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Available Now: Side Magazine,
The Coalman

Collage by Yasmine d’O.
    Bergen Assembly, our convener Saâdane Afif, and executive editor Yasmine d’O. are pleased to publish the sixth issue of Side Magazine which gives shape to the figure of the Coalman.

    Coalman, coalman! Which stories are hidden beneath the burden you carry, bending your body like a fragile blade of grass under the morning dew?

     The sixth edition of Side Magazine gives honour to the Coalman and bids farewell to his master, King Coal. Like a magnificent funeral, this issue celebrates the treasures this dark material brought forth in the name of progress, gives thanks for the comfort it provided and remembers the sufferings endured for its sake. Charles-François Mathis discusses the two historical bodies of King Coal—its physical form and symbolic capital—looking at how its rule began, and the march to-wards its end. Meanwhile, Jean-Luc Nivaggioni situates the experience of the miners in 1984, as they were striking for their right to exist, along-side the LGBT groups who came to support them. Continuing our series of individual painting analyses, Isolde Pludermacher digs into Gustave Courbet’s A Burial at Ornans (1849). In the spirit of honouring the Victorian era, when coal was oh so revered, Richard H. Horne’s series The True Story of A Coal Fire is reprinted as it was originally published in Household Words, edited by none other than Charles Dickens. Denis Herlin sings to the sweet tunes of Claude Debussy’s last composition, Les soirs illuminés par l’ardeur du charbon (“Evenings Lit by the Burning Coals,” 1917), produced for his coal merchant, Monsieur Croquin. Professor Irena Bukowska-Florenska explores the tradition of coal being used by Polish miners as a material for sculpture, and finally, Gabbi Cattani writes an elegy to all of the dead organisms that gave rise to coal.

Executive Editor: Yasmine d’O.
Chief Editor: Louisa Elderton
Associate Editor: Jonas von Lenthe
Concept: Saâdane Afif
Editorial Coordinator: Alix Chambaud
Research Assistant: Eirini Fountedaki
Translators: Ewa Borysiewicz,
Nina Kettiger
Proofreader: Diane Fortenberry
Design: Neue Gestaltung, Berlin

    The editorial committee for The Coalman is comprised of Saâdane Afif, Anna Bühler, Alix Chambaud, Louisa Elderton, Eirini Fountedaki, Jonas von Lenthe, Yasmine d’O., Pit Stenkhof, Kirsten Wandschneider.

    Bergen Assembly thanks the City of Bergen and the Arts Council of Norway for supporting this project. Thanks also goes to Ministère de la Culture, Institut Français, and Perspektive for supporting Side Magazine, The Coalman. 

Side Magazine is published by Wirklichkeit Books.

Order your copy:
Within Norway at Tekstallmenningen.no, or elsewhere at Wirklichkeitbooks.com


Bergen Assembly 2022
Exhibition: 8.9. — 6.11.2022
Opening Days: 8.9. — 11.9.2022

︎︎︎Within Norway
︎︎︎ Or elsewhere