Charles Bernstein

Elementary processes in poetry / redefining the field: Vlado Martek & Croatian conceptual poetry 1970s to now

by Dubravka Djurić

(1996)
(1996)

Vlado Martek was born in 1951 in Zagreb. He graduated from the University of Zagreb, major in Literature and Philosophy. From 1975 until 1978 he was a member of informal Group of Six Authors, and had shown exhibitions-actions with them and initiated the magazine-catalogue Maj 75 (May 75). He has shown his work in a number of solo exhibitions. By vocation Martek has been a (pre)poet and multimedia nomadic author. His work includes actions, agitations, ambiences, murals, poetry, texts on his own work (metatheory),texts on other artists (metareview), graffiti, land art, graphics, painting, author's books, sculpture, poetry, and objects. Since 1979 he has been working in a public library. 

In this text I would like to speak about Vlado Martek primarily as a poet. This may seem questionable, because it might cause the impression that his varied and comprehensive oeuvre is in this way reduced to just one field. However, it is important to speak about Martek as a poet, because in this way the radical imperative of defining the field of poetry is imposed upon us. In order to attempt to do that, I must first briefly outline the institutional field of literature, and within that, the field of poetry in the context of the influence that cultural studies have had on the study of literature.

Buffalo Poetics Program's 20th anniversary

Robert Creeley and Susan Howe with me at 438 Clemens Hall in December 1992; Susa
Robert Creeley and Susan Howe with me at 438 Clemens Hall in December 1992; Susan Bee’s painting in the background.

Robert Creeley, Susan Howe, Dennis Tedlock, Raymond Federman, and I (working with Robert Bertholf in the poetry collection) started the SUNY-Buffalo Poetics Program 2o years ago. Our founding moment was more an act of will and imagination than a bureaucratic act; we came into existence by declaring ourselves a program.

Joel Kuszai on Close Listening

© Bernstein/PennSound 2011
© Bernstein/PennSound 2011

Appearing on Close Listening with Charles Bernstein, September 12, 2011

Program One: Reading from Accidency

  • complete reading (24:55): MP3

Program Two: Conversation

  • complete conversation (43:19): MP3

Ted Greenwald: In conversation on Close Listening

photo © 2007 Charles Bernstein/PennSound
photo © 2007 Charles Bernstein/PennSound
Close Listening

Program 2:  (37:13) MP3
recorded Sept. 12, 2011
Greenwald talks to Charles Bernstein about being a young poet from Queens in the 1960s, how the mind takes orders from the brain, the relation of the art world to the poetry world, and about revisions, form, style, and vernacular practice.

George Kuchar (1942-2011 )

Portrait of George Kuchar by Mimi Gross.

George Kuchar was one of the most creative, original, and influential filmmakers, straddling between two generations of North American iconoclasts, including Stan Brakhage, Ken Jacobs, Rudy Burckhardt, Kenneth Anger, Michael Snow, Warren Sonbert, Ernie Gehr, Abigail Child, and Henry Hills. Often collaborating with his twin brother, Mike, the Kuchars started making films as Bronx teenagers and these early films already show the ingenuity, exuberance, and do-it-yourself charm that they would keep over their scores of subsequent films.