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Durham University

Institute of Advanced Study

Past Events

Professor Willard Bohn: Visual Poetry in France after Apollinaire

7th March 2008, 17:15 to 18:15, The Birley Room, Hatfield College

Dating from 1914, modern visual poetry was invented by F. T. Marinetti in Italy and Guillaume Apollinaire in France. This lecture will examine several of Apollinaire's successors, who practiced during the 1920s and 1930s and who were associated with Cubism, Dada, and Surrealism.

Visual poetry itself may be defined as poetry that is meant to be seen - presupposing a viewer as well as a reader. Although its roots extend back several millennia, it has become one of the hallmarks of our modern age. Professor Bohn is currently working on a book-length study to be entitled Reading Visual Poetry; conducting research on, and writing about, the dynamics involved in deciphering this fascinating genre, which has interested many modern poets.

Professor Willard Bohn is a well-known scholar, comparatist, and art historian at Illinois State University. He specializes in the study of avant-garde literature and art. He has lectured on numerous occasions at universities such as Oxford, Cambridge, the Sorbonne, Yale University, and UCLA. His publications include: The Aesthetics of Visual Poetry (1986, 1993), Modern Visual Poetry (2000), Apollinaire, Visual Poetry, and Art Criticism (1993), Apollinaire and the Faceless Man (1991), The Dada Market (1993), Apollinaire and the International Avant-Garde (1997), The Rise of Surrealism (2001), The Other Futurism (2004), and Marvelous Encounters: Surrealist Responses to Film, Art, Poetry, and Architecture (2005).

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