Artists – VERSschmuggel

Ricardo Aleixo

Ricardo Aleixo (born in 1960 in Belo Horizonte) is a decidedly interdisciplinary artist. He is a poet, essayist, editor, visual artist, sound designer, singer, composer and performer. He co-founded and curates the FAN (Festival de Arte Negra), the major art and culture festival of the African Diaspora in Brazil.
His poetry shows a concern with formal research and multi-media experimentation nd approaches the Concrete Poetry of Augusto de Campos.
Ricardo Aleixo has been awarded many prizes including the 2010 Prêmio Literatura para todos. In the same year he received the cultural fellowship of the Petrobras for his volume of verse Modelos Vivos (2010).
Publications (selection):
Modelos Vivos. Crisalida 2010.
Máquina Zero. Francisco Caq 2004.

Horácio Costa

Horácio Costa (born in São Paulo in 1954) gained a PhD after studying at the University of São Paulo and the NYU in Yale and was then a professor at the Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México for fourteen years. As a translator he has translated Octavio Paz, José Gorostiza and Elizabeth Bishop into Portuguese. Horácio Costa has now returned to the USP and teaches Portuguese literature there. From 2006 to 2008 he chaired the ABEH (Associação Brasileira de Estudos da Homocultura).
Horácio Costa’s poems steer between poetry and prose and replies to the genre question with irony. In 2004 an anthology of his poems was edited by Haroldo de Campos.
Publications (selection):
Fracta, ed. Haroldo de Campos. Editora Perspectiva 2004.
Quadragésimo. Aldus 1999.
Satori. Iluminuras 1989.

Ann Cotten

Ann Cotten (born in Iowa, USA in 1982) is the most outspoken of the younger German-speaking poets. In 1987 she came to Vienna and studied German, graduating with a dissertation on lists in Concrete Poetry. In 2006 she moved to Berlin. Ann Cotten was celebrated as a ‘wunderkind’ on the publication by Suhrkamp in 2007 of her Fremdwörterbuchsonette (Foreign Dictionary Sonnets). Together with Monika Rinck and Sabine Scho she puts on the ‘Rotten Kinck Schow’ at irregular intervals.
Her poetry is characterised by playful language experiments and clarity. “Ann Cotten ties up the traditional canon of forms in a fresh, new way which is also a disruption and tries to read the world and situations in a way that is as lateral to the norm as possible.” (Christian Steinbacher).
In 2007 she received the Reinhard Priessnitz Prize and the Clemens Brentano Prize the following year.
Publications (selection):
Fremdwörterbuchsonette. Suhrkamp-Verlag 2007.
Nach der Welt. Die Listen der konkreten Poesie und ihre Folgen. Klever 2008.
Florida-Räume. Suhrkamp-Verlag 2010. 

ann cotten + woh_-verschwinden (fragment)

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Gerhard Falkner

Gerhard Falkner (c) gezett

Gerhard Falkner (born in Schwabach in1951) has been shaking up the German poetry scene since the early 1980s. Since his debut, so beginnen am körper die tage (so the days begin with the body), poems bringing the aestheticism of Stefan George up-to-date, Falkner has been pushing the boundaries of contemporary poetry with every book and multi-media project. As well as prose, plays and perceptive, polemical essays, his work includes broad-based poetry projects such as a cycle filmed with actors from Schaubühne am Lehniner Platz theatre on the Pergamon altar frieze. Falkner also writes impressive, explosive poetry about tables, painkillers and the gods at Aldi.

Publications (Auswahl):
Ignatien. Elegien am Rande des Nervenzusammenbruchs.starfruitpublications 2014
Pergamon Poems. Gedichte + Clips. kookbooks 2012
Hölderlin Reparatur. Gedichte. Berlin Verlag 2008
Gegensprechstadt – groundzero. Gedicht, with music by David Moss. kookbooks 2005
Endogene Gedichte. Grundbuch. DuMont Verlag 2000
Über den Unwert des Gedichts. Fragmente und Reflexionen. Aufbau Verlag 1993
Wemut. Gedichte. Luchterhand Verlag 1989
der atem unter der erde. Gedichte. Luchterhand Verlag 1984
so beginnen am körper die tage. Gedichte. Luchterhand Verlag 1981

Auszeichnungen (Auswahl):
Wolfram von Eschenbach Prize 2014
Prize of the City of Nuremberg 2010
August Graf von Platen Prize 2009
Peter Huchel Prize 2009
Kranichstein Literature Prize 2008
Dr. Manfred Jahrmarkt Honorary Award of the German Schiller Foundation 2004
Bavarian Arts Promotion Prize for Literature 1987

