Death Book II by Bruce LaBruce
Foreword by Slava Mogutin
Available SIGNED by the artist
PUBLISHED BY BARON BOOKS
The second instalment of The Death Book is dedicated to Bruce LaBruce’s archive of rarely published or previously unpublished work characterized by morbid fascinations. Here photographs challenge the viewer to explore what lies beneath the veneer of Western society.
The book brings this body of work together for the first time, combining LaBruce’s performances, actions, film production stills and photography that explicitly outline his obsessions, with never-before exhibited archival works from projects including Hustler White, Otto; or Up with Dead People, and L.A. Zombie.
The book is edited as loosely connected vignettes, characterised by horror, the carnage accelerated rather than overcome, questioning existing values, hierarchies, and perceptions of good and evil. A variety of faces and body parts appear, including those of actors Francois Sagat and Tiger Tyson, model/actor Tony Ward, artists Kembra Pfahler and Slava Mogutin, and cameos by legendary figures such as performance artist Ron Athey, musician/artists Genesis P-Orridge and Lady Jaye, artist Dash Snow, actor Brad Renfro, Asia Argento and Bruce LaBruce himself.
The Death Book also introduces the art director Max Siedentopf, who has designed the book as a paraphrase of the Bible, punctured with three bullet holes, piercing the book from front to back. The book contains an introduction by artist, photographer and writer Slava Mogutin.
For over a quarter-century the auteur/provocateur known as Bruce LaBruce has been disrupting, dissecting, and disrobing in the name of cinema. Blasted into the demimonde of underground punk moviemaking with his feature debut, No Skin Off My Ass, LaBruce quickly established that, while he was certainly game for exploring the messy, sticky zones of fringe film, he was actually the unholy product of arthouse auteurism. From Robert Altman to Federico Fellini and Werner Herzog, LaBruce mines the sacred texts of the canon and inserts his own revolutionary gay-sex-positive narratives. Layered with scathing wit and a fundamental rejection of capitalist control over the mind and body, his films and photographs take to task the mainstream porn industry as well as Hollywood. In this spirit, he has collaborated with actors—like Slava Mogutin, Tony Ward, and Francois Sagat—who swing between art and commerce, fashion and filth, the avant-garde and the boulevard. Bruce LaBruce’s particular brand of regal queer fecundity has spawned a generation of feral filmmakers (and ravenous audiences).