Artists Space

In Visible Architectures:

Alejandro Miguel Justino Crawford, Ian Hatcher & Sophia Le Fraga

October 16, 2015, 7pm

In Visible Architectures: Three Evenings of Performative Poetry Readings is a series of poetry readings focusing on performance programmed through three consecutive Fridays in October.

Friday, October 9, 7pm
Juliana Huxtable & LaTasha N. Nevada Diggs

Friday, October 16, 7pm
Alejandro Miguel Justino Crawford, Ian Hatcher & Sophia Le Fraga

Friday, October 23, 7pm
Whitney Claflin & Corina Copp (in collaboration with Tymberly Canale & Lanny Jordan Jackson)

Screenshot of an iPhone in the Messages app sending a text that reads, "all my life I
Sophia Le Fraga, W8ING 4, 2014. Video still. [Screenshot of an iPhone in the Messages app sending a text that reads, "all my life I've been like wtvr b reasonable" to a contact named "$OPH."]

“Performance is a bothersome word for writerly poets” writes poet Nathaniel Mackey in his essay “Sight-Specific, Sound-Specific…” from 2005. Despite twentieth century poetry’s rich tradition of performance, Mackey notes that in poetry there is often an expectation for words do the performing, as opposed to people or things. Yet, language exists beyond just words, and functions in tandem with images, gestures, bodies and technologies. In this series of readings, distinctions between the language of performance and the performance of language are blurred. Foregrounded are writerly poets who embrace images, gestures, bodies and technologies in the presentation of their poetry – as elements that don’t overshadow their poetics, but are embraced as part of its liveliness, and of reading as a social experience.

The series is structured via themes of sound, the body, technology, theater and comedy. These themes offer different formal histories for poets to explore the presentation of poetic language. Juliana Huxtable and LaTasha N. Nevada Diggs both experiment with the effects of audio distortion and sampling. Sophia Le Fraga, Ian Hatcher and Alejandro Miguel Justino Crawford all utilize different digital technologies to question the ground of their poetry. Whitney Claflin and Corina Copp present relational and formal theatrical environments from which their poetics unfold.

There is an invisible architecture often supporting
the surface of the poem, interrupting the progress of the poem. It reaches
into the poem
in search for an identity with the poem,
its object is to possess the poem for a brief time, even as an apparition appears.

– Barbara Guest in her poetic essay, “Invisible Architecture” (2000). In this she understands the formal and historical context of the poem as a material that contributes to its meaning – as both apart from and a part of poetic language. Reading functions similarly; it is not a neutral action, but contributes to the meaning of the text presented. In a moment when language and presentation of self alike are understood as multiple, and bound within wider, connected systems, performance becomes a means of making the “invisible architecture” of the poem visible, and activating it as a poetic material in itself.

Ian Hatcher is a writer, programmer, and sound artist whose work explores cognition in context of digital systems. He is the author of Prosthesis (Poor Claudia 2015) and The All-New (Anomalous 2015). With Amaranth Borsuk and Kate Durbin, he is co-creator of Abra, a conjoined analog (artist's book) + digital (iOS app) poetry instrument/spellbook. >>

Alejandro Miguel Justino Crawford is a poet, video artist, and game designer living in Brooklyn, NY.

Sophia Le Fraga is a poet and visual artist. She is the author of literallydead (2015); I RL, YOU RL (2013) and I DON'T WANT ANYTHING TO DO WITH THE INTERNET (2012), as well as the anti-plays W8ING 4 and TH3 B4LD 50PR4N0 (2014). Recent solo exhibitions include Other Titles at Büro Broken Dimanche; Berlin, Germany. Recent group exhibitions include Eugen Gomringer & (Bielefelder Kunstverein; Bielefeld, Germany), Itself Not So (Lisa Cooley; New York) and read the room / you’ve got to (SALTS; Basel, Switzerland). She is the poetry editor at Imperial Matters, a curator for the experimental reading series, Segue, and teaches poetry at BHQFU, New York's freest art school.