Pergamon Poems III: Artemis | Tilman Strauß, Gerhard Falkner, Pergamonaltar:

Barbara Köhler

Barbara Köhler (born in Burgstädt, Germany, in 1959) worked after leaving school as a skilled textile production worker in Plauen, and subsequently in a care home for the elderly and as a lighting technician in the Karl Marx Stadt (now Chemnitz) municipal theatre. From 1985 to 1988 she studied at the Johannes R. Becher Institute for Literature in Leipzig. Freelance since 1988, in 1994 she moved to Duisburg, where she still lives, working as a freelance translator (Samuel Beckett, Gertrude Stein) and writer, also creating text installations and multiples and temporary and permanent works for public spaces and private gardens.
Her prizes include the 1996 Clemens Brentano Prize and the 2008 Joachim Ringelnatz Prize. She was also the ‘City Scribe’ in Rheinsburg in 1995 and Writer in Residence at the University of Warwick in 1997. In 2012 Köhler holds the Thomas Kling Lecturership in Poetics at the University of Bonn.
Publications (selection):
Deutsches Roulette. Gedichte 1984-1989. Suhrkamp-Verlag 1991.
Wittgensteins Nichte. Vermischte Schriften, Mixed Media. Suhrkamp 1999.
Niemands Frau. Gesänge zur Odyssee. Suhrkamp 2007.

Barbara Köhler: Nausikaa | Rapport (aus: Niemands Frau)

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Christian Lehnert

Christian Lehnert (born in Dresden in 1969) studied Religious Studies, Oriental Studies and Theology. Following periods of residence in Israel and Spain, he now lives near Wittenburg, where he is Director of Studies for Theology, Contemporary History and Culture at the Saxony Anhalt Evangelical Academy. He is known for his knowledge of the Christian, Jewish and Muslim religions. His poetry may be described as discreet metaphysics. In his latest collection of poetry, Aufkommender Atem (Rising Breath) (2011), he devotes himself to the big questions of religion without forgetting the day-to-day. He wrote the libretto for Hans Werner Henze’s concert opera Phaedra, which was premiered in the Berlin State Opera in Unter den Linden in 2007. He has won many literary prizes, including the 1998 Dresden Poetry Prize, the 2003 promotional prize in the Lessing Prize of the Free State of Saxony and the 2005 promotional prize in the Hugo Ball Prize of the City of Pirmasens.

Publications (selection): Der gefesselte Sänger, Suhrkamp-Verlag 1997; Der Augen Aufgang, Suhrkamp-Verlag 2000; Finisterre, Edition Korrespondenzen 2002; Ich werde sehen, schweigen und hören, Suhrkamp-Verlag 2004; Hans Werner Henze: Phaedra. Ein Tagebuch. In collaboration with Lehnert. Verlag Klaus Wagenbach, Berlin 2007; Auf Moränen, Suhrkamp-Verlag 2008

Jussara Salazar

Jussara Salazar (born in Pernambucoin in 1959) lives in Curitiba where she works as a graphic designer and writer. She is currently writing a doctoral thesis in communications and semiotics and edits the online journal lagioconda (
Jussara Salazar‘s poems reveal a religious-mythological world marked by intertextual reference and metaphorical language.
To research her volume of verse Carpideiras (2011), which follows the traces of the Portuguese ‘wailing women’ or professional mourners, she was awarded a Funarte de Criação Literária fellowship by the Brazilian Culture Ministry in 2009.
Publications (selection):
Carpideiras. 7Letras 2011.
Natália. Travessa dos Editores 2004.
Inscritos da casa de Alice. Tip. do Fundo de Ouro Preto 1999.

Marcos Siscar

Marcos Siscar (born in Borborema, São Paulo in 1964) is Professor of Philosophy at the University of Campinas. He is a poet and essayist and a scholar of the French tradition from Baudelaire to Derrida. He has translated Tristan Corbière, Michel Deguy and Jacques Roubaud into Portuguese. In 2007 his verse collection O Roubo do Silêncio was simultaneously published in Brazil and France (as Le Rapte du Silence).
In his poems, Marcos Siscar interrogates the transitions and overlaps between the concrete and the reflexive, banal reference and poetic formulation, newspaper reporting and metaphysical questioning. In 2005 Marcos Siscar was writer in residence in La Rochelle in France. In 2006 he was awarded the Goyaz Prize for Poetry by the Brazilian Culture Ministry.
Publications (selection):
Interior via Satélite. Ateliê 2010.
O Roubo do Silêncio. 7Letras 2007.
Le Rapte du Silence. Le Temps qu’il fait 2007.
Metade da Arte. Cosac & Naify/7 Letras 2003.

