Introducing Surreal Documents

Valter’s Surreal Documents is an excellent blog on subversive surrealism as professed by Georges Bataille and the Acéphale group. Recent subjects have included Alice Coltrane, Coffin Joe, books acquired and Nico. The blog can now be accessed from my blogroll.

I quote from the Acéphale post:

… the Jean Rollin who participated in this issue of “La Revue Acéphale” is of course not Jean Rollin, who was born in 1938 and couldn’t possibly have contributed any articles to this “La Revue Acéphale” (I just corrected the error in Wikipedia).

In fact, it was the filmmaker’s father who contributed to the publication. The father was also called Jean Rollin. Jean Rollin’s mother, Denise Rollin-Le Gentil, had an (extramarital) relationship with Georges Bataille from october 1939 to the end of 1943.

Tohill and Tombs’ “Immoral Tales. Sex & Horror Cinema In Europe 1956-1984” suggest that years later Jean Rollin (the filmmaker, that is), would remember the bedtime stories that Bataille told him, about ‘Monsieur le Curé’, a wolf dressed in the robes of a priest.

How I would like to have heard those stories!

More on Denise Rollin-Le Gentil:

On 2 October 1939, [Georges Bataille] meets Denise Rollin-Le Gentil, who is 32 and married with a young son, Jean. Surya writes, ‘She was beautiful, a beauty that would be described as melancholy if not taciturn. She spoke little or, for long periods not at all’. She joins him at his flat in October; thereafter, Bataille will spend time in her flat at 3 rue de Lille.

[In 1945, Maurice] Blanchot commences an apparently largely epistolatory affair with Denise Rollin, which will continue until her death in 1978.–Spurious and more at Google books.

From Surreal Documents’ first post which features a photograph by Boiffard and Valter’s manifesto:

This blog has been inspired by my visit to the exhibition “Undercover Surrealism” at the Hayward Gallery in London. The blog is intended to contain doctrines, fine arts, ethnography, variety. Expect dusty things, ethnographies of one-man-Cthulhu Cults, confused concepts, black and blackened musics, untruths.

Checking Valter’s blogroll (show me your blogroll and I will tell you who you are) you will find Jim Woodring, Monster Brains, the Wooster Collective, Esotika Erotica Psychotica, Giallo Fever, Groovy Age Of Horror, Mutant Sounds, Video Watchblog and the recent newcomer Ombres Blanches.

To conclude, some Coffin Joe:


3 thoughts on “Introducing Surreal Documents

  1. Valter

    Thanks a million Jan! Valter

    The pleasure is all mine, Valter.

    Ik had een vermoeden dat je Nederlandstalig was nadat ik je Wikipedia-edits had gezien. Heb ik het juist?

  2. David Haw

    I’ve been fortunate to have seen many of the Coffin Joe films lately on my satellite television service. But I’ve got to tell you that if that were not the case , I’d probably never have the chance to see them (except through your site) as they certainly aren’t available at the local video store here in small town Ontario. Which brings me to my other point. I think Jahsonic is wonderful. It exposes people (like me) to a wide range of issues and information sources of interest that wouldn’t otherwise be available easily. Thank you for doing this.

    Dear David,

    Thanks for the compliment. Glad you like my work.


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