"The Other Name" nominated to the Norwegian Critics Prize
In The Other Name, the first volume of what will be his major work Septology, Jon Fosse paints literary tableaux that lodge in the readers’ eyes. It is Advent, and a painter named Asle, living in the small town of Dylgja, is preparing for his annual exhibition in Bjørgvin.
Fosse, with his repetitive, rhythmic prose, conjures up an evocative universe blending memories, reality, and imagination. For who is Asle’s friend Asle, who lives in Bjørgvin, is also a painter, but is suffering terribly from long-standing alcoholism? And is that really the young couple Asle and Ales, with eyes only for each other, that the first Asle sees in the playground?
Fosse uses doppelgangers and mirrorings to explore the big eternal themes of God, art, love, and death. For Fosse—and Asle—art and literature are where memories are transformed and expressed anew: as a picture that gives off light in the darkness.
With The Other Name, Fosse has renewed his own instantly recognizable prose. The result is a powerful and moving work of novelistic art.
Statement from the Jury