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Winter 2011 / 3.13

Manifestos Now!

Preface: Manifesto, Unremitting
Rise Above History: A Manifesto for More Manifestos
Flarf, Arf, Arf, Arf!
manifesto of the provisional avant-garde
The Georgia Straight
Plains and Straights: On the Founding Manifesto of the Georgia Straight
Dear Brian, and Verb List Compilations 1967-8 & 2010
Poetry & Unanimous Feelings (translated by Louis Cabri)
Maxims for Assisting Afghanistan
TiC PoP PoP TiC: The Timeless Pupil of the Eye
Revolutionary Critical Pedagogy for a Socialist Society: A Manifesto
What Do Downtown Eastsiders Want?
A Manifesto for Triplicity
Pluralist Music Composition, a Manifesto
Givenness and the Word of the Creature
Of Language: A Lesson from Brother So-and-So
The Long Moment
26 Statements on poetry
Return to Spectacle: A Cinemanifesto
"Our Bodies Feel Struggle": Loving / Hating the Symptom In Tiqqun and The Invisible Committee
A Capillary Manifesto
A Rhythm Party Manifesto (translated by Lisa Robertson and Avra Spector)
"Freedom of Chickens" Manifesto
Manifesto to Contest the Manifesto Contest
COVER: Super Students #1, "The Board's action showed more concern about our image than the rights and academic freedom on which this university was founded" (Student society president Stan Wong, March 1967), 2010


Anything that might be said about the Alberta Research Group (ARG) up to now can be found in the ARG’s “Manifesto to Contest the Manifesto Contest.” Otherwise, their mission is simple: raise four billion dollars. Exactly how they will achieve this is being explored right now at <albertaresearchgroup.wordpress.com>. ARG!

Greg Bachar lives in Seattle.

derek beaulieu is the author of five books of poetry (most recently the visual poem suite silence), two volumes of conceptual fiction (most recently the short fiction collection How to Write) and over 150 chapbooks. He is the publisher of small presses housepress (1997-2004) and no press (2005-present), and the editor of several small magazines in Canada. Seen of the Crime, forthcoming from Snare, is a collection of criticism on contemporary poetry and poetics. beaulieu has performed his work at festivals and universities across Canada, the US, and Europe.

Gregory Betts is the author of four books of poetry, and the editor of four books of early Canadian experimental writing. His “plunderverse” epic, The Others Raisd in Me (Pedlar Press 2009), was a finalist for the ReLit Award 2010, and he is the 2010 recipient of the International Journal of Canadian Studies’s Jean-Michel Lacroix Award for the best article on a Canadian subject. Betts recently completed a literary history of early Canadian avant-gardism. He teaches literature at Brock University in St. Catharines, Ontario.

Sabine Bitter and Helmut Weber, Vienna and Vancouver-based artists, work on projects addressing cities, architecture, and the politics of representation and of space. Their series of photo- and video-works like University Paradox (2010), Plugged In/ Fenced Out (2008), and their projects for Differentiated Neighborhoods of New Belgrade (2007) engage with specific moments and logics of global-urban change as they take shape in neighborhoods, architecture, and everyday life. Shows in 2010 include “Critical Complicity” at Kunsthalle Exnergasse Wien, Vienna and “Learning from Vancouver” with Urban Subjects and Bik van der Pol, Western Front, Vancouver. Upcoming shows in 2011 include “We: Vancouver,” Vancouver Art Gallery; “Communitas, Die unrepräsentierbare Gemeinschaft,” Camera Austria, Graz; and “Where the World Was: Cities after Mega-events,” Charles H. Scott Gallery, Vancouver. <http://www.lot.at>

Christian Bök is the author of Crystallography (Coach House 1994), a pataphysical encyclopedia nominated for the Gerald Lampert Memorial Award, and of Eunoia (Coach House 2001), a bestselling work of experimental literature, which won the Griffin Prize for Poetic Excellence in 2002. Bök has created artificial languages for two television shows, Gene Roddenberry’s Earth: Final Conflict and Peter Benchley’s Amazon, and is also known for his virtuoso performances of sound poetry, particularly the Ursonate by Kurt Schwitters. His conceptual artworks, which include books built out of Rubik’s cubes and Lego bricks, have appeared at the Marianne Boesky Gallery in New York City as part of the exhibit Poetry Plastique (2001). Bök teaches English at the University of Calgary.

