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It’s not me who’s seeing

Blake Morrison: Jon Fosse’s Methods, 5 January 2023

by Jon Fosse, translated by Damion Searls.
Fitzcarraldo, 825 pp., £16.99, November, 978 1 80427 006 6
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Aliss at the Fire 
by Jon Fosse, translated by Damion Searls.
Fitzcarraldo, 74 pp., £10.99, November, 978 1 80427 004 2
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... two written forms (Bokmål is the other), most common in western Norway. The fidelity of Damion Searls’s translation is impossible for an outsider to judge but it reads very fluently; it seems Searls is to Fosse what Anthea Bell was to W.G. Sebald, the best possible intermediary. There’s such carry in the ...

Back to Their Desks

Benjamin Moser: Nescio, 23 May 2013

Amsterdam Stories 
by Nescio, translated by Damion Searls.
NYRB, 161 pp., £7.99, May 2012, 978 1 59017 492 0
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... reading them is anything but gloomy. And credit for this belongs nearly as much to the translator, Damion Searls, as to Nescio himself. Partly this has to do with a historical peculiarity of the Dutch language. Nescio, according to Eyckens, bore ‘the heavy influence of his Dutch teacher, Mr R.A. Kollewijn, founder of simplified spelling’. The ...

Bear, Bat, or Tiny King?

Deborah Friedell: The Rorschach Test, 2 November 2017

The Inkblots 
by Damion Searls.
Simon and Schuster, 406 pp., £20, February 2017, 978 1 4711 3041 0
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... anger or clinginess or depression, was by training to be Rorschachian analysts themselves. Damion Searls, whose new book offers the first history of ‘probably the ten most interpreted and analysed paintings of the 20th century’, doesn’t argue, as others have, that the Rorschach is ‘the most powerful psychometric instrument ever ...

My wife brandishes circle and line

Anne Wagner: Sophie Taeuber-Arp, 6 December 2018

Sophie Taeuber-Arp and the Avant Garde: A Biography 
by Roswitha Mair, translated by Damion Searls.
Chicago, 222 pp., £41.50, September 2018, 978 0 226 31121 0
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... The Swiss artist​ Sophie Taeuber grew up without a father. Carl Emil Taeuber, a pharmacist, succumbed to tuberculosis in 1891, two years after her birth. Her mother, another Sophie, never remarried. Instead she moved back to Trogen, her birthplace, and designed a new house for her young family; supervising its construction, planting and tending its garden, and looking after a series of paying guests ...

I and My Wife

Bee Wilson: Eva Braun, 5 January 2012

Eva Braun: Life with Hitler 
by Heike Görtemaker, translated by Damion Searls.
Allen Lane, 324 pp., £25, October 2011, 978 1 84614 489 9
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... Eva Braun kept photograph albums. Whether lounging on the terrace at the Berghof or tagging along on a state visit to Italy, she was always snapping away. Her first and only proper job was selling rolls of film at Photohaus Hoffmann in Munich, and an interest in photography stayed with her during the 14 years of her relationship with Hitler. At the Führer’s various residences, she took colour home movies using an up to the minute 16mm Agfa-Movex camera ...

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