I offer a lifetime's experience as a sound, visual and concrete performance poet. I use modern technology to enhance the expression of poetry and encourage everyone of whatever age at my creative sessions to develop their responses and talents. They are introduced to improvisation, musical accompaniment and electronics; computer graphics, digital photography and the i-pad. Poems they create can be captured on film and transmitted through the diversity of the latest media.
I have performed and exhibited my poetry internationally since 1969 taking part in Festivals in USA, Canada, Italy, Holland, Germany and Portugal as well as in GB - and am committed to Extending the Forms of Poetry, the title of my 50 Years of Poetry celebration at the Poetry Library, Royal Festival Hall, London, 8pm 3 October 2012 when I published Catalogue 3: GOING FOR GOLD, Poems 2001-2011. This and its companion My Life in Poetry - 50 Years Sustained has been purchased by the Library, now having 34 of my works on their database.
Since my first performance in 1969 I have developed a participatory style of poetry, inviting all present to contribute as 'responsive' and 'interactive' voices, as in an event Poems for Many Voices, OXFRINGE FESTIVAL, Oxford, June 2012.
My outdoor performance poem in the 1978 Venice Biennale, based on a treated text of Ruskin's Stones of Venice, gave me the impetus to create site-specific poems characterising the environment in gardens, fields and historic sites and I performed POMONA TREMOUGH ORCHARD with 'interactive voices' in the old orchard on campus at the Environmental Utterance Conference, University College Falmouth,Cornwall, 1-2 September 2012. An informal DVD of this is available for viewing at The Poetry Library, London, and I made an artists book comprising poems, i-pad visuals and documentary photos.
My career as poet after graduating in Hons English Language and Literature, University College London, has been supported by free-lance teaching in a wide range of educational establishments, from Junior to University level and includes Creative Writing Evening Classes at Oxford College of Further Education, 1974-90; an undergraduate programme teaching the history of visual poetry at Oxford Polytechnic 1990-94 (now Brookes University); Writer in Schools for Southern Arts, visiting schools of all age groups throughout the region for over 20 years.
In 1980 I founded my international Archive of Sound and Visual Poetry gathered by exchanging my Little Press publications with fellow poets in the innovative field: this research resource now contains over 5,000 books, poem objects,exhibition catalogues, cassettes and CDs and is the basis of illustrated talks and displays. I intend to finish the Catalogue by the end of 2013 and a copy will available for reference at the Poetry Library London.
For comprehensive information, visit www.paulaclaire.com and allied YouTube slots.
For recent DVD and Interview, visit the Manchester innovative poetry group at www.otherroom.org; also on vimeo.
Published Works: (selection)
Mobile Poems, Greece (Truexpress, Oxford 1968).
15 publications by Writers Forum (London, from 1972-85).
42 publications by her Little Press, the Paula Claire Archive of Sound and Visual Poetry Oxford Publications, formerly known as the International Sound & Visual Poetry Archive; the International Concrete Poetry Archive, 1983 onwards.
Key works are Catalogue 1: DECLARATIONS, Poems 1961-91, an annotated list of 382 poem projects: 178 pages with 110 illustrations, with a 7-page introduction by the late Professor Eric Mottram, King's College, University of London, expert on contemporary poetry in GB and USA.
Catalogue 2: DI-VERS-ITY, Poems 1991-2001,an annotated list of poem projects Numbers 383 to 588: 213 pages including 86 b/w and 32 colour illustrations. Introduction by Paula Claire: 22 pages of explanation of the diversity of poetic techniques in the book.
These catalogues on database of The Poetry Library, Royal Festival Hall,London; Tate Britain Library.
Catalogue 3: GOING FOR GOLD, Poems 2001-11, an annotated list of poem projects Numbers 589 to 794, including 88 artists books; with many illustrations. Includes a chapter: My Life in Poetry, a review of her 50 years' experience. Introduction by Professor Robert Hampson, Royal Holloway University of London where her work is studied in M.A. Poetic Practice. To be published at the Poetry Library, London event: 3 October 2012, see Summary above.
VerbiVisiVoco, Editors Bob Cobbing /Eric Mottram (Writers Forum 500, London 1992).
Out of Everywhere: innovative poetry by women of UK & N. America, Editor Maggie O'Sullivan (Reality Street Editions, London, 1996).
IL SUONI E LE PAROLE - 8 European sound and visual poets, Editor Alfonso Malinconeco. (Marcus Edizioni, Naples 2006).
The Notation of my Sound Poetry, Open Letter, Spring 1984. Editor Frank Davey.(A Canadian Journal of Writing and Sources: Toronto,Canada).
Chapter on Paula Claire's Performance Poetry, Reading the Applause - reflections on performance poetry by various artists Editors Munden and Wade.(NAWE/University of Huddersfield, 1999).