Colin Browne’s latest project concerns the surréaliste fascination with Northwest coast and Alaskan masks and ceremonial objects, and with the vision of a world re-enchanted. André Breton, master of the manifesto and theorizer of the “Great Transparents,” was an avid collector of the masks of the North Pacific. Browne has been working on a film, “Scavengers of Paradise,” and a preliminary text will appear in the summer of 2011. His new book of poetry, Vestle, is nearing completion. He recently gave a talk at MOA in Vancouver on the subject of Man Ray’s films.

Margot Leigh Butler is an artist, educator, activist, and cultural theorist. She’s been involved with the Humanities 101 Community Programme (Hum) for 10 years, first as a teacher and, for the past five years, as Academic Director. Thanks to Hum’s students, alumni, and Steering Committee members—some of their manifestos which are in this issue will be in the Vancouver Art Gallery’s exhibit “WE: Vancouver - 12 Manifestos for the City,” from February to May 2011—and staff Paul Woodhouse, Alison Rajah, Greg Scutt, Julian Weideman, and Chris Hiebert; John Vigna, Janet Giltrow, Sue Pell, Glen Coulthard; CCAP (Carnegie Community Action Project) and the DNC (Downtown Eastside Neighbourhood Council); and the ‘sisters’ in Hum’s Canadian sister programmes.

Louis Cabri’s Poetryworld is forthcoming from CUE. His recent poetry chapbooks are —that can’t (Nomados) and What Is Venice? (Wrinkle). The first part of an essay on poetic influence, the New York School, and Australian poet Ken Bolton appears online in Jacket 40. He is organizing a symposium on Ron Silliman’s long poem The Alphabet, 25-26 March 2011 in Windsor, Ontario, where he teaches at the University of Windsor.

Amanda Dawn Christie is an interdisciplinary artist working in film, contemporary dance, photography, electronics, and electroacoustics. Amanda teaches, publishes, and serves on boards of various artist run centres and on juries across Canada. She maintains an active art practice and currently works as the director of the Galerie Sans Nom, in Moncton, New Brunswick.

Pierre Coupey was a founding co-editor of The Georgia Straight and the founding editor of The Capilano Review. He has published nine books of poetry, chapbooks and catalogues, and exhibited his art work in Montreal, Toronto, Calgary, Vancouver, Seattle, Portland, Dublin, Nagoya and Tokyo. His most recent solo show, Between Memory and Perception, was held in Fall 2010 at Gallery Jones. In 2011 his work will be included in a five-person show on abstraction, The Point Is, at the Kelowna Art Gallery, and in 2012, it will be the subject of a three-decade survey at the Art Gallery in the Evergreen Cultural Centre. Pierre is represented by Gallery Jones in Vancouver.

Frank Davey’s most recent poetry book is Bardy Google (Talonbooks 2010). Fifty years ago he was a founding editor of Tish, about which he has just written the tell-almost-all memoir When Tish Happens, to be released by ECW Press in April 2011. He is currently working on a biography of bpNichol, and the Afghanistan poetcard-poem sequence from which this issue’s selection is taken.

Jeff Derksen works at Simon Fraser University. His books of poetry include Down Time, Dwell, and Transnational Muscle Cars as well as a book of essays Annihilated Time: poetry and other politics (all from Talonbooks). His essays on art and urbanism in the long neoliberal moment, After Euphoria (JRP Ringier), is forthcoming, as is a collaborative book (Urban Subjects, Bik Van der Pol, Alissa Firth-Eagland) on the politics of moments and mega-events, entitled Momentarily: Learning from Mega-events.

Brian Ganter teaches in the English Department and is convenor of the CultureNet program at Capilano University; he is finishing his PhD in Literature at the University of Washington, Seattle. He has written and directed several short narrative and documentary films and videos. His latest feature film Metropole (2008) has screened in London at the British Museum, as well as in Italy, Vancouver, Victoria, and Seattle.

