The Experiment as Act: A methodological inquiry into (how to analyse) the performative experiments between poetry, sound, and media conducted at POEX65.

Research output: Contribution to conference without publisher/journalConference abstract for conferenceResearchpeer-review

64 Downloads (Pure)


In December 1965, an experiment took place at The Independent Art Space in Copenhagen (Den Frie Kunstbygning). Short named POEX65, it was looking to create and activate POetry EXperiments across artistic genres and formats (thus, in essence, making a POetry EXposition).
The POEX65 event framed many seminal experiments between poetry, sound and media. This paper will focus on the methodologies of ‘archiving’ experimental artforms. The ‘archive’, here, is argued to be in-between a gathering of objects and the simulation of time (Ernst). The archive presents one of the great cultural enigmas of our time: It is constructed like a (sub)medium that collects our cultural history; at the same time, the archive often ‘forgets’ it’s own pre-experimental status and simply slips into a state of unconscious repetition which allows parallel histories to emerge in-between everything else.
This paper tries to identify and locate the experiments of POEX65 as acts; and to ask the questions: what constitutes those acts as experiments? and how do we possibly archive them?
My purpose, then, is to define the methodologies to obtain the contours of a post-phenomenology of experimental artistic production in order to be able to analyse the phenomena found at POEX65. Here I will use the notion of the ‘ontological theatre’ (Pickering), which, according to Pickering, is acted out in experimental art productions. The experiment could thus be seen as an ‘agency-realism’ – as an ‘act’ of relations across the aesthetics of artforms and -genres.

Concretely, my paper will focus on the analysis of the agency-realism of two (performative) experiments across poetry, sound and media particularly: ‘Spirals’ by CO-RITUS (Jens Jørgen Thorsen, Hardy Strid og Jørgen Nash), The Vogel Quartet, and Per Aage Brandt Quartet); and ‘Electronic Music’ by composer Jørgen Plaetner, painter/visual artist Helge Ernst, and poet/critic Poul Borum. The analysis will not be of the works-in-themselves, but of their agens, mediation-strategies, and of their ‘archiving’. The latter will draw on concrete experience from building interfaces to POEX65 for the Sound Art exhibition at ZKM (march 2012 – January 2013).
Original languageEnglish
Publication date2013
Publication statusPublished - 2013
EventLiterature, Media and Sound - Aaruhs Universitet, Aarhus, Denmark
Duration: 28 Nov 201330 Nov 2013


ConferenceLiterature, Media and Sound
LocationAaruhs Universitet

Cite this