All the King´s Horses: Letterism Today?

A seminar on the history and the actuality of the Letterist movement

24.5 2011 – 25.5 2011


What is Letterism? How do we write its history and which is its significance today? All the King’s Horses: Letterism Today? invites four artists, art historians and film specialists to introduce this movement for a Swedish audience and discuss its actuality.

Letterism was founded in 1945 by the Romanian poet and artist Isidore Isou (1925-2007). The Letterist movement was one of the earliest and most influential avantgardes of European postwar art. Among its members was Guy Debord, who would later distance himself from the movement and create the Situationist International. But Letterism has continued to operate in the periphery of the French artworld, and a number of poets, artists and filmmakers are still producing new works with reference to the concepts and theories introduced by Isou.


Frédéric Acquaviva: artist, musician, curator and collector, specialized in the Letterist movement. He recently curated the exhibition of Gil Wolman’s works at MACBA in Barcelona and the Fundação Serralves in Porto.

Nicole Brenez: film historian, critic and curator, specialized in French experimental film. In 2001, she published the anthology Jeune, dure et pure! Une histoire du cinéma d’avant-garde et expérimental en France, in collaboration with Christian Lebrat.

Anne-Catherine Caron: Letterist artist and writer. Also works as a curator.

Michel Giroud: publisher, ”oral painter”, and historian of avant-garde movements. In 2008 he published Paris, laboratoire des avant-gardes: Transformations – Transformateurs, 1945–1965.

The seminar is organized by Jonas (J) Magnusson and Kim West, with support from Allianz Kulturstiftung. Curator in charge at Moderna Museet: Camilla Carlberg As a part of the project two evenings about Letterism will also be organized in Paris. At the Institut suédois Frédérique Devaux will talk about and show letterist films. Thursday May 19, 7.30 pm. At Castillo/Corrales Bernard Girard and Michel Giroud will discuss the history of Letterism and how it can be written today. Saturday May 21, 6 pm.
The seminar is organised by Jonas (J) Magnusson and Kim West, with funding from Allianz Kulturstiftung.

Seminar curator at Moderna Museet: Camilla Carlberg