A story about a rabbit by Kurt SchwittersPosted: May 3, 2014
This is the final book of “A story about a rabbit” by Kurt Schwitters. During the development of the book and based on progress feedback I’ve received, I feel that this project is more suitable for my Constellation – defamiliarization theory practice. The design is influenced by Laura Hyde illustration. Even though I won’t be submitting this piece as one of Individual – Field project work, I’m glad that I found this book as inspiration and narrative practice as well as a material for my Constellation essay.
During his life, Kurt Schwitters had produced many publications, paintings, collage/assemblage art works which influenced many great artists such as Jasper Johns and Robert Rauschenberg. This book was one of his publication.
Once upon a time there was a brown rabbit that had long hair and long ears and a short tail, and it hopped around the corner even when there wasn’t a corner to hop around. Actually it wasn’t brown, but rosy, and its hair was actually short, and its tail was curly. And actually it didn’t hop at all but grunted and dug in the mud. Then it looked muddy and no longer rosy, but rather dark grey red. And if it had small piglets, they suckled on the rabbit. However, actually it wasn’t grey red, rather grey white, and it had many feathers and a pair of beautiful wings, but it couldn’t fly. On its legs it had flippers and it swam proudly on the pond in the park, and people who walked by threw it bread crumbs. That is, actually it swam underwater, had golden scales and a tail with two points. That is actually it didn’t have much of a tail; rather, it had two ears and was very fat and preferred to spend a good deal of time in the Nile River. Its mouth had a magnificent row of teeth. That is, actually it was driven by steam, had a propeller behind it and two anchors in the front. In the middle there was a chimney, and on the bridge there was a captain who belonged to a Hamburg shipping line. That is, actually he was very small, liked to jump as far as he could, and sought protection underneath the clothes of women, and the women scratched themselves. So this was the rabbit, and this was the story about the rabbit. That is, actually it wasn’t a story at all, but a transformation that even made the rabbit grow up.
Well then, it was a story and it was indeed also about a rabbit.
From Kurt Schwitters: Lucky Hans and other Merz fairy tales – translated by Jack Zipes. 2009