Fluxus Heidelberg Center BLOG


This FHC BLOG will contain an overview of all news we find and get in connection to Fluxus. Articles, publications, events, celebrations, Biographies, you name it. Every month the collection of the blog will be published on the FHC website as a digital archive

Sunday, June 29, 2008

Perhaps - Fluxus Poetry

Perhaps is a Video with Fluxus Poetry by Litsa Spathi from the Fluxus Heidelberg Center. Recorded June 2008.

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Sunday, June 22, 2008

New Trilogy by Litsa Spathi

Litsa Spathi published a new set of three books today. The complete set is part of the Performance with title "Balla Balla". The performance itself resulted in a collection of visual poetry that is published as part of the performance.

The books are available for others as well at the link: http://stores.lulu.com/fluxusheidelberg.

A colour-version is to be published as well.

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Saturday, June 21, 2008

CD for the Fluxus Heidelberg Center

Nico van Hoorn sent us this CD with the video of his installation that is currently visible in Nijmegen. Title: Fluxus Train.

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Monday, June 16, 2008

-o-oho-o-o-o-oho-Fluxus Poem

"-o-oho-o-o-o-oho-" : Visual and Fluxus poem by Litsa Spathi

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Sunday, June 15, 2008

Rail Track - Version 2 - Book by Litsa Spathi

Litsa's new book is available in two variations. This is the second version with a special designed cover that has a front and back side that are mirrorviews.
This book available at LuLu too:

Printed: 77 pages, 6" x 9", perfect binding, black and white interior ink

Rail Track - Variation 2 has the same content as the first edition. It contains Visual Poetry and Fluxus Performance by Litsa Spathi. A Journey from Breda to Munich that is presented in a visual way. Only the cover is different.

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Saturday, June 14, 2008

Rail Track - visual Poesie & Fluxus Performance

New Cover for the Rail Track Second Edition

...das Cover bei der First Edition ist eins von Lulu selbst.Wenn man ein eigenes liefert, so muss die Resolution sehr hoch sein und zunaechst streikte mein Computer. Aber ich gab nicht auf.
Mit diesem Cover hier bei der Second Edition von Rail Track spiele ich mit den Empfindlichkeiten der offiziellen Kunstszene.Darum noArt auf dem Cover, wobei die Betonung auf Art gelegt ist.
Wichtig war es mir, selbst das Cover digital zu gestalten, da auch das visuelle poem Rail Track auch vollkommen digital ertellt wurde. So ist es komplett ein digitales Produkt und auch (er-)Zeugnis unserer Zeit...

Litsa Spathi

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Rail Track

Litsa Spathi published her book "Rail Track" - Visual Poetry and Fluxus Performance, which is now available at LuLu through the folowing link:


A Journey from Breda to Munich described in a visual way.

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Sunday, June 08, 2008

Conceptual Poetics

Conceptual Poetics: An Editorial Pause by Kenneth Goldsmith

On a recent radio interview, Language poet Bruce Andrews talked about how, back in the early 70s, using a paper cutter radically changed his work, breaking up his writing into a modular process. It was the correct response for the time. Today, we have immense information moving capabilities at our fingertips and new movements like Conceptual Writing or Flarf are the correct responses for our time. If writing is not taking these new conditions into its poetics, it simply cannot be considered contemporary. If nothing else, what the Conceptual Poetry and Its Others conference did was codify this tendency for the record.

The other significant notion that emerged from the conference was that conceptual poetics is a many-headed monster, showing itself wildly adaptable to a wide variety of interests and agendas, the baseline of the practices being floated by technology. In a sense, what the conference did was to bring the field of poetics up to date and in line with other art forms and long-established cultural trends. Words like "sampling," "appropriation," "cut-and-paste," "mixing" and "remixing" were in constant use as were frequent references to technology, globalization and multi-lingualism. The papers and discussions were very much focused on the concept of poetry off the page, bleeding into galleries, performances, sound installation, on the airwaves, interventionist strategies, websites and blogs, all of these not being the traditional spaces where poetry happens. Yet all the poets got up and "read," and all have published numerous books. Conceptual poetry is a poetry that, in fact, knows no bounds; in this, its wildly contemporary. As respondent Brian Reed put it, "Genres don't evolve, they get more confused over time." Reed claimed that the poet is now a post-production studio, enabling new notions of collaboration fueled by distributed agencies and sites of production.

