'Legend of the Necessary Dreamer' (Vanguard Editions, 2017)
Legend of the Necessary Dreamer is:
- a novella
- a prose essay
- an excavation of the historic Palácio Pombal
- a work of impatience and death.
'A modest epic written in real-time, Maria Fusco’s Legend of the Necessary Dreamer records some weeks in June 2013 when her narrator went every day to Lisbon’s Palácio Pombal in order to write about it. But 'it', of course, isn’t only the building, but the wraparound sensual act of perceiving. As she writes, I am trying to turn myself into a recording device…. Fusco’s book brilliantly examines what it means not just to look, but to think, feel and remember. Legend expands the bounds of discursion. It’s a new classic of female philosophical fiction.'
Chris Kraus, author of I Love Dick
‘Legend of the Necessary Dreamer is an excellent work of spatial imagination. Fusco writes one-to-one scale between body and building. Producing space through her critical habitation of the extreme close-up, decelerating engagement, recycling history into atmospherics. A new taxonomy of site-based address.'
Dr. Eyal Weizman, Professor of Spatial & Visual Cultures, Goldsmiths College, University of London
'Legend of the Necessary Dreamer is an extraordinary book. Combining fact and fiction, traversing scales of distance and intimacy, shifting registers to oscillate between creative and critical modes of engagement, Fusco offers an embodied, performative and imaginative relation to the Pombal Palácio in Lisbon. Here, and following along each tightly-wrought sentence, we are encouraged to empathise with objects and materials, experience the everyday ‘made strange’, and follow lines of thought into the open. This is excellent writing. This is writing for our time.'
Dr. Kristen Kreider, author of Poetics & Place: The Architecture of Sign, Subjects and Site
'"Where are the places I may more easily adapt to my own scale?" Maria Fusco, ghost phenomenologist, fuses dust and memory in her account of a residency at an ancient palácio in Lisbon. What's stucco; what's skin? And what are the kinds of work we can do on either? An ecstatic, lyrical investigation into the layers of the personal, historical and mythic past.’ Joanna Walsh, author of Hotel
Maria Fusco is an award winning Belfast-born writer working across fiction, criticism and theory. Her work is translated into ten languages. Recent works include: Master Rock, an experimental radio play performed and recorded inside a granite mountain on the west coast of Scotland, commissioned by Artangel and BBC Radio 4, and the solo-authored books With A Bao A Qu Reading When Attitudes Become Form, 2013 (Los Angeles/Vancouver: New Documents, 2013), Gonda, 2012 and The Mechanical Copula, 2011 (both published Berlin/New York: Sternberg Press). She is currently a Professor at Northumbria University, previously a Reader at the University of Edinburgh and Director of Art Writing at Goldsmiths.
You can read an excerpt here.
You can read a longer review here.
You can read an interview with Maria here.
pp.81 / £8 incl. p&p (please add £4 for Europe / £6 for the rest of the world)
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