Writing as a Plastic Art
Can we think of writing as a plastic art? Does the sentence enact a type of architecture, one that wholly immerses the reader? Can poetry attune to the reader, linking hir nervous system to the author’s, even if long dead?
I am interested in thinking about a (queer) somatic writing practice where language can be thought through clay: where plasticity, texture, contour, and spatial command become three-dimensional features of a written text. By theorizing poetics via ceramics, I hope to discuss how syntax, cadence, and tone act as visceral appendages, ones that have the potential to embrace the reader in a non-cognitive, anti-capitalist, sensuous exchange: an embodiment of the author hirself. This presentation will occur in an art studio—or we will create an art studio together, wherever we are—equipped with a piece of clay at each audience member’s seat: to work and mold as I talk. Each participant’s plastic art will become a point of departure for continuing conversation.
Topics, research, and theories discussed will consist of: Queer Phenomenology (Sara Ahmed); The Uprising: On Poetry and Finance (Bifo Berardi); The Matter of Capital (Christopher Nealon); Music for Porn (Rob Halpern); the works of Melissa Buzzeo and Bhanu Kapil; Interaction of Color (Josef Albers); Feeling and Form (Suzanne Langer); Habeus Viscus (Alexander Weheliye) theories of biopolitics by Foucault; architectural writings of Arakawa and Gins; anthropological writings of Ellen Dissanayake. And more.
Valuing visceral exchange over cognitive knowledge, this presentation/workshop would take the tone and form of a meditative reading: an immersion in “architextural space.”