Mousse #88—Summer 2024

Mousse #88—Summer 2024

Mousse Magazine

John Giorno and Robert Rauschenberg kissing, New York, 1973. Courtesy: Giorno Poetry Systems Archive, New York.

June 6, 2024
Mousse #88—Summer 2024
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Dear readers, do you sometimes read poems? Then again, who says that poetry should (only) be read? Like John Giorno, we focus on the powers of the human voice, performed as spoken word, recorded, broadcasted, reverberated. Alexis Pauline Gumbs, in her upcoming biography of Audre Lorde, speaks of “survival poetics.” Poetics and politics cross paths, as we hope our pages will likewise do.

Survey: John Giorno
Words, Sound, Wisdom
“When you call any of the still-active versions of Dial-A-Poem today, you hear a pregnant pause. Then there is John Giorno, the maestro and ringleader, with … his distinctive accent and charisma.” Alison Coplan explores how John Giorno (1936–2019) sought to experiment with interdisciplinary ways for poets to make art.

Five Hundred Mirrors
What can we learn about our present from Giorno’s collaborations between artists, the human voice, and machine-operated mass media, intertwining language, technology, and sociality? K Allado-McDowell and Marcus Boon on poetry, social media, and the impact of Buddhism on Giorno’s passion for reproduction and endless multiplications of words.

Fiction: Murmuration / Flock
“How do/shall we explain
      the muffled vocabulary of peace
      always on the brink//arriving broken into pieces
      spread out in a random majesty of here.”
Inspired by the mesmerizing patterns of birds, Erica Hunt contributes two poems.

Opinion: Voices on the Radio, Language on My Mind: Poetry’s Resurgence in Contemporary Art
Reflecting on historical swells of poetry’s appeal, Allison Grimaldi Donahue contemplates the popularity and purpose of a medium that “lives in the continuous present.”

Tidbits: Riar Rizaldi by Harry Burke; Ian Waelder by Carina Bukuts; Crystal Z Campbell by Sonia Fernández Pan; Helena Uambembe by Mistura Allison; Valentin Noujaïm by Edwin Nasr.

Thinkers: Survival Is a Promise
“This biography considers what Audre considered and what organized her life: weather patterns, supernovas, geological scales of transformation, radioactive dust.” An excerpt from Alexis Pauline Gumbs’s forthcoming Survival Is a Promise on Black lesbian feminist poet warrior mother Audre Lorde.

Curators: Art and Its Organizational Forms
“To what degree do institutions “flex” to absorb the positions and forms that art takes on? Is there a point in this flexing where institutional authority is broken down and redistributed?” Richard Birkett on self-organization.

Criticism: The Vow
Opening a new yearlong Criticism column on artists’ writings edited by Mira Dayal, TJ Shin considers the structures shaping relationships among writers, readers, and larger “centers” of meaning. They discuss their strategies to navigate the institutional desire to access identity.

Reprint: Ephemera no. 7 (1978) by Ulises Carrión
Selected by Arnisa Caterina Zeqo 

“I have a strong desire to embrace gossip and the ephemeral as a political action and attitude, and in doing so, to think about love, friendship, and fictional (auto)biographies as an intrinsic strategy in life and art.” Arnisa Caterina Zeqo revisits the seventh issue of Ephemera magazine, handwritten by Ulises Carrión.

Monograph: An Instrument That Had No History
Rooted in an ethos guided by Indigenous knowledges, Raven Chacon’s work represents a tectonic shift in art making vis-à-vis sonic practices. In dialogue with Pablo José Ramírez, Chacon speaks of his connection to the performative dimension of silence, and the possibility of an exteriority to Western audibility.

Monograph: In the Name of the Earthly Rebellion
Övül Ö. Durmuşoğlu
discusses how Maryam Tafakory’s gaze operates almost surgically, revealing a landscape of historical disruptions woven by women. A civic poet and feminist counter-archivist, Tafakory problematizes the Western romanticization of Iranian cinema, shifting our attention to the concealed complexities and complicities of images.

Books by Alice Bucknell.

Visual: Preemptive Listening, 2024
“I have a working definition of the siren that is non-audio-centric. It is a call to attention, a call to action, encoding a future-oriented instruction.” A visual essay by Aura Satz alongside a conversation between the artist and Quinn Latimer.

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