Sergio Bizzio

Argentina

©Julia Gutiérrez

 

 

Sergio Bizzio, born in Buenos Aires in 1956, is a narrator, poet, dramatist, scriptwriter and screenwriter. Author of a large oeuvre and considered ahead of his time, he has often been hailed as one of Argentina’s best contemporary writers. The films based on his books have all won the most prestigious awards at the New York, Cannes and Tokyo festivals.

 

 

After their wedding party, Carlos and Irina go on a honeymoon: Diez días en Re (“Ten Days in Re”). She is happy; he is still a little drunk. They take a plane, get on a barge, and after many hours travelling they arrive at the beaches of Re. The landscape is perfect. And while looking at Irina smiling from the shore, a devastating certainty falls over Carlos: he does not love her. This thought stuns him in such a way that his arm is left stiff for days and he can’t move it. Carlos wanders like a soul in pain trying to make sense of his existence and thinking about how to proceed.

From what is initially perceived as a story of a separation, something else soon arises. The story mutates and twists, and drags us through the sand of its tropical paradise into the deepest bewilderment. On the scenography of a honeymoon, Bizzio sets a series of elements that stretch the limits of reality. Page by page the story becomes a new one, becoming thick and magnetized like the jungle that surrounds the characters. Once again Bizzio unfolds his sharply delicate prose, immersing us once more, with a disturbing naturalness, in a universe full of strangeness.

 

 

Bizzio’s versatility is the result of a systematic resistance to common places.

La Nación

 

Bizzio's literature is a one-way trip.

Revista Ñ

 

Bizzio masterfully executes the most hilarious stories imaginable in Argentina today.

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At the age of twelve, Irina lost her mother in a road accident. The next day she was sent to live with her father in Huel, a tiny village in the middle of the plains. For years she had not heard from him. She could only remember him as an office worker with an orderly life. Now he was a savage who looks after his physique: he eats raw eggs for breakfast, breaking them directly into his mouth, dressed in a sack and tie.

Life in Huel is monotonous and idle, until her father’s ex-wife returns with the intention of taking their house from them. They begin to build a new one nearby, but day after day they find the foundations destroyed. From then on, the plausible begins to get strange and twisted.

In Mi vida en Huel (“My Life in Huel”) Sergio Bizzio explores with delicate precision the social, aesthetic and amorous fantasies of an out-of-the-ordinary teenager in a world where the borders of the possible become increasingly diffuse. His mastery of the construction of atmosphere keeps us floating, flying over the land of an unusual and disturbing village.

 

 

Borgestein tells the apparently everyday story of a marriage crisis. Julia is an actress who only ever thinks of her career. When her husband is attacked by one of his patients he withdraws to a house in the mountains to think about his own life and their life together. With typical absurd narrative moments and unexpected twists and turns, the author has created a jewel of current Argentine writing.

 

 

As a star author grows tired of his success, he uses a plane crash to stage his death and starts a new life in the jungle. In his latest novel El escritor comido (“The Eaten Writer”), Bizzio takes the reader on an unusual and imaginative adventure while posing elementary questions on mankind today.

 

 

Written with the quiet humour and the fresh and concise style that characterise Bizzio’s books, Aiwa tells a tender and unusual love story in a world both bizarre and ordinary. When the teenagers Aiwa and Sony meet, it is love at first sight, but they have to hide their relationship. However, there are mysterious changes going on in Aiwa’s remote village, and soon a group of scientists disturbs their quiet life. What will they find?

 

 

In Bizzio’s novel Realidad (“Reality”), an Arabic terrorist commando hijacks an Argentine television channel in order to put pressure on the government to hand over a traitor. The Afghan head of the intruders is fascinated by the dynamics of the broadcasted reality show Big Brother and decides to use it to dismantle Western values. Indeed, the candidates accept any form of humiliation in order to become famous. As the hijackers are finally overwhelmed by the police, the fictional existence of the contestants ends and they return to real life - or is it the other way round?

 

A great novel; at once intelligent and entertaining, accessible and reflective, bright and funny. This is a novel that speaks about the state of the modern world in a modern way.

La Nación

 

 

Era el cielo (“It Was The Sky”) tells the story of a faltering relationship. Only a few days after making up with her, a man watches his wife being raped. He remains undiscovered and the two of them never utter a word on the matter. Caught up in the resulting dynamics, the protagonist sleepwalks towards the edge of a psychological abyss, only saved by his love for his son.

 

Era el cielo is a literary triumph that explores the human condition ‘postcapitalism’ with a documentary-like rigour.     

Rodolfo Fogwill, Ñ

 

 

Rabia (“Rage”) is a fast-paced love story revealing the lives of the lower classes with psychological empathy and a good dose of black humour. After a heated argument with his foreman, the construction worker José María ends up strangling him and flees to the palatial villa where his girlfriend Rosa works as a maid. Hiding out in one of the attic, he watches the family. Then Rosa is raped…

 

Powerful prose and characters

Publishers Weekly

 

With light irony, Bizzio reveals the ugly secrets of a family.

Le Temps

 

Rabia is the best novel I’ve read in the past few years.