During one of the discussions, an audience member queried one of the panelists on the use of the term "avant-garde," a term that the audience member claimed was retrograde. The respondents countered this claim by saying that perhaps a reclamation of the avant-garde was possible as the interdisciplinary spaces reintroduced by technology made it possible for poetry to inhabit them comfortably; where poetry meets technology, its hard to keep poetry in its box as only "poetry" and only "poetry."

Notions of what constitutes subjectivity were discussed. Following my theory of "unboring boring," Marie Smart introduced the idea of "unsubjective subjectivity," as a reversal of the creative process. Rather than perceive this as a negation, Smart suggested that we think of this as a "canned subjectivity." In conceptual writing, choices are made by the writer, denying its machine-like tendencies, suggesting instead a non-robotic unsubjective subjectivity. Most everyone agreed that subjectivity is impossible to erase in this writing. Similarly, Jesper Olsson of Sweden's OEI magazine introduced the idea of an "editorial poetics," claiming that the actions of massive tendencies these days toward archiving could, in itself be construed as a poetic act.
Translation and multi-lingualism were frequently discussed topics. Several of the respondents claimed that the act of translation and moving between languages could be construed as a forms and methods of conceptual writing. Both Charles Alexander and Jonathan Stalling cited procedural and conceptual ancient Chinese poetry as antecedents to current conceptual practices.

Laynie Brown had audience members read the results of her survey asking dozens of women what they thought conceptual poetry was. The results were varied and claimed up a heretofore absent space for a feminist conceptual poetics. Vanessa Place, in her respondent paper, read such a text -- conceptual, procedural and bodily -- instructions on how to insert a tampon. Place and Rob Fitterman both proposed that a genre of post-conceptual poetics was already in place, allowing for more explicit political agendas as well as an opening up conceptual poetics to an absorption of more conventional formal and subjective tropes.

Throughout the weekend, hundreds of audience members, panelists and respondents were in accord as to the general principles of conceptual poetics. Only one respondent, Graca Capinha, expressed contempt for the genre, claiming that words shouldn't be made into "objects" or "commodities" for a hungry market, something she felt was swiftly happening. She lamented the fact that these writers have not made active political change as poets in Portugal (her country) did during the dictatorship where they were instrumental in change. She refuted the idea of an "unsubjective subjectivity," suggesting that by abandoning subjectivity, poetry was in danger of losing its function.

The last notes of the conference were sounded by various audience members who suggested that conceptual poetics is a contemporary way of writing that can be adopted almost any variant. Christian Bök seconded that notion by saying that the genre has evolved from something invented by three guys drinking beer in a bar in Buffalo a decade ago to widespread way of writing poetry today, reiterating that conceptual poetics is, in fact, the right poetry for the right time.

Source:Conceptual Poetics: An Editorial Pause by Kenneth Goldsmith
Poetry Foundation - Harriet: a blog from the Poetry Foundation

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Richard Kooyman - Writing on Art

Letter to Students June 8, 2008

What makes a good landscape painting? What are we trying to do out here in the sun and wind? What is it we are trying to capture with paint? What makes a painting beautiful? These questions and more define the landscape painters quest. Hans Hoffman in one of his famous classes summarized the problem by saying, “The artists technical problem is how to transform the material with which he works back into the sphere of the spirit” The most interesting word of that statement is ‘transform’. The focus is on transformation. What he is talking about here is poetry. Visual poetry. Technique is only the important first half of “the picture.” Frederick Von Schelling the 18th century philosopher said that art is made by two processes.

“ Art is brought to completion by two thoroughly different activities…one part of art,namely, the part that is practiced with consciousness, deliberation ,and reflection, which can also be taught and learned..on the other hand, we must seek in the unconscious,which also enters into art,for that in art that cannot be learned, cannot be attained by practice or in any other way, but can only be inborn by the free gift of nature, and which is what we may call in one word the poetry in art”

How do we combine the two processes? After we have studied the masters and watch the way our peers tackle certain problems there comes a time where we have to add something of ourselves into the equation. We have to add our own poetry to the mix. Easier said than done in a world where poetry is hardly ever taught.

