Birth of a Revolutionary Movement in Yugoslavia
Added by Unknown 1685 on Mar 6th, 2021
Type of Work
5 × 8 in
"Fredy Perlman’s exuberant experimentation with color printing is evident in the first printing of Birth of a Revolutionary Movement in Yugoslavia. He wrote the text in May of 1969 on Crikvenica, an island in the Adriatic, while traveling with Lorraine Perlman around Europe. The Perlmans lived in Belgrade from 1963 to 1966. Their friend from New York, John Ricklefs, also moved there, learned the language, and was making a living doing odd jobs. For three years, the Perlmans immersed themselves in daily life: Lorraine played violin with the orchestra of the Belgrade opera and taught music part-time at the American school, while Fredy earned a PhD in economics at Belgrade University. According to Lorraine, the program was largely dominated by American-style economic theories, but Fredy’s advisor, Miloš Samardžija, was a Marxist who brought him to Kosovo and Albania to study their economic plans. Samardžija later taught at Western Michigan University and helped Fredy get a teaching position there.The Perlmans returned in 1968 and met with friends, former fellow students, and dissident faculty from the University of Belgrade who had participated in the June 1968 protests and student uprising there.14 Like workers and students in capitalist countries, Yugoslavian students demon-strated in solidarity with the Vietnamese and against U.S. militarism and imperialism.15 Fredy Perlman used the information he gathered from these conversations to write a chronological synopsis of the events. The text is set in full-justified Times New Roman. It was likely typeset at the offices of Fifth Estate. Lorraine Perlman notes in Having Little, Being Much that a friend in Belgrade gave Fredy his collection of the Yugoslavian newspapers Student and Susret. Fredy reproduces images and cut-outs from these newspapers throughout Birth of a Revolutionary Movement, but he manipulates the colors so that they function more as textures and abstract imagery. The words student i proleterijatare recognizable here and there. On page 23 and on the back cover a collage is made from the word susret (meeting), written in Cyrillic.The cover calls attention to color printing with a series of small colored circles below the title, and large overlapping circles above the title. In the large circles, a halftone pattern is visible. On the lower half of the front cover, a photograph of people walking on a street is separated into yellow magenta, and cyan. The registration is imperfect and the blue bleeds out around the edges of their shadows.Pages 12 and 17, as well as the centerfold, have full page color collages. On page 12, Perlman has cut up an image of students sitting in the window of a building into strips within triangle shapes that come together at the center. Each strip is a different color, and Perlman seems to be experimenting intentionally with color combinations—blue and yellow to make green, magenta and blue to make purple. The registration is quite rough, and the strips of color interact with each other in interest-ing ways.The centerfold reproduces a grid of mostly illegible text cut out from newspaper articles, a low-resolution photograph of a crowd, and portraits of Vladimir Lenin in different colors. The Lenin portrait series in particular may be an unconscious (or conscious) nod to Andy Warhol’s multi-colored portrait screen prints. Perlman applies this treatment on other pages to portrait series of Karl Marx and Tito, the president of Yugoslavia. For the second printing, Fredy Perlman changed the title to Revolt in Socialist Yugoslavia: June, 1968. He used the same basic text layout from the first printing but pastes it up differently so that images can be separated from text. He uses the same collages as in the first printing but reduces them in size. The color registration is handled more expertly. The cover of the second printing is an enlarged map of Yugoslavia." The Detroit Printing Co-op by Danielle Aubert.