Ryba, a Russian and English book from Mikhail Karasik
(M.K. Publishers) Ryba. [Essays, Tales, Articles in Russian and English.] Artist’s book by Mikhail Karasik. [St.Petersburg. 2006.] 56p. 8” x 17”. Text and illustrations in black and white, silkscreen printed on black paper. Black card covers with title in white; black sewn binding. Black cloth and board dropback box with white silkscreen of a domino piece. Wraparound black card protective folder. One in an edition of 37 numbered and signed copies. Fine.
“The dictionary translates the Russian word ryba into English as fish. It does not translate the other meanings of the word. In Russian, ryba also means the end of a game of dominoes. It is the word spoken by the player who makes the last move, before all the dots on the remaining dominoes are added up.
“In publishing and printing, a ryba also means a dummy book design. The title of the Ryba collection of essays, articles and short stories reflects both meanings of the word. …
“In this particular publication, the artist is also the author of the short stories. He throws his texts onto the table like dominoes. The dots are the facial side and the texts are the reverse side of the domino. The game ends when the sixth domino is placed on the table. This book also ends unexpectedly. All that is left to be done is to count the dots on the remaining dominoes, like the empty pages. Dominoes remaining in the hand and unpublished text are the results of the game and the results of life, summed up by the short Russian word ryba.” – Karasik.