That is not to say you just willy nilly start slopping paint around hoping that its being controlled by some inner poetic genie. The American Painter Wolf Kahn early on in his career said

“ ..accidental process are often superior to willed ones, but the framework in which one works is formal intentionality”. We have to be intentional in what we do. We have to use our experience and our technical knowledge but at the same time stay open to what is happening on the canvas that our conscious mind hasn’t intended. This is the door to the poetic. Think of it as a part of your subconsciousness. That little voice that so often gets shoved aside. Ask yourself often while painting,”What mark is this brush I have in my hand making?” Is there something great happening on the painting that you hadn’t planned on? This is why I love using brushes that really seem bigger than they should be for the job. You just never know what its going to do. It makes you not expect everything you are doing. The act of painting is a relationship, a dance between what you are thinking that you’d like to see happen and what does happen. Be direct in your intentions but leave the window open to the unexpected. The unexpected is also what makes oil paining so wonderfully special. Oil paint can stain a canvas. It leaves tracks where the artists has been and what he/she has changed and gone over with a new idea or passage. Oil paint drips, smudges, runs ,bleeds into the color next to it on the surface. It can be gone over with a heavier thicker coat of a different color or veiled with a wash of transparency. It lends itself to the unexpected. It can be a tool to the poetic.

Take the time to look at what is happening. Step back often from the canvas. Walk around it. Look at it from the side angles. Squint at it. Look away from the canvas and then sneak a quick look at it as you walk by it. This way you see things differently or what you might have missed when you are standing right in front of the canvas. The obvious is sometimes the most obscured. When you do see what you need to do, do it with conviction and great intention. Take that brush full of paint and make that mark. Make it like you mean it. And if its wrong don’t be afraid to change it. I can’t tell you how many times I have spent hours diddling around trying to carefully fix a little part of a problem on the canvas when in my heart I knew what I should do is grab a big rag, wipe it off and start over. Better to start fresh and build on what you now know what not to do.

Don’t put off the hard parts till later. If possible do them first. The painter Fairfield Porter said, “I made the mistake of thinking that I could do everything later instead of at the beginning.” Each painting is a record of a moment, a time and a place. What and how you do something is recorded on the canvas for that moment of time.

Don’t get buried in the details. Try not to get too caught up in all the descriptive incidentals of the scene. You don’t need to paint every leaf of the tree. we tend not to even see them in real life anyway. Instead focus on the shape of the tree. Its better to be suggestive than too descriptive. Its more poetic to be connotative(suggestive) than denotative(specific).

No one can really teach you how to paint. They can teach you how they paint but whats the point in that? We can talk about art, the reason for making it, the different styles of art and how others make art, but each person contains their own seed for making original wonderful art. Its that seed you really want to work at. The ways may be individually many and seem confusing in scope at times but there are great possibilities. I think it was Jim Harrison who said that “Life is short but wide”.

So how does one become a good painter? The million dollar question. I think it takes two simple things. The first is that you have to align yourself with what good painting is really about. Its not about making decoration. Its not about recording what is in front of you like a camera would record it. Painting is an act, like in”action”. The result of your action,(what color went first, which big or small sized tools did you use, what did you leave out, what did you put in) is the painting. If your action is hesitant,fearful, confused, you are going to produce a painting that has those qualities. If you paint willfully and boldly you going to produce that type of paintings.

I’m not saying you should paint like me. All of the painters I mention above are very different in STYLE of painting but they all share what it is that makes a good painting.

The second thing you have to do is paint. It’s as simple as that. You have to make a place for your work ,a studio or extra room, where you can treat painting seriously and then…paint. Look at painters, buy books, go to exhibitions, museums, immerse yourself in the art world. Its an educational quest just like learning a new language. You are learning the language of paint. You have to invest your time to learn anything in the world. Painting is no different. And if you do invest the time, create a space for your art in your life not only can it be rewarding it can be your livelihood. It can be your life.

Source: Richard Kooyman 2007

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Friday, June 06, 2008

Fluxus Post poem to "lies"

Fluxus Post poem to "lies": visual & Fluxus Poem by Litsa Spathi

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Wednesday, June 04, 2008

Fluxus Memories (1)

Instant performance: L. Kerekes meets Alison Knowles & Dick Higgins, Omi / New York / July, 1997


Fluxus AAAA

"Fluxus AAAA": visual & Fluxus Poem by Litsa Spathi

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Fluxus Oxid

"OXID":Visual @fluxus poem by Litsa Spathi

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Tuesday, June 03, 2008

Finnegans Wake & Sorrow Pillow

Finnegans Wake & Sorrow Pillow - visual & Fluxus poem by Litsa Spathi

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Sunday, June 01, 2008

Help Needed

I need some help with definitions from you. I call the above a Fluxus Poem or Visual Poem.

Someone told me though that it is Mail-Art. The question is simple: "What would YOU call this?". Please leave a comment and an explenation.

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