The format of this book is quite large, with a soft cover and relatively thin leaves that don’t turn particularly well due to the DVD pasted into the back – always a difficult problem. Still, both the format and the matt paper work well with the raw, coarse, monochrome photographs.
One of these intriguing grainy images appears on the front cover, with the book’s title for some reason printed at an angle. Publishing details are on the inside back cover, larger than is customary, and on the outside back cover there is a piece about the importance of Zwartjes as an avant-gardist of arthouse cinema.
For the rest the book consists entirely – apart from an occasional black page – of photographs taken by Zwartjes while shooting his films. As the photographs have enough to offer, nothing more is required. It begins with a full-length portrait of Zwartjes with camera, and from there we are drawn in as visitors via the other protagonists, human details and empty rooms.
The only colour is the red on the spine, you think, until you have a look at the DVD: a soundless short film in which somewhere out in the open a difficult-to-identify crawling figure ends up strangling a woman and roping her to his (or its?) back. Here the colours change from lilac to yellow to pink. Bizarre and fascinating.