1920: OON


Kurt Schwitters: OON [fec] (1920)

I’m lying in bed, I’m sleeping, flat on my back. A thin sheet of paper. Pressed flat. An other world orbits around me. I’m looking around. That’s me there beside me. Or is it? A thin sheet of paper, pressed flat? And your hands? Is it me? Is he you?

It’s a carapace lying beside me, empty. Who am I? Is it me there beside me? Not me wrapped up in the covers?: thin cover asleep on my bed: I wake up. Empty carapace. Thin, flat, lies beside me, and sleeps.

from “Ideas for Poems” (c. 1926)

[“Fec” is an abbreviation for the Latin fecit, “he did it,” which artists and artisans used to put after their signature on a work—so the title of Schwitter’s collage is something like “Made by OON.”]

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