Hadley+Maxwell have been collaborating since they met in Vancouver, in 1997, working in a variety of media including video, installation, and sound. Stemming from their commitment to collaboration, their work examines mediation as the threshold of intelligibility between the individual and the social. In the past year their work has been included in exhibitions at the Contemporary Art Gallery, Vancouver; Seattle Art Museum; the Québec City Biennale; and Kunsthalle Mulhouse, France. Solo exhibitions were held at Kunstverein Göttingen, SMART Project Space, Amsterdam; Samsa, Berlin; and YYZ, Toronto. Hadley+Maxwell are based in Berlin and are represented by Jessica Bradley Art + Projects in Toronto.

Oliver Hockenhull is a media artist, writer, and theorist who has exhibited widely, from small avant-garde venues to the Museum of Modern Art, New York; the Centre de Cultura Contemporània de Barcelona; MIT, Boston; the International Documentary Film Festival of Amsterdam; the Nouveau Cinema Festival of Montreal; the Sao Paulo International Film Festival; and others. His writings have appeared in FUSE, POV, Postmodern Culture, and others. Damp: Contemporary Vancouver Media Arts (Anvil 2008) was co-edited with Alex MacKenzie. His most recent film premiered at the Seoul International New Media Festival 2010. <shinynewfilms.com> <neuronirvana.net>

Crystal Hurdle teaches Creative Writing and English at Capilano University. In October 2007, she was Guest Poet at the International Sylvia Plath Symposium at the University of Oxford reading from After Ted & Sylvia: Poems (Ronsdale 2003). Crystal’s poetry and prose has been published widely in anthologies and journals, including Canadian Literature, Fireweed, The Dalhousie Review, and The Capilano Review, where she is a board member.

Reg Johanson is the co-author, with Roger Farr and Aaron Vidaver, of N 49 19. 47 – W 123 8. 11 (PILLS 2008) and the author of Courage, My Love (Line Books 2006). Writing and critical work has appeared in W, XCP: Cross-Cultural Poetics, West Coast Line, The Capilano Review, The Poetic Front, and Capitalism Nature Socialism, among others. He is currently editing a collection of Marie Annharte Baker’s critical writing. He teaches at Capilano University in North Vancouver, Coast Salish Territory.

Alex MacKenzie is an experimental film artist working primarily with relic analog film equipment and hand processed imagery. He creates works of expanded cinema, light projection installation, and projector performance. His work has screened at the Rotterdam International Film Festival, the EXiS Experimental Film Festival in Seoul, Lightcone in Paris, Kino Arsenal in Berlin, and others. Alex co-edited Damp: Contemporary Vancouver Media Art (Anvil 2008) and interviewed David Rimmer for Loop, Print, Fade + Flicker: David Rimmer’s Moving Images (Anvil 2009). <www.alexmackenzie.ca>

British-born and long-time Canadian resident, Steve McCaffery is author of more than twenty-five books of poetry and criticism, most recently Panel III of Carnival and Verse and Worse: Selected Poems 1989-2009. His next book of criticism on Time, Metalepsis, Architecture and Poetry will be published through the University of Alabama Press. He is David Gray Professor of Poetry and Letters at the University at Buffalo where he teaches Critical Theory, Philosophy, and Poetics in the Poetics Program.

Peter McLaren, Canadian scholar and writer, is Professor of Urban Education, Graduate School of Education and Information Studies, University of California, Los Angeles. He is the editor and author of 45 books. His writings have been translated into 20 languages.

Kim Minkus is a PhD candidate in the English department at Simon Fraser University and a poet with two books of poetry, 9 Freight (LINEbooks 2007) and Thresh (Snare 2009). She has had reviews, poetry, and fiction published in Open Letter, dusie, FRONT, Interim, West Coast Line, The Poetic Front, LOCUSPOINT, ottawater, Memewar, and Jacket. Her academic research focuses on contemporary poetry, feminist poetry, and the archive. Kim teaches at Capilano University.

