Henri Chopin


En recuerdo a nuestro amigo y colega...

In memory of our friend and colleague...

(June 18, 1922 / January 3, 2008)

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El 3 de enero de 2008 falleció el artista francés Henri Chopin, quien ha sido uno de los más grandes e influyentes poetas sonoros de la historia. Experimentó sistemáticamente con la voz humana, usando micrófonos, amplificadores y cintas de grabación, tanto en vivo como en estudio, encontrando caminos de expresión que nadie había explorado antes de esa forma, y abriendo para la poesía espacios insospechados en el escenario, en sus grabaciones y en la genial revista OU, que dirigió entre 1964 y 1974.

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Henri, an avant-garde poet and musician

Henri Chopin was a little-known but key figure of the French avant-garde during the second half of the 20th century. Known primarily as a concrete and sound poet, he created a large body of pioneering recordings using early tape recorders, studio technologies and the sounds of the manipulated human voice. His emphasis on sound is a reminder that language stems as much from oral traditions as from classic literature, of the relationship of balance between order and chaos.

Chopin is significant above all for his diverse spread of creative achievement, as well as for his position as a focal point of contact for the international arts. As poet, painter, graphic artist and designer, typographer, independent publisher, film-maker, broadcaster and arts promoter, Chopin's work is a barometer of the shifts in European media between the 1950s and the 1970s.

His publication and design of the classic audio-visual magazines Cinquième Saison and OU between 1958 and 1974, each issue containing recordings as well as texts, images, screenprints and multiples, brought together international contemporary writers and artists such as members of Lettrisme and Fluxus, Jiri Kolar, Ian Hamilton Finlay, Tom Phillips, Brion Gysin, William S. Burroughs and many others, as well as bringing the work of survivors from earlier generations such as Raoul Hausmann and Marcel Janco to a fresh audience.