THE DUNDEE TELEGRAMS: Sound Poetry, Ballads, Found Poems: Performances with music and electronics, with Steve Paxton, recorded under auspices of Texas Tech University Music Dept during Residencies 1983/5/6.
THE CLUE:Sounds Words Music Electronics.10 pieces, 8 recorded at University of Keele Music Studio with Peter Stacey, composer and musician, 1986-9; 2 new tracks. Issued by Paula Claire 2010, see website shop. Purchased by the British Library Sound Archive.
Cassette:(no longer available but can be heard at the Poetry Library, Royal Festival Hall, London)
The Fellowship of the Green Parrot, Sound Poetry and Songs, words and melodies by the poet, with musical backing composed and played by Peter Stacey (Underwhich Audiographics, Toronto, Canada. Recorded under auspices of University of Keele Music Dept Studio. 1986);
Stepping Stones, Sound Poetry and Songs by PC, with wide range of electronic effects selected by her. Recorded at University of Keele Music Dept Studio 1990 (Underwhich Audiographics, Toronto, Canada, 1990).
BBC Radio 4: 100 Field Names of Oxfordshire performed with the interactive voices of children and adults of The Woodcraft Folk, Burford May Festival; recorded with interview by Anna Hill for Toadpipe Meadow, 21 June 1997.
BBC Radio 4: Poetry Please slot: Tribute to her colleague Bob Cobbing, 21 March 2010.Interview with Paula Claire among others.
The poet with interactive voices of members of Chartham Conservation Society, Canterbury, Kent, performing poem created specially for the event Chartham Piece, 105 local field names, and recorded in fields above the village. October 1997, interview Mary Nightingale. Shown in Carlton Country Spring 1998.
The poet with interactive voices of villagers of Maid's Moreton Buckingham performing 100 Maids Moreton Field Names, commissioned by Southern Arts; filmed and shown in Heart of the Country, Carlton TV January 1999. Poem track used in Millennium Pageant.
Public Performances (select list):
Norman Hidden Reading Series, Lamb & Flag pub, Bloomsbury, London, November 1969.
Concrete Poetry Exhibition, Stedelijk Museum, Amsterdam, 1970; subsequently brought by The Arts Council to The Walker Art Gallery, Liverpool, 1971 (Sixth Forms Performance); Museum of Modern Art, Oxford, 1972. Included in Arts Council record anthology.
Institute of Contemporary Art, London, 1971.
Festival of Sound Poetry, Wilhelmsbad, Germany (televised documentary), 1972.
Annual International Sound Poetry Festivals, The Poetry Society, London, 1972-7.
The 1920's: Berlin Festival, Akademie der Kunst, Berlin, Germany, 1977.
Materialisation of Language Exhibition and outdoor Performance, Venice Biennale 1978.
International Sound Poetry Festival/Exhibition, St Lawrence Centre, Toronto, Canada, 1978 (with tour of 6 Ontario Schools). Visit sponsored by The British Council.
Between Speech and Poetry, Munster Museum, Germany. Performance and Exhibition, 1979.
The British Council: Athens & Thessaloniki: Lectures/Performances, March 1980.
International Sound Poetry Festival, New Wilderness Foundation, New York, 1980.
Days of New Poetry, Herzog August Bibliotek, Wolfenbuttel, Germany, 1981.
International Authors' Reading Series, Harbourfront Arts Center, Toronto, Canada, part of The Toronto Festival, June 1984.
Word & Image Series, Exeter College of Art & Design with Exeter University Dept of English, annual projects, 1982-5, culminating in International Sound & Visual Poetry Archive Exhibition at The Exe Gallery, and large-scale performance of Sounding in Exeter Cathedral with students from the College and Steve Paxton & Musicians from Texas Tech University USA, March 1985.
Tour with Paxton and musicians: March 1985: Oxford University Music Department; University College London Student Union; Sheffield Polytechnic; Music Department, University of York.
University of Houston Music Department as part of Houston Festival: first performance of PHOS PHOR with Texan musicians, 1986.
Cheltenham Festival of Literature 1987: Poetry/Music Duo RESOUNDSCORE: Paula Claire with Peter Stacey(musician); Performance in Art Gallery; PHOS PHOR in Town Hall; and programme for schools.
Uley Arts Centre, Glos: Poetry Picnic by neolithic long barrow and iron age fort June 1988.
30th Anniversary of Creating Poetry: performance and workshop, Poetry Library, Royal Festival Hall, London March 1991.
Poetry Reading Series, Spacex Gallery, Exeter, 1992. Eric Mottram Memorial Concert, King's College, London, 1995.
Reading at booklaunch of Out of Everywhere, East-West Gallery, London, 1996.
Association of Little Presses 30th Anniversary, Jude the Obscure, Oxford 1996.