Ulf Stolterfoht

Ulf Stolterfoht (born in Stuttgart in 1963) became known for his fachsprachen (‘lingos’) series of books of poems, published by Urs Engeler). He has also translated Getrude Stein, conversed with Peter Dittmer‘s AMME (‘Nursie’) about poetry matters (Ammengespräche,  roughbooks 2011) and founded the virtual empire BRUETERICH, the poetry service for experimental poetry.
Through its imitative strategies, his poetry draws attention to the disconnect between world and language. His poems reveal a fascination with poetic method, language itself being in particular analysed as a means of creation. What is the carrying range of language, how clearly can it communicate, and at what point does it start to deceive?
From 2008 to 2009 he was a guest professor at the German Literature Institute in Leipzig. Prizes he has been awarded include the 2005 Anna Seghers Prize and the 2008 Peter Huchel Prize. In 2009 he and Barbara Köhler shared the Erlangen Literature Prize for Poetry in Translation.
Publications (selection):
Fachsprachen I-IX.  poems, Urs Engeler 1998.
holzrauch über heslach. poems, Urs Engeler 2007.
Ammengespräche. poems, roughbooks 2010.
handapparat heslach: Quellen und Materialien, roughbooks 2011
Aufkommender Atem, Suhrkamp-Verlag 2011

Dirceu Villa

Dirceu Villa (born in 1975 in São Paulo) is a translator of Ezra Pound and a reader of Ovid, Guido Cavalcanti and Baudelaire. He is currently working on a comparative study of Italian and English Renaissance poetry for his doctorate. Villa’s radical plurality is also reflected in his poetry, comprising narrative monologues, dramatic excerpts, sensual love lyrics and descriptive tours de force, always underscored by precision of rhythm, imagery and expression.
In 2000 he won the Nascente prize for new writers awarded by the Universidade de São Paulo for work on his second volume Descort (2003). His third, Icterofagia (2008) was extensively promoted by the Secretaria de Cultura do Estado de São Paulo.
Icterofagia. Hedra 2008.
Descort. Hedra 2003.
MCMXCVIII. Selo Badaró 1998. 

Jan Wagner

Jan Wagner (born in 1971 in Hamburg) lives in Berlin. He is a freelance poet, literary critic and translator (of, among others, Matthew Sweeney and Simon Armitage) and was from 1995 to 2003 co-editor of the international literary journal-in-a-box Die Außenseite des Elements (The Outside of the Element). Together with Björn Kuhligk he co-edited the anthology Lyrik von Jetzt. 74 Stimmen (Poetry of the Now. 74 Voices) (DuMont Literatur- und Kunstverlag 2003) and the book Der Wald im Zimmer. Eine Harzreise (The Forest in the Room. A Journey in the Harz) (Berliner Taschenbuch Verlag 2007).
A great narrator in the small form, he combines with virtuosity the everyday with the mythical, classical poetic forms with free improvisation.
His precise language and imagery and his effortless playing with forms have brought him many prizes and awards including the 2004 Anna Seghers Prize and the 2011 Kranichstein Literature Prize. In that same year he was also awarded the Fellowship of the German Academy in Rome (Villa Massimo).
Publications (selection):
Probebohrung im Himmel. Berlin-Verlag 2001.
Guerickes Sperling. Berlin-Verlag, 2004.
Achtzehn Pasteten. Berlin-Verlag, 2007.
Australien. Berlin-Verlag, 2010.

Érica Zíngano

Érica Zíngano (born in 1980 in Fortaleza) engages in humorous reflection on her own poetic work in the library, at home and on the street. She currently does this in Lisbon, where she is working on a doctoral thesis on Portuguese writer Maria Gabriela Llansol. In her own poems and video works, Érica Zíngano emphasises the everyday with a strong rhythm, using apparently banal imagery to reveal tensions within language, interrogating without any false modesty the literary tradition - Camões, Madame Bovary, and even The Guinness Book of Records and Google are used as sources for her ambiguous poems.
She received the 2009 ProAc Prize from the Secretaria de Cultura do Estado de São Paulo to enable her to complete her book project fio, fenda, falésia.
fio, fenda, falésia. In collaboration with Renata Huber and Roberta Ferraz. Editora das Autoras 2010.