Hors (Beyond)

I came upon the draft of my letter to André Breton, sent by way of farewell in December 1954, quite by accident these past few days.

"… I have to leave you, since I cannot come to the meetings, to try – alone – what this short Hungarian folk poem invites me to do:

The man who wants to become a piper

Must go down to hell;

There he has to learn how to blow

Into the bagpipe…"

Today, in April 1999, I realise it has been done.

Such a long season in hell! Forty five years, but not according to the Gregorian calendar…I needed a great breath, I have learnt.

Now I am 'out': out of view, out of the background, out of range – and also out of reach.

Now, I may have the truth in a soul and body.

  Marcoussis, April 1999
(From the catalogue of the exhibition Hors, Galerie de France, 1999)