five manifests

five language manifests – and a poem

executed: 1975
classification: works on paper
object/work type: printed matter
material/technique: 30 pages with 5 texts published between 1966 and 1975 ('als elementen', 'the rationalist' manifest', 'eine offene sprache', 'my poetry is the world', 'this is poetry') and a page with a dried plant; the publication is completed with notes and a postscript in German and English + stamp and number */185
dimensions: 30.0 × 21.8 cm
signature and inscriptions: [title page (printed handwriting)] herman de vries / vijf manifesten over taal - / fünf manifeste über sprache – / five language manifests – / – en een gedicht. / und ein gedicht . / and a poem. / artists press bern 1975
edition: 185 copies, numbered + a special edition, numbered I-XV, with a photograph 'the poet in his poetry'
published by artists press : Bern 1975
current location:
collecting history:
comment: five language manifests - and a poem, appears to take on a sequence in the same genre [as on language (1972)] - CS], short texts on language in chronological order, followed by two blank pages. But this time the dried grass is taped to the last page. In truth, it is more of a supplementary page since it is in no way presented in the summary. It is the title of the book that identifies it and presents it as an addition: "- and a poem". What does this mean? A manifest reappears in this collection, first published in 1973, entitled my poetry is the world. It is the artist's most important manifest, contemplated since 1971. It is his definitive manifest, recapitulative, the one that henceforth would inspire his future work and be taken up in different ways. It says that it is not the poet who writes poetry but the world; that the poet is a poet not because he writes in a specific way, but because he is part of the world; that such poetry is therefore not limited to writing, that it is seen, read, eaten and even slept, 'every day'; in short, that poetry is life itself. consequently, an element taken from nature, such as the grass in this collection, is an extract of the poetic work of the world, and hence a natural 'poem', a living poem. In the postscript we read: "'poem' is only a word, but the grass is, as all from which it is part of".
[source Anne Moeglin-Delcroix, 'beyond language', in herman de vries. les livres & les publications : catalogue raisonné (centre des livres d'artistes/pays-paysage : saint-yrieix-la-perche 2005) 36]
photo/scan:
rights & reproduction: herman de vries
published references
catalogue raisonné herman de vries. les livres et les publications : catalogue raisonné (centre des livres d'artistes : Saint-Yrieix-la-Perche 2005) no images repr., catalogue number 29a-b.