Jana Vanecek

My Body is an Alphabet

Digital Fanzine p.56 | Video (DCP) 00:00:17

The digital fanzine "My Body is an Alphabet" by Jana Vanecek was published as part of the series "A Throw of the Dice" in 2022. The series was created by Delphine Chapuis Schmitz for the online project "There is something wrong with my hands. Oh yes, they're not holding you." curated. The goal of the fanzine is to raise awareness about Mental Health and Neurodiversity.

The text layer consists of interwoven text fragments recorded with speech-to-text by Johanna Hedva, Starhawk, Serhij Zhadan, Jenny Odell, and Vanecek herself, as well as text fragments from memes circulating in the neurodivergent community. Images were created using a text-to-image A.I. (VQGAN + clip). The image and text are independent narrative structures that interact and complement each other. With the scattered text fragments - as a kind of "dispersed writing", as practised by the artist with her ADHD - neurodiversity is not taken up only thematically but also formally.

The main protagonist relives traumatic events in the form of flashbacks and nightmares. By not leaving bed, they avoid situations or people that remind them of the events, yet feel nervous or hypervigilant and experience extreme changes in mood and perception. At the same time, they suffer from emotional and physical symptoms, depression, anxiety, irritability, fatigue, and physical pain. In the grip of the flashback, time becomes fluid; time loses all meaning. The past and the present collapse into one, and the main protagonist is transported back to moments they have thought were long gone.

Monsters emerge from the darkness, their twisted forms and grotesque shapes filling the room with horror. But these monsters are not simply flashbacks. They are a manifestation of the power that trauma has over us. They suggest that the past cannot simply be forgotten or pushed aside but is a force that continues to shape our lives long after that moment. At the same time, the monsters are also a symbol of the violence that permeates our society. Cross-referenced with the text, they remind us that the horrors we experience are not simply isolated incidents but systemic problems that must be negotiated socially.

The Teaser for the magazine was screened at the movie theatre of the Literaturhaus Liechtenstein.

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