stuttgarter zeitung on "zettel"
Early Conflicts. Example: the distributing of poetry leaflets in public space,
Austria, Germany, Switzerland, Holland 1974-78.
The poet Christian "Ide" Hintze in Stuttgart
Bad News from Book Week
A photocopier serves him as a printing press, as he has no need for a publisher – even though he has one. Christian Ide Hintze, called "Ide", 24 years old, poet from Vienna, spends three weeks travelling through German cities to distribute leaflets – leaflets on which he disseminates poems, messages, reflections, utopias or aphorisms among the people. He wants his readers to see and get to know him not only printed between two book covers, but on the street as well. And he himself – in “civilian life” a communication science student – wants to get talking with them, learn from them and get inspired by them to write more and more “literature on leaflets”.
Hintze has distributed an impressive 1.2 million of his handy-sized leaflets over the past four years. In Vienna, his home city, he is even a universal celebrity – and many people come up to him on Kärntnerstraße when he distributes new writings from his own pen. He also met with interest yesterday and the day before yesterday in Stuttgart: on Untere Königstraße, outside the Daimler-Benz factory gates and in front of Niedlich’s Bookstore in Schmale Straße.
Something bad, however, befell Christian Ide Hintze at the opening of the “Stuttgart Book Fair” on Wednesday evening at the federal state trade licensing office: just as he was about to distribute his small leaflets to the guests in the foyer in front of the big hall, he was immediately thrown out. There was no explanatory statement; probably, 'Ide' was thought to be a political agitator, an extremist who wanted to disrupt the book exhibition. It was probably held against him that he wears a hat even while disseminating his leaflets in indoor locations. Anyhow, he succeeded in handing his written item to senior mayor Rommel outside the door. When the welcoming committee inside tried submissively to relieve the city chief of this little piece of paper, he rejected this request, however.
A little while later, host Dr. Hildebrandt expounded in his opening speech that books meant freedom, because poets and authors could record thoughts and opinions therein. Prophecies of doom, continued Hildebrandt, were putting this freedom at risk, “but what value do these claims and allegations have when no proof is presented to the public?”
This proof had been delivered by Hildebrandt’s employees just a moment before – bookseller Wendelin Niedlich left the book exhibition along with Hintze out of protest.
On a 10.5 centimetre-large leaflet “Ide” writes, for example: “Without this leaflet we two would have performed one movement fewer”. And that is correct. And Dr. Hildebrandt made a proper fool of himself in addition.
(Thomas Borgmann in: Stuttgarter Zeitung, Friday, 17 Nov. 1978)