Friday, October 29, 2010

ABC Wednesday "O": OULIPO

so, i'm a little late in posting for ABC Wednesday.  so let's just pretend it's wednesday, shall we!!

the letter this week is "O'.  and my word for the week which i have just recently discovered and would love to share is:  Oulipo.

Oulipo.  what the heck is that, was my first thought.  so i immediately googled it.  and wikipedia brought this up:

Oulipo (French pronunciation:[ulipo], short for French: Ouvroir de littérature potentielle; roughly translated: "workshop of potential literature") is a loose gathering of (mainly) French-speaking writers and mathematicians which seeks to create works using constrained writing techniques. It was founded in 1960 by Raymond Queneau and François Le Lionnais. Other notable members include novelists Georges Perec and Italo Calvino, poet Oskar Pastior and poet/mathematician Jacques Roubaud
interesting i thought.  but still not sure what the heck it meant.  'constrained writing'.  another word required translation which once again lead to more research.  back to google:

Constrained writing is a literary technique in which the writer is bound by some condition that forbids certain things or imposes a pattern. Constraints are very common in poetry, which often requires the writer to use a particular verse form.

Below are some examples of Oulipian constraints:

S+7, sometimes called N+7
Replace every noun in a text with the noun seven entries after it in a dictionary. For example, "Call me Ishmael. Some years ago..." (from Moby-Dick) becomes "Call me islander. Some yeggs ago...". Results will vary depending upon the dictionary used. This technique can also be performed on other lexical classes, such as verbs.

My Version:  of N+7
you fit into me like a fish hook into an eye, a fish hook an open eye (my favorite poem by M. Atwood)
N+7 = you flavour into me like a flag host into an factor, a flag host, an open factor
go here and this site, the N+7 Machine will do all the work for you, you just have to input your sentence.  Snowball
A poem in which each line is a single word, and each successive word is one letter longer.

Writing that excludes one or more letters. The previous sentence is a lipogram in B, F, H, J, K, Q, V, Y, and Z (it does not contain any of those letters).

Palindromes The most familiar palindromes, in English at least, are character-by-character: The written characters read the same backwards as forwards. Some examples of palindromic words: civic, radar, level, rotator, rotor, tacocat, kayak, reviver, racecar, and redder. 

Or Phrases, Palindromes often consist of a phrase or sentence :
"Go hang a salami I'm a lasagna hog.",
"Was it a rat I saw?",
"Step on no pets",
 "Sit on a potato pan, Otis",
"Lisa Bonet ate no basil",
"Satan, oscillate my metallic sonatas",
"I roamed under it as a tired nude Maori",
"Yo banana boy",
"Rise to vote sir",
or the exclamation "Dammit, I'm mad!"
Punctuation, capitalization, and spacing are usually ignored, although some (such as "Rats live on no evil star") include the spacing.

So, there you have it.  Oulipo, writers seeking to create works using constrained writing techniques.  Got it.  It all makes sense now. 

ok, now how to translate this to art and painting.  paint without the colour blue? paint something that looks the exact same when put upside down? lol 

have a great Friday!



Roger Owen Green said...

or paint something familiar - like a flag - with the correct colors - but a different order.
Love this post; didn't know the word.

ROG, ABC Wednesday team

Berowne said...

Oulipo. Very interesting; I learned something.

Cezar and Léia said...

Hmmm thanks so much for teaching me a new word "Oulipo", it's very interesting indeed.Your blog is wonderful, great posts here! Congrats and thanks so much for your kind visit!
Hugs from Luxembourg

☆♥Shydub♥☆ said...

Another O word i learned from ABC here at your post