Published April 2019 by Les presses du réel
136 pages (b/w ill.) 12,2 x 19 cm
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Two texts by Zoe Beloff, Emotions go to Work and The Coney Island Amateur Psychoanalytic Society translated into French. Edited by Paul Sztulman and Dork Zabunyan. Preface by Paul Sztulman. Postface by Dork Zabunyan.
Published September 1, 2018 by the Charles Nypels Lab, Van Eyck Maastricht
Hand printed 5 color Risograph book (435 x 300 mm) 20 pages
A signed limited edition of 100
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(proceeds go to the charity First Friends of New Jersey and New York that assists immigrants and aslyum seekers in detention)
Between Worlds is a documentary picture story that follows the journey of an asylum seeker in the United States. His story is both unique and representative of the millions uprooted by conflict throughout the world who are attempting to start a new life in America. Since filming his journey and incarceration in an immigration detention center was impossible, I decided to draw his experiences as he described them to me.
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Published September 1, 2018 by Minor Compositions, London/ New York/ Port Watson
Hand printed 5 color Risograph book (165 x 235 mm) with two pullout pages, 65 pages
A limited edition of 200 copies
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Emotions go to work is an investigation into how technology is used to turn our feelings into valuable assets. One might call it the transformation of emotion into capital.
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A World Redrawn is an exploration by the artist Zoe Beloff of Sergei Eisenstein and Bertolt Brecht’s experiences in Hollywood in the 1930s and ‘40s, what their time in Hollywood meant to them then and what it might mean to us now. Beloff focuses on two unrealized films written during this time: “Glass House” by Eisenstein and “A Model Family” by Brecht. The book reproduces many important and little-known documents from the period, including a large selection of previously unpublished drawings by Eisenstein discovered by Beloff in the Russian State Archive of Literature and Art in Moscow and facsimile reproductions of the writings of Eisenstein and Brecht as they contemplate the politics and culture of Hollywood. Beloff created three films in connection with this project and the book includes stills and screenplays for these projects and links so that the films can be watched online. Two scholarly essays have been commissioned for this project: an essay by Hannah Frank on the affinities of American and Soviet animation during this period and a meditation on the role of laughter in the work of Bertolt Brecht by the Walter Benjamin scholar Esther Leslie.
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Published 2012 by Site Gallery
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Created to accompany an exhibition of the same name, this illustrated essay investigates motion studies and the origins of cinema in a drive to organize and optimize the body of the worker. It imagines what radical resistance to these pressures might look like; asking what happens when objects become too lively and cartoon characters decide to animate themselves. It explains the revolutionary potential of the pratfall.
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This hand-drawn prototype for a comic book, appears to have been created by Albert Grass, founder of the Coney Island Amateur Psychoanalytic Society in the 1930’s. It seems possible that he originally intended "The Dreamer" as a comic book hero in the mold of "The Spirit", or even "Superman" with extraordinary powers but this conception quickly changed. By episode three "The Dreamer" looses his ability to fly, landing on the ground with a loud "ouch!". He remains earthbound and the work becomes a more serious investigation into his own psychic life.
Many of Albert Grass’ anxieties speak directly to us today. He suffered the aftereffects of a brutal war. He worried about his neighbors being evicted. He felt the guilt of an artist who feels he should be more deeply engaged in a struggle for social justice. Previously unpublished, this facsimile edition makes available for the first time what appears to be an early attempt to use the language of the comic book to graphically manifest the unconscious.
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On the afternoon of August 28th 1909 Sigmund Freud visited Coney Island’s famous Dreamland amusement park. A hundred years later this, lively and imaginative book examines his legacy in Coney Island. It begins with Norman Klein’s reconstruction of his actual visit. However Freud’s real impact appears to have come later with the founding of the Coney Island Amateur Psychoanalytic Society. Zoe Beloff conjures up the world of this unique Society, whose forward-thinking attitude flourished from1926 through the early 1970s. The Society’s members, most of them working people from a wide variety of cultural backgrounds, wished to participate in one of the great intellectual movements of the 20th century. She explores their activities that included recreating their dreams on film and discusses the role of the society’s visionary founder Albert Grass who attempted to rebuild Dreamland according to Freud’s theory of dream formation.
Aaron Beebe, director of the Coney Island Museum, writes how his institution is reviving the idea of the living museum, that dates back to the early 19th century where art, science, spectacle and speculation coexist under one roof. Amy Herzog’s essay, “Primal Scenes: Sigmund Freud, Coney Island, and the Staging of Domestic Trauma” discusses how Freud’s theories can give us a deeper understanding of public’s fascination with some of Coney Islands unique attractions that include Liliputia, Baby Incubators and the World In Wax Musée.
The book is lavishly illustrated with 75 full color pictures of never before seen photographs, drawings and documents that shed new light on Coney Island’s mythic history.
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Published 2008 by Christine Burgin
114 pages with black and white illustrations and DVD
Available from Amazon
The book is a collection of essays and images that inspired Zoe's video installation, “The Somnambulists” 2008. Comprised of five miniature wooden theaters into which moving images are projected, her work centers on the idea of "staging the unconscious”. Each theater presents a hysterical drama. These include “History of a Fixed Idea” and “A Modern Case of Possession” in which two patients of the famous French psycho-pathologist Pierre Janet, express their delusions in song. Other theaters present the ghostly specters of actual hysterics filmed by doctors a hundred years ago.
The texts and images included in the book illuminate the complex interweaving of ideas from psychology, writing, performance, art, and moving-image technology at the end of the 19th century. It begins with an introduction to the "Players," brief biographies of the scholars, artists, and performers who appear in this volume. The texts include Pierre Janet’s case study of the writer Raymond Roussel, the Surrealists celebration of hysteria as the greatest poetical invention of the 19th century in “The Fiftieth Anniversary of Hysteria” and the pioneering psychic researcher Frederic W.H. Myers’ commentary on Janet’s contribution to the discovery of the unconscious.Also included are rarely seen photographs by Albert von Schrenck Notzing of artistic production under the influence of hypnosis including images of the celebrated dream dancer Magdelaine G.
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