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Twisted Spoon Press

PO Box 21 - Preslova 12, 150 00 Prague 5, Czech Republic

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"I Built a Box"
"The Landscape of
Marquis de Sade"


also by the author:
Edition 69


by Jindřich Štyrský

translated from the Czech by Jed Slast

introduction by Karel Teige

Published posthumously in 1970 as Dreams, Štyrský’s
dream journal spanning the interwar years comprises prose, sketches, collages, and paintings. The present volume includes the complete series of texts and full-color and halftone images based on Štyrský's layout for its publication in the 1940s, his sole volume of poetry (also published posthumously), as well as a selection of his most important essays, articles, manifestos, and assorted other texts. This edition presents in English for the first time the broad range
of Štyrský's contribution to the interwar avant-garde and Surrealism.


This new translation will bring Anglophone readers into the world of Czech surrealism from which Štyrský comes, but it will also remove him from that context, and put him into conversation with a wider world of 20th -century authors who also undertook to use dream narratives to structure their own psychologically probing writings. Reading this book, one understands Štyrský’s links to Proust, as much as to his cohort of Czech surrealists, such as Toyen or Vítězslav Nezval. This simultaneous expansion of and alienation from Štyrský’s literary context is one of the exciting results of translating for the first time an author whose work is both historically specific and thematically universal.

— Sean Lambert, Reading in Translation

Dreamverse isn’t so much the atlas of Štyrský’s inner world as a set of picture postcards — often scandalous, just as often intoxicating — sent from this land of imagination. [...] The imaginative world of childhood is also the birthplace of sexuality, and it is this world which Štyrský so deftly explores in Dreamverse.

— Paul McRandle, Rain Taxi

Dreamverse is part artwork, part diary, part poetic and part historical artefact, a work that pervades your own subconscious and plants seeds of nightmares, whilst also giving historical context to the art movements that Jindřich Štyrský was associated with ...

Messenger's Booker

Publishing can so often seem predictable and risk averse, but there are always exceptions. Dreamverse for me holds a place of prominence on that list.

Good Reading Copy

Štyrský’s dreamverse is a writhing collage of contradictions. Hope and despair, sex and death, the beautiful and the lurid are all collapsed into surrealist expression. [...] Dreamverse has been an unexpected and strange joy, a dark and often perverse collection that plants its own dreamseeds in its reader.


Only the poetical interpretation of the dream is objective and scientific.

— D. Trost

It would be futile to look for any concessions to what’s in vogue or to outside pressures in Štyrský’s work. The occupation and war have not diverted him from his path, which is at one with the path of revolution.

— Benjamin Péret

In his short life Štyrský engaged in an unusual amount of experimentation. In the process, he created a surreal personal universe that is still being analyzed and deciphered, leaving a legacy of "the marvelous in the everyday life" that inspired his fellow countrymen and many other avant-garde artists all over the world, and continues to do so today.

— Valery Oisteanu, The Brooklyn Rail

Each one of Jindřich Štyrský's paintings is a provocation that it be on a par with poetry. Can there be any doubt that his art is poetry through and through, a poetry of a very high order?

— František Halas

One advances only by means of abstraction, but one finds repose only in the image.

— Henri Michaux


ISBN 9788086264387
237 pp., 17 x 20 cm
smyth-sewn softcover with flaps
88 halftone and 38 full-color illus.
art : literature : surrealism

release dates:
UK: October 17, 2018
US: December 3, 2018

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