Jonathan Safran Foer

Jonathan Safran Foer

Die cutting a novel

Conversation with Jonathan Safran Foer about his book and artwork Tree of Codes, a novel that has been carved out of another novel by one of Foer’s favourite novelists, Bruno Schulz.

The Times described Jonathan Safran Foer’s (born 1977) 'Tree of Codes' as a “true work of art”. His publisher calls it a “sculptural object”. To create the book, Foer took Bruno Schulz’s novel 'The Street of Crocodiles' and cut out the majority of the words. Foer himself explains that by removing words, he carved out a new story. In this conversation with the Danish journalist and publicist Synne Rifbjerg, Foer tells the story behind the book – that he was called by a publisher one day, offering him a free hand to do any book he liked. Foer further explains why he used Bruno Schulz’s book as a point of departure. In the end the conversation turns toward Foer’s Jewish heritage and how – against his own will – it engraves itself in his writing.

Jonathan Safran Foer was interviewed by Synne Rifbjerg as part of the Louisiana Literature festival in August 2012.
Recorded August 23 2012 at the Concert Hall of the Louisiana Museum of Modern Art.

Produced by: Kamilla Bruus

© Louisiana Channel, Louisiana Museum of Modern Art - 2012.

Supported by Nordea-fonden.

  • Olafur Eliasson

    Advice to the Young

    “Artists should have confidence in the fact that making a drawing is changing the world.” Danish-Icelandic artist, Olafur Eliasson, here presents his strong and personal advice to young artists.

  • Yayoi Kusama

    Earth is a polka dot

    Interview with Japan’s legendary artist, who has been painting polka dots ever since she started as an artist. In this video she talks about one of her works, a light installation depicting her cosmic vision.

  • Olafur Eliasson

    A Riverbed Inside the Museum

    Like lava from a volcano, Olafur Eliasson’s fascinating installation ‘Riverbed’ runs through the Danish Louisiana Museum of Modern Art. The highly praised artist here shares his intriguing thoughts behind the installation.

  • Ian McKeever

    Mystery to the Viewer

    “I am trying to take the sense of speed out of the visual world of looking.” Interview with renowned British artist, Ian McKeever.

  • Wim Wenders

    Advice to the young

    “Do what nobody else can do except for you.” Such is the unflagging advice from German filmmaker Wim Wenders, who in this video gives us his take on how to become a successful artist.

  • William Kentridge

    How we make sense of the world

    "There is a desperation in al certainty. The category of political uncertainty, philosophical uncertainty, uncertainty of images is much closer to how the world is", says South African artist William Kentridge in this video presenting his work.

  • Chimamanda Adichie

    Beauty does not solve any problem

    I am drawn to the beauty of sentences, Nigerian writer Chimamanda Adichie confesses in this interview. Nevertheless it is important to keep a distance to your characters.

  • Keith Tyson

    Art in a coffee cup

    ”To understand a coffee cup, you would have to understand the entire universe”. Meet British artist Keith Tyson, as he explains the interconnectedness of existence through a coffee cup.

  • Alaa al-Aswany

    Dictatorship is a Disease

    Why is dictatorship so hard to get rid of? Best-selling Egyptian novelist, Alaa al-Aswany, here presents us with surprising takes on a continuously hot topic.

  • David Hockney

    Photoshop is boring

    In this video David Hockney meditates on the concept of seeing. On depicting spring, on Picasso's owl that thrills us, on Photoshop and on why magazine images today are so dull - and on the similarities between seat belts and bondage.

  • Sarah Sze

    The meaning between things

    ”A sculpture is constantly growing and dying at the same time. It is a parallel process of construction and deconstruction.” Meet contemporary artist Sarah Sze in her New York studio.

  • Oh Land

    The dark beneath the bright

    "When I lost dance I felt like there was no gravity, and I might fly away and disappear." Meet the young singer and composer Oh Land in this interview about finding your way through life and staying true to yourself.