Volodymyr Bilyk, Gerry Ha Ha
"Gerry Ha Ha is the repurposed response to the mess that was the year 2020. In a way, it is a 2020 vibe neutralizer.
As you know, the best way to handle the stress and anxiety caused by the relentless uncertainty of times like this is to laugh it off. Of course, you can’t laugh it off if something bad happens to you. Still, when your noosphere is irradiated with doomscrolling, misinformation, speculation, nonsense, and clueless fear mongering - it is a viable option.
Just open this book and recite one of the pages in any manner you find suitable, and it is all gone. Probably not, but just think about it - you just read a page full of strategically located ha’s. What does it feel like? Now that’s some yugen up yours, huh?
Who would’ve thought that you’d need the world going topsy-turvy to make it work?
That’s how this thing came to be. It was made long before there was any pandemic and “trying times” thing - it was merely a proud statement of an obnoxious individual who had some time on his hands and wanted to make something out of whack. It was a gimmick for the sake of a gimmick with no justification for it being printed. A “what if” fine-tuned for oblivion.
When I started doing what eventually became Gerry Ha Ha, I was interested in reducing things to something unexpected. My goal was to take some work of art and transform it in a way that was something else to the point that the transformation of the piece would be a narrative in and of itself.
I chose Gus Van Sant’s Gerry not because I have any particular sentiment to the film, but because I’ve stumbled upon a transcript of this movie and found it a worthwhile creative material. The transcript itself doesn’t convey anything close to its source, so its transformation would not make any difference. It is basically going to the parts unknown, where you can make a snowman out of null and void. Kinda nice but so what? This kind of narrative kinda sucks. You get this death knell of “and?” and that’s it - it is not enough to make the work worthwhile.
And then - the universe itself turned this thing upside down and made it mean something. Instead of being just a gimmicky something something - those ha’s and ha’s became retorts and ripostes to “these uptight times.” That’s what you call “getting real.”
Ha Ha Ha."
Volodymyr Bilyk, January 2021
Digitally printed, perfect bound edition limited to 99 copies. 148 x 148 mm, 56 pages. File under conceptual writing.