Asemic Strip

Posted: October 7, 2011 in asemic, Digital Photography, fluxus, poetry, visual poetry
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This is a short essay that was published in a TLP by Monocle Lash Anti-press earlier this year, and I used the images in this slideshow to illustrate it. These images were also sent to Ginny Lloyd in the form of a photo booth strip for her book pub. at:

Letters themselves originate from images historically. As a sign of this digital, post-modern age, ASEMIC writing is more accepted/appreciated. It’s “A-semic” as it doesn’t attempt to relay a specific meaning, though there might be a private system of symbols privy only to the poet/artist or to some ancient culture, or may have been a readable text that underwent processing and is no longer readable via an established language system. This approach encourages new ways of reading and thinking and reaches across language barriers. Any meaning the reader construes is a correct translation. Tim Gaze is an Australian who has written about asemic poetry and curated asemic exhibits. (Google his name to read an interview with Tim Gaze, etc.)

We are inspired by ALL the art forms – no matter which media one might choose to focus on. Jackson Pollock’s paintings may remind one of scribbling, though he never called himself an asemic poet. Today, many artists use text in their visual art but do not associate themselves with visual poetry. There is bias among photographers and some digital artists who still feel it is crude to include words with a visual image as it takes away from the artistic merit. I feel that musicians, poets, visual-video-and book artists, performers of dance, theater- ALL types of artists should be encouraged to use ALL the art forms as tools of their trade (ART). INTERMEDIA was an important concept listed in fluxus manifestos.


  1. Jorge Luiz Antonio says:

    Good, creative and beautiful work, Catherine. Congratulations.
    Even the “asemic” word is very interesting, there would be possibility of several interpretations and various meanings for the your good “Asemic Strip”. Visual languages have meanings and they depend on our reception. This paradox (no meaning / many meanings) is the challenge to e-reader.


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