The Centre Cannot Hold – OUT OF PRINT

Charles Stankievech



A collection of textual fragments in the style of the Jena Romantics' "Fragmente aus der Zukunft" is framed by two essays that trace the history of twentieth-century military Early Warning Systems. Dr. David Murakimi Wood, Canada Research Chair in Surveillance Studies and Editor-in-Chief of the journal Surveillance & Society, writes a detailed history of British wireless telegraphy outposts from his research in the National Archives. Charles Stankievech, through his fieldwork, outlines the architectural shifts in Early Warning Systems starting with WWI sound paraboloids, through WWII cement bunkers, into Cold War geodesic radar domes. The bricolage of literary and theoretic fragments form a ruinous texutal landscape for the flaneur to wander through, encountering fields as various as military documents, modernist poetry, science fiction, crtiical theory and scientific papers, including:

Clarice Lispector, J.G. Ballard, Ikhwan al Safa, Fernando Pessoa, Friedrich Schlegel, Georg Simmel, Walter Benjamin, Arthur Schopenhauer, Theodor Adorno, Gilles Deleuze, Robert Smithson, Lucy Lippard, W.G. Sebald, Ernst Jünger, Paul Virilio, Laurence Sterne, Joseph Heller, A.E. van Vogt, Fredric Jameson, Ursula K, Le Guin, Rainer Maria Rilke, Thomas Pynchon, Virginia Woolf, Georges Bataille, Jeremy Bentham, Michel Foucault, Albert Speer, Albert Einstein, Robert Smithson, Blaise Pascal, Carl von Clausewitz, US Army, Eyal Weizman, Reza Negarestani, Ezra Pound, Marshall Mcluhan, Friedrich Kittler, Paul N. Edwards, Julian Assange, and others.

The design of the publication plays with Harald Szeeman's original catalogue for the Science Fiction exhibition at the Kunsthalle Bern from 1967. Printing includes a unique metallic and black overprinting on newsprint.

A project by Charles Stankievech


English, 2000 copies

8 Pages, 43.3 x 57.5 cm

1 Center-fold poster image, 86 x 57.5 cm

Special Duotone printing (Metallic & black ink)

Broadsheet premium newsprint

ISBN: 987-1-55339-407-5


Co-published by the Agnes Etherington Art Centre, Queen’s University and K. Verlag for the exhibition Monument as Ruin by Charles Stankievech which won an OAAG Best Exhibition of the Year 2015.


Published in January 2015


Out of stock