[slidepress gallery=’imantskrumins_etroukothebook1′]

Hover over the image for full screen and navigation controls

Imants Krumins

Etrouko the Book I

play multimedia


“Etrouko the book I” ………. these are some of the images that will appear in the book, they are not photographs they are about photography.

I anticipate a book in print soon……….



………. lived most of my life in Australia

Exhibited on the Continent, The New World and The Old World………. No awards. no prizes, no commissions, no nothings etc

Author of some current Visual Arts textbooks


Music by Kevin MacLeod


Related links

Imants Krumins



I am paranoid


Editor’s note:

comments are open on this essay….

-david alan harvey

49 thoughts on “imants krumins – etrouko the book I”

  1. This essay is very unique,
    it is rough,
    it is powerful,
    it is dark,
    it is unexpected,
    it is bewildering,
    it is very artistic,
    it leaves me with questions,
    it is too short.

  2. “A bird does not sing because it has an answer. It sings because it has a song.”-chinese proverb

    as i’ve written to you before, we encircle ourselves with lines scribbled beneath our fingertips and along the spines of your teeth, that which carves out has been carved from within….

    as i wrote on alec soth, what best speaks to me are those books from which i can never leave, those books that teach me nothing except that we forever search, that we are but carriers and droppers of all that was spilled upon us….

    carved lines, purloined words, light as stolen diffusion…wreckage and reconstruction that comes from time bent over….

    the book is the skin we were born into and from which we will be peeled away…..

    cats piss on lots of things, their scent perpendicular, only we have neutered ourselves so much to the degree that we confined most of our pissing….

    but life unfolds like an accordian and so do we…and so do we….

    u already know what i think :)))

    and damn it, i forget my own line for you book…old fucking age ;)))

    the cuddled wolf eye, the bifurcated horse….the cloven knight…

    the bewitched day…

    scattering away

  3. For some reason it does not run smoothly on my computer.

    While it’s not anything I relate to at all, I know that you really don’t care if anyone does, so there is really not much to say. You certainly have your own, dark vision, though. Whatever it is you are trying to say (or perhaps you aren’t trying to say anything, it’s always hard to tell), I guess you’ve said something.

  4. Imants strikes again…
    how did this artist convince me?
    i dont know..
    but he did …big time…
    with his art…
    what else?
    Is Imants a genius?
    hmmm…i hate to say it , but ..i’m afraid so..
    bravo..congrats..u made me a believer..god damn it…!!!

  5. Like you yourself, Imants, this body of work is enigmatic, densely textured, full of questions with no interest in the answers, somewhat dark and unapologetically confusing. In a word, brilliant.

  6. Jim it is not a matter of not caring it is about accepting that it can and will be interpreted differently from intent. My only clue other than the images is that it is about photography and objects.

  7. Pingback: uberVU - social comments

  8. Imants;

    I’ve been mulling over your essay (and work in general). You know what? I decided they’revisual poems rather than photos. And like a poem, each person takes out of them what they may.

    Whether I am interpreting your true meaning or intent correctly;I don’t know… But they always hit me at a visceral level….


  9. Another essay I will have to view later when I get home. But responding to the given clue, Photography and objects I make a few brief comments.

    This is one of those pieces that benefits from exposition. It’s probably not Imant’s role to provide that or at least he evidently thinks not. One day, perhaps, a critic will come along and write that exposition about Imants’ work. Perhaps his book will contain an introduction by some esteemed art critic and this will help the viewer enormously, to get below the poetics and reach the academic ideas.

    But the clue as I take it is a critical reference to old notion of photography as a window on the world, and then how we fail to see photographs as objects. There is obviously a lot one can say about the relation of objects to photographs and how we treat photographs as though they were not objects. That is one possible tack to take when thinking about this work. Or it could be what photographs do to objects and the subjectivity that is inherent in a photograph. There are possibly others but this is the one that comes up clearest for me. I am not sure precisely which one(s) Imants has in mind. Anyway, if i am at all close, then it certainly tickles my brain cells in a nice way.