César Aira

 

Rabia possesses a rare originality. One of the most authentic novels of the past decade.

Fogwill

 

 

 

Rights:

 

Novels:

 

Diez días en Re

Buenos Aires: Literatura Random House 2017, 122 p.

 

Mi vida en Huel

Buenos Aires: Mondadori 2016, 165 p.

 

Borgestein

Buenos Aires: Random House Mondadori 2012, 191 p.

France: Bourgois 2014 Israel: Zikit Italy: La Linea 2014

 

El escritor comido

Buenos Aires: Mansalva 2010, 222 p.

Uruguay: Criatura 2012

 

Aiwa

Buenos Aires: Mansalva 2009, 144 p.

(Adaptation with Pablo Tunica as Graphic Novel planned)

 

Realidad

Buenos Aires: Mondadori 2008, 224 p.

Film rights under option

Bulgaria: ERA France: Bourgois 2014 Italy: Edizioni E/0 2009 Spain: Caballo de Troya 2009

 

Era el cielo

Buenos Aires: Interzona 2007, 2011, 2017 189 p.

Films rights sold to RT Features

Brasil: Iluminuras ● Israel: Carmel ● Spain: Caballo de Troya 2009

 

El día feliz de Charlie Feiling

Rosario: Editorial Beatriz Viterbo 2006, 128 p.

(with Daniel Guebel as co-author)

 

Rabia

Buenos Aires: Interzona 2004, 2011, 189 p.

Buenos Aires/Barcelona: Mondadori 2005

Film directed by Sebastián Cordero,

produced by Guillermo del Toro 2009, released in Latin America, France and New York

Premio Internacional de la Diversidad

Brazil: Record 2008 Chile: Libros del Laurel France: Bourgois 2008 Germany: DVA 2010 Israel: Simtaot 2012 Italy: Donzelli 2009 Netherlands: Meulenhoff 2010 Spain: El Cobre 2004; Mondadori 2005; Nuevas Ediciones 2008 UK (world rights): Bitter Lemon Press 2009 Uruguay: Criatura

 

En esa época

Buenos Aires: Emecé 2001, 208 p.

Premio Emecé de Novela

 

Planet

Buenos Aires: Sudamericana 1999, Interzona 2015 208 p.

 

Más allá del bien y lentamente

Buenos Aires: Sudamericana 1997, 214 p.

 

Son del África

Mexico City and Buenos Aires: Fondo de Cultura Económica 1993, 149 p.

 

Infierno Albino

Buenos Aires: Sudamericana 1992, 169 p.

 

El divino convertible

Buenos Aires: Catálogos Editora 1990, 239 p.

 

 

Stories:

Dos fantasías espaciales

(Estancia, Viaje al único)

Buenos Aires: Mansalva 2015, 125 p.

 

En el bosque del sonambulismo sexual

Buenos Aires: Mansalva 2013, 92 p.

 

Un amor para toda la vida

Buenos Aires: Mansalva 2011, 61 p.

Film directed by Paula Hernández, 2011

Chile:  Libros del Laurel Egypt: Dar Khan

 

 

Martín Fierro, Madrid: 451 Editores 2008

 

Chicos, Buenos Aires: Interzona 2004, 2012, 169 p.

 

Cinismo (published in “Chicos”)

Made into the film XXY, directed by Lucía Puenzo, produced by Luis Puenzo and Wanda Vision. Five awards in Cannes 2007; winner of the Goya Award

Brazil:   Iluminuras 2010 (anthology Os outros) France: Magellan 2010

 

 

Participation in anthologies:

La Argentina cómo narración

Buenos Aires: Fondo Nacional de las Artes (FNA)

 

 

Essay:

El genio argentino, Buenos Aires: Eloísa Cartonera 2004,15 p.

 

 

Poetry:

Te desafío a correr como un idiota por el jardín, Mansalva 2008 64 p.

 

El abanico matamoscas, Belleza y Felicidad 2000

 

Mínimo Figurado, Edición Último Reino 1988, 41 p.; Tierra Baldía 1990

 

Gran salón con piano, Ediciones Salido, 1985, 62 p.

 

 

Theatre:

Gravedad, 2003

Buenos Aires: Beatriz Viterbo 1996, 84 p.

Interzona: 2017

Film rights sold; director: Fernando Spinner

 

La china (with Daniel Guebel as co-author), 1996, 2009

Argentina: Interzona

 

El hospital de los podridos y otras maravillas (version of Cervantes’ “Entremeses”), 1994

 

El Amor, 1996

 

Un Fausto criollo (version of Estanislao del Campo’s “Fausto”), 1993

 

 

Filmography

 

Screen plays:

Adiós querida luna (based on the theatre piece Gravedad), 2005

 

El regreso de Peter Cascada, 2005

 

Chicos Ricos, 1999

 

 

Direction:

100 tragedias (together with Mariano Galperín) 2008

 

Rey Queen (documentary), 2006

 

El disfraz, 2003

 

Animalada, 2001

 

No fumar es un vicio como cualquier otro (to be released in 2010)