MinXus Mail Bag: Readymade Asemics by Richard Canard (Carbondale, Illinois, USA)

Richard - 6.1.2015 - 1

Mail art by Richard Canard (Carbondale, Illinois, USA)

Riding yet another post-avant wave with characteristic adeptness, Richard Canard has donned his shades and made another foray into the realm of the readymade asemic (which is an eroded beach property that is becoming increasingly his personal territory due to squatter’s rights).

He sent us this (apparently) found material that is meant to be an approximation of ancient Egyptian hieroglyphics. We had to look it up, but we do confirm the reality of Ptahhotep’s instructions. Whether these hieroglyphs are accurate or legible would become a key question, were this readymade to be cast into the arena of asemic scrutiny. Minus the following paragraphs, we will avoid theoretical discussions and enjoy the mail art.

Right now there is a great deal of interest in asemic writing in both the Eternal Network and (often overlapping) visual poetry community. Most online discussions gravitate toward the question of what makes something asemic. As we have proposed in other venues, work that is “asemically correct” (that would satisfy the most hardcore purist) cannot be read or understood using conventional modes of reading; however, that does not exclude asemic writing from being expressive. These discussions can become heated and often involve dizzying definitions and complex qualifications involving the definitions.

A constant in asemic writing, though, is the requirement that the material have “no semantic content,” an idea we present via Michael Jacobson. Some sidestep the language issue by writing about “asemic art” or claiming asemic writing is a ruse and should be considered abstract art. Even more perspectives exist, but we have already expounded too long and too far on the subject.

Richard - 6.1.2015 - 2

We are very pleased to be able to add Richard Canard’s readymade asemics to the growing canon of asemic writing.


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