jueves, marzo 30, 2006

Some on Ultraism

I initially posted a comment in response to Liz Henry, who has been responding to my promises of writing about the Ultraists and Creacionists of Spain and Latin America. Thanks! Liz, are going to make me stay on track, I know it. I feel it. I've been distracted by Dada, and classes that keep coming....

This could interest others, so let me send you,quite honestly, a freewrite of my thoughts. Hold on, ya'll.

Around 1918, at the onset on ultraism in Spain, before it later expanded to Argentina when Borges moved back, the group comprised of others such as Guillermo de Torre, Rafael Cansinos-Assens, Gerardo Diego, Juan Larrea, etc. (ladies?) and they wanted an avant-guard movement distinct from the others, a movement for the Spanish-speaking world. They had the need to react against the modernism of Ruben Dario of Nicaragua--a particular history to which they wanted to respond. The magazines that heralded Ultraismo were called "Nosotros" or "Ultra" between the timespan of 1918-1922.

Creacionism is often considered the first Latin American avant-guard movement since it began in 1912. When Vicente Huidobro from Chile showed up on the scene in Madrid, he was en route from Paris, and I believe the Ultraists thought his ideas were "tainted" by those foreign influences. Or, at least, Borges was quite militant about his reactions at the time, which he later denounced. People such as Guillermo de Torre were likely less interested in such critical distinctions. Huidobro would often be a part of these literary conversation circles at Madrid's Cafe Colonial, and it seems that Huidobro "recruited" people to creacionism by the nature of his exuberance. Some left the ultraist movement, so to speak, for creacionism. They would write creacionist poems. (Later I could talk about some of the publications, and possibly some of the aesthetics differences--but that's almost suicidal when they are so difficult to name. The question being: What does it mean to change from an ultraist aesthetic to a creacionist one?)

Yes, these distinctions between movements are so slippery. At the same time that Borges was trying to make these distinctions, he was drawing upon the work of Apollinaire or Mallarme. And, as do many manifestos, ultraism embraced many other writers prior to the naming of this movement.

(To me, the study of manifestos can be one big psychological study of the literary psyche...but that's another topic.) I will later post some sources too. And of course, you are welcome to add your information. I think this is really a collective building of knowledge.



miércoles, marzo 22, 2006


I don’t want to write about my feelings
I don’t want to write the books I just read
A wad of them

I do want to post some quotes
but I don’t want to type them
I don’t want to type

I don’t want to keep track of blogrolls
I don’t want to appear any way
So I don't appear

That's the problem--the crisis of imagined identity

I don’t want to figure out how to fix this template.

That being said, I've been reading a lot of dada: Duchamp, Tzara, The Baroness, Mina Loy, Breton (who split from Dada and stirred up Surrealism)

Have you ever checked out the "International Dada Archive"?