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The first Reading of Mallarmé's The Book

  • Mimosa House 12 Princes Street London, England, W1B 2LL United Kingdom (map)

Mimosa House invites you to The first Reading of Stephane Mallarmé’s Le Livre. 


Stephane Mallarmé (1842-1898) spent over thirty years of his latter life creating a work in which all the existing relationships between everything would be enacted in the form of producing a book. The Book (Le Livre) is a collection of notes and diagrams that read like poetic algorithms that Mallarmé wrote and stored in a lacquered multi-drawer piece of furniture and never published. A Gesamtkunstwerk or a total work of art, The Book merges different forms of production and their multiple potential meanings together into a contradictory system of double, triple and analogical equations.  

Back in 2016 a group of artists took part in the year-long working group ‘Mallarmé for the 21st Century’, guided by Tom McCarthy.  It was decided then that they would come together to interpret and enact The Book according to Mallarmé’s notes.

The first Reading stages a séance where four operators participate in a life-size board game. In the Reading, the text is substituted with an image, and the book with a video. The séance thus functions as an arena in which the constellations of symbols are being unraveled to catalyse the generating of the physical objects and conversations.

The séance will begin with an introduction of the book to the audience members or, using Mallarmé’s terminology, assistants – active viewers and contributors to the Reading. This will be followed by the performance, which is divided in three parts with intervals in between. The intervals will provide the space for discussion of Mallarmé’s work in the context of 21st Century, led by the members of the working group and with the viewers’ participation.

This event is free and open to everyone.

For event documentation please visit

Earlier Event: February 22
February Reading Group
Later Event: March 27
Marikiscrycrycry performance