    I don’t get the title. It might mean nothing much but tickle Imants’ fancy. A bit of a piss take. That sounds like Imants’ style.

  10. I don’t think it’s really window versus artifact, but it may be that Ross is onto something with the visual poetry idea. But if so, it’s filled with symbolism too subjective for me to understand. By design, I suspect.

    “The rust and foul dust I can always explain,
    Vanishing memories melting in rain,
    It’s really not that you’ve gone quite insane,
    It’s just now it seems the pain’s the gain.”

  11. That’s a good cat, Imants. I like it. As a man who lives with cats, I’ve had my art pissed on more than once.

    I first looked at this this morning and did not leave a comment, because I had not decided what to think about it. I was a little bit irritated by the presentation and the music and I wanted to just look at the images for however long I chose, without music playing to tell me this was a dark essay, but then there were some technical difficulties that may have contributed to this negative view.

    Now I come back to it and this time I blow it up to full-size on my Apple Cinema Screen; this time there are no difficulties and it plays perfectly.

    I look for something to criticize, seeing as to how I was irritated this morning, but I can find nothing.

    It is brilliant. Way outside what I do, strive to do, desire to do, or would even have ever thought to do, but brilliant. The kind of thing that can come out of one mind on this earth and one mind only, yet that darkness that you portray is there for all of us, even if we are happy and light 70 percent of the time.

    And this time, the music seemed just right, liked it had been composed only for your images.

    I hate to say I love this essay, but I do, and I want that book when it comes out.

    Yesterday, by the way, one of my jackets fell off the coat tree that hangs by our front door. And Pistol-Yero, who I love too much to send away, came by before I could discover it and he pissed on it. I was just glad it was not my fancy parka, with it’s wolf ruff and wolverine trim, made for me by a whaling captain’s wife after I photographed her son’s wedding (no, I am not a wedding photographer) that fell, for he surely would have pissed on that, too.

  12. I knew this was imants before even looking.

    -No awards. no prizes, no commissions, no nothings etc……….I love that! so real and strong.

    I like the images that show similarities of one thing to another.

    Ciao, Valery

  13. i’ve been drawn to your mixed pieces as long as i have seen them…for me they stir inside because they are incised with a punctuated wit…and your creature-connections are usually delightful to my palette. but there is something creating a disconnect for me in this presentation; in part the mood of the music, as my personal soundtrack to your work lacks the gloom vibe and celebrates the kitchen sink drama because it is.

  14. Congratulations Imants. I like this piece and your work because it gives permission to the rest of us to break the rules. I am not one for following the rules for their sake, I am a spirit of the law kind of person most of the time. This is a spirit of photography kind of piece, not truly photography in the strict sense, more mixed media to me. Art in the strict sense but in the end it doesn’t really matter. Does it work? Yes. Does it seem too pretentious even though I am sure that is exactly what you are trying to avoid? Yes. Is it enigmatic. Yes. Is it filled with dark humor? Yes. I feel all these things simultaneously. You are seemingly deconstructing the idea of an image and quasi-randomly putting it back together. That is not a criticism, because if that is what you are doing that’s what makes it successful imo. If there is a back-story, context, parable, moral lesson or warning in this essay then I think it has been lost. But from what I can gather that is precisely your point, it was never meant to be found.

    All the best,


  15. David: We have so many really talented photographers and writers in the world today. They are committed, dedicated, and out on the cutting edge. My hat’s off to them. The problem is that the people running the magazines, newspapers, media companies, corporations, etc., etc. have lost their humanity. Some are highly religous, but they are not spiritual. There is a difference. They have totally discredited themselves and their publications and networks have lost all credibility. No wonder magazines and newspapers are going under, no one is reading the trash because it’s entertainment and not news, not documentary, not compassionate, not even passionate. It’s corrupt. It’s only about money. Thank goodness we have individuals who will not bow to the materialist culture and are trying with little or no support to show what is really going on in the world. This article shows it, as do most of those you post. My thanks to you.

