Thursday, March 3

A chaos of feelings

"Poetry remembers that it was an oral art before it was a written art." ~Jorge-Luis Borges

I've just discovered the work of Arthur Pétronio, an Italian avant-gardist from the early 20th century who strove to find that liminal space where poetry and music, voice and instrument, meet.

"He shared in the World War I era avant-garde fascination with sound poetry, visual poetry and the music of ambient sounds, and under the influence of Wassily Kandinsky and Henri Le Fauconnier developed in 1919 a verbophonic theory for incorporating vowel sounds as elements of a musical score. He also founded several magazines that investigated connections among the arts, including La Revue de Feu, and Créer. Throughout the 1920s, Créer served as an important forum for a diverse group that included Le Corbusier, Jean Cocteau, Pablo Picasso, E.L.T. Mesens, and others interested in the fusion of word, image, and sound into the creation of a total language." 

Pétronio drew from a varied set of experts in order to synthesize this utopian intersection of sound/image/text, using a research practice that seems to have investigated the integration of similarities and differences in each practice.  Among Petronio's most admired verbophonic works are Tellurgie (1964) and Cosmosmose (1968) (which you can hear on ubuweb's page for him.)

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