On Thursday 15th March we welcomed Allen Fisher to Reid Hall as part of our Thursday lecture series. This was our first event featuring readings in both English and French. Allen Fisher began the evening with a conference, Decoherence Aesthetics. This was followed by readings from his work in English and we were also pleased to welcome Jean-Charles Depaule, who gave readings in French. Olivier Brossard, from l’Université Paris Est Marne-la-Vallée, read the translations.
This evening was organised as part of our Thursday lecture series, in conjunction with the group Poets & Critics and with the support of l’Institut Universitaire de France.
Born in London in 1944, Fisher is a poet, painter, publisher, teacher and performer. He has exhibited widely and has work in the Tate collection, King’s College Archive, Living Museum Iceland, and Hereford Museum. He participated as poet, performer and installation artist with the English Fluxus group in the 1970s. He started professional work as a painter in 1978. After twenty years in lead and plastics industries he started teaching art, art history and poetry at Goldsmiths’ College in the eighties. He started work at Herefordshire College of Art & Design in 1989 and in 1998 became Head of Art at Roehampton University. In 2002 he was appointed as Professor of Poetry & Art and in 2005 became Head of Contemporary Arts at Manchester Metropolitan University, where he is Emeritus Professor of Poetry and Art.
Last year saw a reprint of his volume PLACE and the publication of the collected Gravity as a consequence of shape, from Reality Street and a collection of essays, Imperfect Fit,published by University of Alabama.
Jean-Charles Depaule was born in Toulon in 1945. After spending his childhood in Nîmes and Paris, he lived in Cairo and Marseille before settling in Paris again. An urban anthropologist as well as a poet, Jean Charles Depaule taught at the School of Architecture of Versailles before pursuing his research on the spaces of the Eastern Arab world and on the words of urban life at the Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique (CNRS). Besides his writing practices as scholar and poet, Depaule is also an artist who works with 2 or 3D images.
Jean-Charles Depaule has explored and practiced decasyllabic and irregular lines, quatrains, and sestina writing. He has also been working on translations, descriptions and portraits. He wrote several essays on what he calls the labor of poetry (on such topics as diverse as the new generation of French poets at the end of the 1990s, contemporary Arabic poetry, sound poetry, Charles Olson, Francis Ponge, Emmanuel Hocquard…)
A former member of the editorial board of the poetry journals Action poétique and If, he was also an editor of the art history and anthropology journal Gradhiva. A co-founder ofIrrégulomadaire (a journal exploring the relationships between text and image), he is a regular contributor to CCP, Cahier Critique de Poésie.