“A man wakes up one morning and finds his nose gone. He attempts to track it down through the streets of his city, going to the police, placing newspaper advertisements for its return, seeking medical advice. When he does meet his nose (in a cathedral) he realises to his dismay that his nose is of a higher rank than he is. His own nose will not speak to him. When his nose is arrested (trying to leave the city in disguise), it still will not rejoin his face. But, one morning, he wakes and the nose is back in place.” – Kentridge, p. 7.
The publication I Am Not Me, The Horse Is Not Mine (a Russian peasant expression used to deny guilt) is published by the Goodman Gallery, and contains a series of essays lecture notes, lecture extracts and commentary by William Kentridge on the eight films and performance event that was first presented to international acclaim at the Sydney Biennale, 2008.
The event comprises a multi-channel projection installation of eight film fragments entitled I am not me, the horse is not mine. Based on the absurdist short story, The Nose (1837), by Nikolai Gogol, the installation promises to keep audiences transfixed with its mixture of self-reflective fragments, absurd cut-outs, instrumental and vocal soundscapes and projections. I am not me, the horse is not mine takes the short story, its earlier history, and its possible histories as a basis for “looking at the formal inventiveness of different strains of Russian Modernism and the calamitous end of the Russian avant-garde” (Kentridge).