Henri Meschonnic, born in Paris in 1932, is author of over sixty books. A professor of linguistics at Université de Paris VIII from 1969-1997, Meschonnic’s work pushes toward a radical critique and opening up of a theory of rhythm as a political poetics which refuses the operative directives of enclosed systems of thought and meter. Among his most noted publications are Les Cinq Rouleaux—Le chant des chants, Ruth, Comme ou Les Lamentations, Paroles du Sage, Esther: the 5 books of the Old Testament—(Gallimard 1970), Pour la poétique (Gallimard 1970), Critique du rhythme, Anthropologie historique du langage (Verdier 1982), and a collection of essays, Dans la bois de la langue (Laurence Teper 2008). Meschonnic died in Villejuif, France in 2009.

Aspiring to the status of a common noun, the provisional avant-garde (provag) renounces its signature. Nevertheless, provag welcomes any and all forms of resignations in writing. In that regard, the responsibility of first resigner belongs properly to Robert Majzels, who resides in Tailingspond, Alberta.

Participants in Humanities 101 Writing Course: Writing is one of three free university level courses for DTES/South residents offered by the Humanities 101 Community Programme at the UBC campus, along with free alumni-led weekend Public Programmes at Carnegie Centre, The Gathering Place, and sometimes the Downtown Eastside Women’s Centre. <hum101@interchange.ubc.ca>, http://humanities101.arts.ubc.ca.

Nikki Reimer, poet and artist, is the author of [sic] (Frontenac House 2010) and fist things first (Wrinkle Press Chapbook 2009), and the editor of Van City Kitty on VancouverisAwesome.com. Recent work has appeared or is forthcoming in Uppercase Magazine, Prism International, Poetry is Dead, and Dandelion. She is interested in inter-disciplinary practice, publishing, mental health issues, animal rights, and contemporary poetics.

Lisa Robertson and Avra Spector began meeting and thinking together at California College of the Arts in San Francisco in 2007. Now they undertake their translation projects over Skype, most recently from Dublin and Vancouver, respectively. As well as continuing with the work of Meschonnic, they are engaged in translation and discussion of Emile Benveniste (and his exploration of language as intersubjective dynamics), (and his recognition of the phrase as a social space which unties the subject from the individual), (and his analysis and historical description of the condition of intersubjectivity in language).

Jules Romains (1885-1972), nom de plume of Louis Farigoule, was a poet, playwright, essayist, critic, and novelist. As a young university student, Romains wrote the manifesto “Poetry and Unanimous Feelings” (translated here) and the book length poem La vie unanime. He was associated with a writers commune (the Abbaye de Créteil), and in contact with Gide, Apollinaire, Max Jacob, and cubist painter and theorist Albert Gleizes, among others. Romains’s once popular 27-volume novel, Les hommes de bonne volonté (published 1932-1946), begins in October 1908 on the day Austria announced its intentions to annex Bosnia-Herzegovina, which lead to WWI and ends in 1933. Romains lived in the USA during WWII; he returned to France in 1946. Some critics today consider Romains’s concept of unanimism to be as significant to early modernism as was futurism and cubism.

Sheila Ross teaches in the English Department at Capilano University. Her work on hermeneutics has appeared in Theory Culture & Society, Minerva Annual Online Journal of Philosophy, and Comitatus.

Marie-Hélène Tessier is a visual artist and writer based in Vancouver. Her work migrates freely between fiction, philosophy, and criticism, typically within the body of a single narrative. Adopting a critical paranoid method, her research explores the plasticity of text, as well as the spatial, temporal, and political qualities of language. The page is a battlefield exposing the self in a perpetual conflict with the world. She is currently writing her second novel.

Edward Top was born The Netherlands in 1972, lived and worked in London for seven years, and has now relocated to Vancouver. He has received commissions from the Schoenberg Ensemble, Holland Symfonia, Calefax, and the Birmingham Conservatoire, and his works are performed by Tokyo Sinfonietta, San Diego New Music, the Doelen String Quartet, and the Dutch Radio Kamer Filharmonie. In 2008 he was nominated for the Toonzetters Award for the best contemporary music in The Netherlands. He is currently working on commissions by the Raschèr Saxophone Quartet and the Doelen Ensemble in Rotterdam. 

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