Proposal for an Exhibition of the Fictions of Richard Kostelanetz

who has for more than thirty years worked in a variety of formats unusual for fiction, including newsprint books, ladderbooks, nonsequential cards, mostly blank books, audio, video and film, with a variety of unusual fictional materials, including single-sentence stories, fictions with only one or two words to a paragraph, stories composed exclusively of numbers and of line-drawings, fictions with only three words and a period to a page. On the walls will be mounted several hundred cards of single-sentence Epiphanies, a frieze of Openings & Closings, the large-format newsprint stories ("Milestones in a Life", certain numerical fictions), the ladderbooks (Modulations & Extrapolate) and the original drawings/versions of some of the abstract stories. Rare and fragile fictions (Tabula Rasa, Inexistences, Obliterate) will be under glass, their pages open to reveal their contents. More common books will be on a table, available for reading on the premises: Short Fictions, In the Beginning, Numbers: Poems & Stories, One Night Stood (in both editions), Constructs, Constructs Two, More Short Fictions, Come Here, Foreshortenings, the German edition of Epiphanies, Openings & Closings, And So Forth, Exhasutive Parallel Intervals, Reincarnations, Minimal Fictions, 3-Element Stories. The audiotapes of fiction (Experimental Prose, Monotapes, Openings & Closings, Foreshortenings, Epiphanies, Seductions, Conversations, Dialogues, Ululation) should be available from the attendant, to be played in a stereo cassette player (with earphones) whenever a spectator wants to hear one. The same procedure should govern the exhibition of videotapes (Openings & Closings, Three Prose Pieces, Epiphanies) which can include videocopies of both theatrical performances of the last text and three films: Constructivist Fictions, Openings & Closings and the four-hour Epiphanies. In a separate place, for reference, could be the artist's three anthologies of fiction--Twelve from the Sixties (1967), Future's Fictions (1971), Breakthrough Fictioneers (1973)—and his collection of critical essays, The Old Fictions and the New (1987), in addition to the latest version of his “New Retrospective on Fiction Writing.” The exhibition should include a catalog itemizing the works and reproducing the entries in Contemporary Novelists (St. James), Postmodern Fiction (Greenwood), The Reader’s Guide to 20th Century Writers (Oxford), Merriam-Webster’s Biographical Dictionary of American Writers, and other encyclopedias. Interested sponsors are advised to contact the artist.