[DEBORD, Guy] CONSTANT (Nieuwenhuys). Copy of a typed letter to Debord dated 6 Juin 1960. 1 p.; 21 x 27 cm.; black ink on thin white stock.
Letter from Constant to Debord, where the Dutch architect expresses his disappointment with Debord’s decision to cancel the planned Situationist exhibition at the Stedelijk museum in Amsterdam (planned for May 1960, the exhibition would never take place due to a falling out with Museum Director Willem Sandberg). Constant then asks Debord whether he’s “willing to collaborate with [him] on the basis of the Amsterdam declaration, which was endorsed at the Munich conference”. He concludes by writing: “Given what remains of the S.I., the topic of my resignation of exclusion is ludicrous. Unitary urbanism will belong to those that will have done something with it. I am still counting on you. Yours truly, Constant.”
A copy of this letter was enclosed by Debord in his letter to Maurice Wycakert dated 22 June 1960. In that letter, Debord wites: “Ci-joint le dernier échange de correspondance entre Constant et moi. Le dernier, au sens fort du terme. J’avais pensé que les “erreurs” de Constant étaient toujours causées par son caractère bouillant, et son jugement lourdement unilatéral en bien des cas. Mais peut-être Asger avait-il raison, quelque peu, en parlant de provocation. Je m’étonne que l’idiotie de la proposition de collaboration qu’il m’a adressée, et l’insupportable ridicule du ton sur laquelle elle est faite – après tant de suspects déboires hollandais – aient pu échapper a un homme qui est tout de même intelligent; et que l’on pouvait croire très honnête” (Correspondance vol. 1, pp. 343-44). Translation follows: “Herewith the last exchange of correspondence between Constant and me. The last, in the strongest sense of the word. I had thought that Constant’s “mistakes” were always caused by his hot temper, and his heavily one-sided judgment in many cases. But perhaps Asger was somewhat right in speaking of provocation. I am astonished that the idiocy of the proposal for collaboration which he addressed to me, and the ridiculousness of the tone in which it is made – after so many suspicious Dutch setbacks – could have escaped a man who is after all intelligent; and one we once believed to be very honest “(Correspondance vol. 1, pp. 343-44). See here for more details.
DEBORD, Guy. Copy of a typed letter to Constant dated 21 Juin 1960. 3 p.; 21 x 27 cm.; black ink on thin white stock. Accounted for in Correspondance, Vol. I, pp. 340-42
Letter from Debord to Constant, in response to the Dutch architect’s June 6 letter. Debord tackles Constant’s points one by one. He also reaffirms his commutment to great idelogical discipline with the S.I., and rejects any “collaboration with uncontrolled elements”. He concludes with giving Constant the choice of what his relationship with the S.I. may look like moving forward.
Constant would be formally excluded from the SI soon thereafter.