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Book of the Week: A Pick by Forrest Soper

Book of the Week Book of the Week: A Pick by Forrest Soper Forrest Soper selects Duelos y Quebrantos by Sebastián Bruno as Book of the Week.
Duelos y Quebrantos 
 By Sebastián Bruno. Ediciones Anómalas, 2018.
Forrest Soper selects Duelos y Quebrantos by Sebastián Bruno from Ediciones Anómalas as Book of the Week.

"I have been waiting for Duelos y Quebrantos by Sebastián Bruno to be made into a book for many years. Now, thanks to the Spanish publisher Ediciones Anómalas, I finally have the book in my hands.

Over the course of four years, Bruno retraced the journey of the fictitious Don Quixote as he walked across Castilla–La Mancha in central Spain. Naming the book after a regional dish first mentioned by Miguel de Cervantes in the early seventeenth century, Bruno imbues his work with subtle and often contradictory symbolism. The dish, an omelet of chorizo, bacon, and sometimes lamb’s brains, is believed to have originated when regional farmers would create a meal from the unexpected loss of a farm animal. The term ‘Duelos y Quebrantos’ does not translate directly to English. Some say it means ‘Duels and Losses’, some say it means ‘Mourning, and Carrying Forward’, and others say it means’ Bereavement and Breaking’ — the last translation referring to Jewish and Muslim individuals breaking with their former faith as they were offered this dish after converting to Christianity.

As you read the book, you quickly realize that the images are as multi-faceted as the title. Haunting black-and-white photographs seem timeless as they paint a picture that speaks equally to the reality of the present and the fiction of the past. Religious iconography is seamlessly paired with raw scenes from the street. Day and night blends into one, as allusions of matadors flood the pages among woven tapestries and plates of food. The work is distant and detached, yet engaging and direct. In Bruno’s world, everything is both exactly as it appears, and nothing like it appears.

At the end of the day, I suppose that’s why I’m drawn to Sebastián Bruno’s imagery. It is a rare occurrence when you have a book that is both so intellectually challenging and so straightforward and accessible at the same time. Duelos y Quebrantos is a book with many different interpretations that are all equally relevant and captivating.

It doesn't matter whether you see windmills or giants when you read this book, you will still be left awestruck by this criminally under-rated work." — Forrest Soper

Purchase Book

Duelos y Quebrantos By Sebastián Bruno. Ediciones Anómalas, 2018.
Duelos y Quebrantos By Sebastián Bruno. Ediciones Anómalas, 2018.

Forrest Soper is an artist and photographer based out of Santa Fe, New Mexico. Forrest is the editor of photo-eye Blog, a former photochemical lab technician at Bostick & Sullivan, and a graduate of the Santa Fe University of Art and Design.