Evening of Sound Poetry, The Eagle Gallery, London, February 1997.
Site-specific Performance Poems, Green College Garden, Oxford, Oxford Arts Weeks 1997.
Ginkgo Fanfare for the Millennium Scheme 1: The South West: Tilla Brading's annual Poetry Picnic, Fishponds House, Honiton, Devon, August 1997.
Interactive voices of 550 Junior children in commissioned poem OCTO, Annual Diocesan Children's Music Festival, Ely Cathedral Octagon, Cambs,14/15 October 1997
Performances in the Orchard, Apple Days, Sulgrave Manor, Northants 18/19 October 1997.
International Sound Poetry Festival, Berlin, 1998,visit sponsored by The British Council.
Poem for St Frideswide with 8-year-olds, Christ Church Cathedral, Oxford 1998/2000.
Lecture/Performance on Marinetti during exhibition, Estorick Collection of Italian 20th-century Art, London, 1999: Lecture/Performance on Severini word pictures and modern Italian exponents during Exhibition, venue as above.
Lecture/Performance on word-pictures of early 20th-century experimentalists during Severini exhibition, Feb 2000, Ashmolean Museum,Oxford 2000.
40th Anniversary of Creating Poetry: Performance, Worcester College, Oxford, June 2001
Poetry and Performance Festival, Oporto European Capital of Culture, July 2001 see YouTube excerpts.
Site-specific performance poem by monkey puzzle trees: with Stoke Canon Junior School, near Exeter,sponsored by Spacex Gallery Education Programme, September 2001.
THE SEVEN TABLES based on Dutch still-life paintings commissioned by and presented at The Oxford Symposium on Food and Cookery, St Anthony's College,Oxford, August 2003.
THE SEVEN TABLES presented in the gallery of 17th-century Dutch still-life paintings,Ashmolean Museum, Oxford, commissioned by the Friends of the Ashmolean; artists book of the poem presented to the Print Room by them, 2005.
40 Years of Performance celebratory Reading, same venue as 1969, Blue Bus Poets, 2010.
Oxford Professorship of Poetry Readings, Phoenix Picture House,Oxford, June 2010, see YouTube excerpt.
Readings 2012: see Summary above
Albion Beatnik Bookshop Oxford, aprt of a month-long Reading Series, November 2012.
Performances/Recordings/Exhibition at Texas Tech University Departments of Music/English/Art, Lubbock USA, April 1983; October 1984; April 1986.
St Paul's School, Wooburn Green, Bucks 1994: children 6-8 years culminating in school concert. Further visits and concert during Buckinghamshire Poetry Festival in Bourne End Library, 1994.
Brookside Junior School, Bicester,Oxon:term residency working with all ages culminating in concert at Bicester Community College, 1995.
International Group Exhibitions of Visual Poetry:(selection)
Poetry Today and Tomorrow, Frosinone Art School, Italy 1979.
The Open and Closed Book, Victoria and Albert Museum, London 1979.
Pen as Pencil, Europalia Exhibition, Brussells, Belgium 1981.
Experimental Poetry, The Town Hall, Valencia, Spain 1984.
1st International Festival of Living Poetry, Figueira Da Foz, Portugal 1987.
20 Years British Art from Sackner Archive, Bass Museum of Art, Miami USA 1988.
lnternational Concrete Poetry, Sao Paulo, Brazil 1988.
Visual Poetry, Melbourne City Library, Melbourne Australia 1990.
II Librismo 1896-1990, Artists' Books, Cagliari, Sardinia 1990.
Visualog 1,2 and 3, College of Printing, San Luis Obispo, CA USA 1984/6/91.
The Beauty in Breathing, Sackner Archive Exhibition, Int. Conf. Center, Miami 1992.
The World Poem, Figuiera Da Foz, Portugal 1993. Faxed Poetry, Melbourne, Australia 1994.
1st Exhibition of European/American Visual Poetry, and Congress, Brazil 1996.
International Visual Poetry, Malaga,Spain 2000. Visual Poetry,curator Fernando Aguiar, Northern Portugal 2002.
Patras Greece European Capital of Culture Visual Poetry exhibition, 2008.
Second Global Art Exhibition, Lisbon, Portugal, 2009.
Visual Poetics, The Poetry Library London, 2013.
Work in Major Archives:
Marvin Sackner Archive of Visual and Concrete Poetry, Miami USA (database: 160 items)
Getty Research Center Library CA USA (through the purchase of the Jean Brown Archive).
The Poetry Collection, University at Buffalo NY USA.
Library of the Museum of Modern Art, New York, USA. Hans Sohm Archive, Stuttgart, Germany.
Museum of Modern Art, Trento, Italy: Mirella Bentivoglio Donation; comprehensive catalogue, 2010. Arts Council Poetry Library, South Bank Centre, London - see database.
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