  16. ‘the cat pissed on’ site actually made me laugh.. whatever the intent i enjoyed it.

    with the puzzle above .. the cloak seems pretty thick on first glance yet with time to reference, or a bottle of gin.. who knows..
    “they are not photographs they are about photography.”.. game is on..

    in any case – i think it may be a good book to decipher over time.. soak in reflections and drift with it..

    good luck.

  17. thanks Imants,

    your bold attitude and unique, intriguing style is always good to see and an excellent lesson in being yourself!

    “they are not photographs they are about photography.”… and the photographer???

    intriguing work… the dada vibe you have, reminds me of (although your stuff is quite different) the
    great work of Vaughn Oliver circa late 80’s/early 90’s and the wonderful ‘Journals of Jacob Mandeville’


  18. Jim, even if Ross is onto something and it is a visual poem (and I do not disagree) this does not necessarily discount alternative interpretations.There can be parallel meanings. Still, even poems have their intended meanings. Good poems and good art often have a variety of interpretations – you know “layers of meaning”, although priority is usually given to the artist’s intentions. Still sometimes the work goes beyond the intentions of the artist. If Imants isn’t interested in sharing the meaning it has for him with his audience, that is fine. It is obviously not important if that is the case. If he wants us to find our own meanings, that is fine. But this also does not rule out the possibility that the meanings some viewers devine in the work are not going to be uninteresting to others and important. This is, after all what goes on in art criticism all the time.

    Imants’s work may be unusual in this context , ie on Burn, and with most of the viewers of this site but it’s not at all unique in contemporary art galleries. (That is not meant as a backhander). I’m just saying poetical arrangements of images, even appropriated images as these seem to be, has been done quite often before. The selection of images and their chosen organisation is obviously important. If the selection and organisation is not important; if it were random, then it would just be surrealism again, wouldn’t it. Anyway… that’s just a few further thoughts by way of discussion.

  19. What I hated most in school was when a teacher told us what exactly a poet wanted to say with her/his poem..

  20. asses to ashes, lust to dust,
    heaven or hell or just plain rust
    first we walk, then we ride
    stooped and wise but all tore up inside
    constructs or destructs
    on the rocks it all sucks
    up through the straw down the drain
    ancients newborns all the same
    don’t cry don’t bat an eye
    you’re the oppressor or the oppressee
    you got the gun you have the fun
    but the evil eye putcha on the run
    cuz what goes around goes around

    so that’s it
    i think
    watched 7 or 8 or 3 times
    it’s all ancient
    nothing disappears,
    it just changes into something else
    and it goes on
    we go on
    and on
    there is no end

    the dud…heh

  21. so no one gets outta here alive.. thanks for reminding me Imants.. bugger!

    I like the look of it though, even if I don’t like being reminded that i’m aging. I’ve got the feeling you’d make good sculptures..

    Well done Imants.. Looks great.

  22. Imants,

    Interesting and thought provoking. IMO the pieces that work best are the juxtapositions of your own photography vs your own and found imagery. Those pages that are just the disparate imagery you saw in the world with your camera are very strong. The textual elements are sometimes too art school for me, but I can also see how they string the work together. A box set sounds like a good way to publish these pieces.

    Best of luck,


  23. Ross they work better at 220mm x150 mm in a 560mm x 570mm frame ………I tried larger in a show and they lost their intimacy and personal scale

  24. There lies a dilemma, the book binds the images into a sequence that created a thread. A boxed version allows images to be added and frees the “book” from a static beginning and end but destroys the works original intent.
    The boxed version would allow one to add their own input and that includes images of one’s choice or their own

  25. Great work, its raw at the same time sophisticated, introspective with a rich imaginary, authentic!. The collages are beautiful and the music besides being sublime was very well chosen, adding a lot to the images.
    When and where can i buy your book?
    Congratulations……..i see a lot, there are many people producing a lot but very few stuff really inspires me.


Comments are closed.