April is National Poetry Month, launched by the Academy of American Poets in April 1996 to remind the public that poets have an integral role to play in our culture and that poetry matters. Since then, it has become one of the largest literary celebrations in the world.
Keith Haring was deeply impacted by poetry, writing in his Journals in the Fall of 1979, “I have been enlightened. I have fell into poetry and it has swallowed me up.” You can read what Keith wrote about poetry in his Journals, which he titled, “The Chunk Called Poetry,” below.
To learn more about National Poetry Month, and how to become involved in the celebration of poetry, visit the website of the Academy of American Poets.
Ugo Rondinone: I ♥ John Giorno is a citywide exhibition presenting the work and life of poet, artist, and activist, John Giorno, which opened this week in venues across Manhattan. Giorno, an iconic figure of New York’s downtown art scene, is perhaps most widely-known for his Dial-a-Poem phone line where anyone could call in and listen to poets, musicians, and activists performing their works. The Dial-a-Poem line has been reprised for this exhibition and can be reached by calling (641) 793-8122.
While still a student, Keith Haring was heavily influenced by the work of John Giorno and other innovative poets and writers, like William Burroughs and Brion Gysin. Keith wrote about this inspiration his journals, most notably in a piece he titled “A Chunk Called Poetry,” which can be read on our Tumblr on journal pages 62-67. Later, Keith would collaborate with many of these artists. Below is an album cover Keith created for a 1985 record compilation issued by Giorno Poetry Systems titled, A Diamond Hidden in the Mouth of a Corpse, which included such artists as Sonic Youth, Hüsker Dü, Diamanda Galás, and Coil.
Ugo Rondinone: I ♥ John Giorno is open now and runs through August 6, 2017. For more information and a list of participating venues visit http://www.ilovejohngiorno.nyc