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** Limited edition of 150 copies ** Presented here as novel and CD audio work, The Happy Jug uses a combination of verbatim text, fiction, granular synthesis and speculative philosophy to interrelate these formally distinct events in a weird causal relationship, reflecting on the palpable emotional and physical suffering connected to austerity politics — in particular the UK 2015 general election and its aftermath.
The audio CD, produced by Kepla, features this narrative spoken by the author, Nathan Jones with his wife Nina. The book acts as a libretto for the audio, but deviates from it at times, and adds an experimental text dimension to the glitchy textures of the sound and voice. “I brought the happy jug home the day I found out about a grant, which would eventually lead me to write this novel. The grant is a Paul Auster-style narrative device, in that it makes me unanswerable to material demands, and projects my life into a boundedlessness vertigo … the happy jug a concrete marker of my vulnerable but precise re-emergence into the world of matteringlessness: theory.”
At this time, Nina has migraines. She goes for an MRI scan but we hear nothing, her exhaustion apparently just an example of the general pressure of living under austerity. This austerity is due to be relieved when a left-leaning coalition gain control of government. A year later, I smash the jug. The MRI scan is transformed. Nina now has a brain tumour which has been growing for more than fifteen years. The result of the general election is also rewritten.
Nathan Jones is a writer and artist. His work often reflects on the relationship between the textual and temporal, the irregular measure that a text’s progression keeps, and the ruptures of time into eras, contemporanaeties, histories and speculations that writing inaugurates. Nathan is co-editor of mind-language-technology publisher Torque, director of new media and performance agency Mercy, and Lecturer in Fine Art at Lancaster University. He has curated various projects such as The Act of Reading (2015), Syndrome (2014–15), and Electronic Voice Phenomena (2009–13). His solo work includes commissions for Cape Farewell, Abandon Normal Devices, and Liverpool Biennial/ Mathaf Arab Museum of Modern Art.
Kepla is the musical works of UK-based artist Jon Davies since 2015. His compositions comprise of sculpting salvaged audio from various secondary sources to create psychogeographic and speculative environments, embedding the listener into otherworldly, and all-too- worldly spaces. His practice aims to conceptualise the capitalocene and how people and things are organised, mined and exploited. Over the past three years Kepla has produced a self-released EP; co-created Absent Personae with media theorist DeForrest Brown, Jr. and video artist Chris Boyd and composed the soundtrack for The Happy Jug