Ball and Hammer: Hugo Ball's Tenderenda the Fantast

by: Hugo Ball

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Ball and Hammer: Hugo Ball's Tenderenda the Fantast, illustrated and translated by Jonathan Hammer / ISBN: 9780300083736 / 144-page hardcover from Yale Press / Out-of-print, discounted copies with only light shelfwear

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"Jonathan Hammer brings passion and obsession, a sharply tuned intellect, and fresh and vivid focus to his translation of Ball's text and to a parallel world of images. The hopes and despairs of thought and art are liberated." -Gary Garrels, The Museum of Modern Art, New York

In this unconventional book, Jonathan Hammer offers a new translation of Hugo Ball's visionary novella Tenderenda the Fantast, along with his own unique Tenderenda-inspired images. The resulting "dialogue" between Ball, the founder of Zurich Dada, and Hammer, a contemporary artist, casts new light on Dadaism and its postmodern legacies.

In Tenderenda, composed between 1914 and 1920, Ball recounts a hallucinatory tale of his own Dada enchantment and disenchantments. Jeffrey T. Schnapp introduces the book, elaborating the cultural and historical context of Ball's work and situating Hammer's work in relation to Dada. In a concluding essay, Hammer probes various aspects of Ball's asceticism, spirituality, and sexuality to arrive at a revisionist interpretation of Zurich Dada and the origins of modernism as well as postmodern art-making.