Modern Love

1978, 78:57 min.
Constance DeJong

Constance DeJong’s Modern Love is a radio play adaptation of the artist’s novel of the same name, first self-published as a set of serialized chapbooks between 1975 and 1977. Difficult to summarize, the novel cross-cuts between different temporalities and perspectives, trading between the points-of-view of an unnamed narrator, a man named Rodrigo Cortes, and two women named Charlotte and Fifi Corday. The book’s approach had a palpable impact on the culture of downtown ‘70s and ‘80s New York performance and writing, and was republished by Primary Information and Ugly Duckling Presse in 2017 to significant acclaim.

In 1976, DeJong produced this audio variation at the ZBS Foundation, a non-profit recording studio and working commune in upstate New York, mixing her own reading of the material with narration, light sound foley, original music by composer Philip Glass, and pop music like The Chantels. This digitized tape was recently discovered and restored by audio engineer Robert Bielecki.

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