time has scattered our Vienna chairs and the Dutch plates with the little blue flowers. There is nothing left. Thirty years went by like a fire burning slowly. For thirty years a cold white flame was licking the back of the mirrors, labelled by the bailiff. But how can I be parted from you, beloved Egypt of things, how can I forget the strong smell of eternity coming from the dining-room, the bedroom, the study? How can I correct my mistake?

Ossip Emilyevich Mandelstam, The Egyptian Stamp (translated by Colouringreflections)

Music: Dmitri Dmitriyevich Shostakovich, Four Preludes and Fugues, no 22, 21, 19, 20 (Suggested interpretation: Svyatoslav Teofilovich Richter)