The protagonist is a minor painter with a Buster Keaton profile who, in the course of a Dadaist prank, makes the acquaintance of a conventionally attractive young English typist. Our hero, Caspar, has a rather obscure (if not fictitious) background, littered with innuendos of an extraordinary youth under the wing of a mysterious guardian, and he seems to find young Caroline exotic in her ordinariness. The other members of Caspar’s surrealist group, the Serapion Brotherhood (an Irwinesque name if there ever was one, harkening back to E.T.A. Hoffmann and referencing a similarly named Russian writers fraternity of the 20’s), are enjoying an extended adolescence, playing games with irrationality as they play peek-a-boo with their individual insecurities within the context of their grand surrealist gestures.
Illustration: Exquisite Corpse (1928) by Man Ray, Joan Miro, Yves Tanguy, and Mas Morise