Donnerstag, Juni 28, 2007

Description version 1.0 (for the exhibition in Erich Kästner museum)

As a part of our focus on concrete and digital poetry, we want to allow you to explore and experience these forms of poetic expression yourselves.
That’s why we will be presenting different elements of this small, but important field in the history, the now and the future of litterature.

There can be no doubt about the fact that we live in a world made of medias.
We get most of our knowledge about the world told from medias (from television, radio and newspapers). We find the things that interests us on the internet (at homepages which we often find with the assistance of search-engines like Google). But it’s not often we reflect upon the medias themselves.
Instead we interact with our computer, the computers of others and essentially each other, through the different medias. These medias can be apparently direct like the computerinterface (the place where the user meets the machine), complicated technical devices like broadband or apparently natural systems like that of language.
What we tend to forget is that neither the computers with its virtual desktop or our language - which it actually took us a long time (and the writing of a lot of unletterlike letters) to learn - are as immediate as they might appear at first.
The prove of this is shown through our immediate frustration when the computer breaks down. But it can also be seen in the immidiate laughter that often follows when we for some reason misunderstand each other in unexpected and entertaining ways. In both cases we are reminded of the fact that language as well as computer, are in fact controlled by certain rules that makes up their system. These systems tend to be more visible when they for some reasons are put out of function.

Concentrating on the language system it becomes clear that language can be respected by writers in order to tell stories about life and other things, which is the case in most litterature. But it’s also clear that it can be used in a more avantgardistic way by experimenting with the system itself and thereby telling something about language as a system instead. Something similar is also the case with computer. Anyway this volountarily breaking down or research of a system can be done in a pessimistic and critical way or with an optimistic tone, exposing a pure fascination of the material itself. Which one of the two tactics are being used always depends on the nature of the artist.

But no matter the strategy, it’s this kind of experimental litterature we want to present!

On the search of the concrete poem

A simple search on Zvab (Zentrales verzeichnis antiquarischer bücher) shows that there exists quite a few books on the subject in german. The list can be seen here

Freitag, Juni 22, 2007

Friedrich W. Block

A link to the page of one of the important thinkers on and off digital poetry. Dr. Friedrich W. Block

The digitalized worm

Johannes Auer has digitalized one of the most famous concrete poems, being that with the apple and the worm from Reinhard Döhl. The computer has made the worm come alive so to speak. Watch it here

With the projekt Johannes Auer is reflecting the constant restauration of artworks and arguing that they should be given the right to a natural death, as well as our society should stop focusing so much on youth.
Interestingly enough this is done in three parts: 1. with a "manifest for the natural death of the work of art", which is using explicit references to the french artist Marcel Duchamp and the futuristic manifesto written by the italian futurist F.T Marinetti. 2. with some animation that follows the idea of the manifesto, which is for example questioning the reasons for the restauration of the Frauen Kirche in Dresden. 3. with an interactiv part which is collecting signatures for the rights of the artworks to a natural death. A description of the work can be found here

Johannes Auer

I will be posting some thoughts on the german digital poet Johannes Auer (b.1962), whom we hope to able to present at the Bardinale this year, but until that's the case I will write a few things about him here and make a link section to some of his work.

Freitag, Juni 01, 2007

Felix Martin Furtwängler

The german bookartist Felix Martin Furtwängler (b. 1954) is currently exhibiting book-objects at Sächsische Landesbibliotek - Staatsuniversität bibliothek Dresden (SLUB). This is interesting as far as book-objects is an expression of the same interest in the material as is the case with concrete poetry, the material here being the book instead of the letters. An intro to the exhibition can be found here