RCA, Gorvey Lecture Theatre, 30 April 2019
‘The Psychotic Document’
What if a document functioned not as a solid anchor serving to fix a reality but, on the contrary, as a lure, a mirage, vortex into an abyssal space in which reality itself unravels? Novelist Tom McCarthy considers the function of the photographic document in Julio Cortazar’s 1959 story ‘The Devil’s Drool’ and Michelangelo Antonioni’s celebrated adaptation of it in his 1966 film ‘Blow-Up’. Olivier Richon responds.Tom McCarthy (Stirling, 1969) is a novelist whose work has been translated into more than twenty languages. His first novel, Remainder, won the 2008 Believer Book Award and was recently adapted for the cinema. His third, C, was a 2010 Booker Prize finalist, as was his fourth, Satin Island, in 2015. McCarthy is also author of the study Tintin and the Secret of Literature, and of the essay collection Typewriters, Bombs, Jellyfish. He contributes regularly to publications such as The New York Times, The London Review of Books, Harper’s and Artforum. In 2013 he was awarded the inaugural Windham Campbell Prize for Fiction by Yale University. He is currently a Fellow of the DAAD Artists-in-Berlin Programme.