This lion a gift from Sylvère in the summer of 2005. We were in upstate New York and it’s likely he won it or bought it for me at the county fair. He wrote an inscription, I won’t type it here. The lion was clearly his avatar, so it remained unnamed, unlike a lot of the animal icons and mascots we collected and gave to each other over the years.
Early on in its life, the paper-thin ceramic lion tipped over and broke, leaving a hole not exactly where his heart ought to be but close enough. It became our sad joke, and since then I’ve carried the lion around with me from place to place in a jewelry store bag. Its home right now is inside a cabinet under a bookshelf in the front room.
Chris Kraus is a writer and critic. Her novels include Aliens and Anorexia, I Love Dick, Torpor and Summer of Hate and she has published three books of cultural criticism Video Green: Los Angeles Art and the Triumph of Nothingness, Social Practices and Where Art Belongs. In 2017 she wrote the biography After Kathy Acker, which was published by Semiotext(e) and Penguin Press. She is a co-editor of Semiotexte, alongside Hedi El Kholti and the late Sylvère Lotringer.