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Kenneth Goldsmith

Kenneth Goldsmith

Born in 1961 in Freeport, New York, Kenneth Goldsmith attended the Rhode Island School of Design for sculpture and worked as a visual artist for about ten years before taking up conceptual poetry.

His most recent books include the trilogy Sports (Make Now Press, 2008), Traffic (Make Now Press, 2007), and The Weather (Make Now Press, 2005). These volumes consist of a transcribed broadcast of a baseball game, of traffic patterns, and of the weather, respectively. In 2003, he published Day (The Figures), in which he retyped the entirety of the New York Times newspaper from Friday, September 1, 2000, resulting in an 836-page tome.

His other collections include Head Citations (The Figures, 2002), Soliloquy (Granary Books, 2001), Fidget (Coach House Books, 2000), 6799 (zingmagazine press, 2000), No. 111 2.7.93–10.20.96 (Small Press Distribution, 1997), and 73 Poems (Permanent Press, 1993).

These works all follow Goldsmith's model of "uncreative writing." According to the poet, "The idea becomes a machine that makes the text...Uncreative writing is only good when the idea is good." Fidget, for example, which was originally commissioned by the Whitney Museum, is an attempt to record every movement he made during one full day, and Soliloquy is a transcription of everything the poet said during one full week.

Critic Marjorie Perloff has written that "Goldsmith works on the borders between 'poetry' and 'prose' and, more courageously, between poetry and 'not poetry,' not to mention the borders between 'literature' and 'art'."

Together with poets like Christian Bök, Craig Dworkin, and Caroline Bergvall, Goldsmith has established "Conceptual Poetics," which he describes as "a poetics of the moment, fusing the avant-garde impulses of the last century with the technologies of the present, one that...obstinately makes no claims on originality."

Goldsmith teaches at the University of Pennsylvania. He hosts a weekly radio show on WFMU and is the founder of UbuWeb, an online resource for avant-garde poetry and media. He lives in New York with artist Cheryl Donegan and their two sons.

by this poet

poem

E28 THE NEW YORK TIMES, FRIDAY, SEPTEMBER 1, 2000

MAKING CHOICES

FINAL WEEKS

THROUGH SEPTEMBER 26

Anatomically Incorrect

How Movies

How Simple Can You Get?

Ideal Motif. Stieglitz, Weston,

Adams, and Callahan

Modern Living 2

New York Salon

The

poem

Am I going to have to fight you in court?

No. No. I'm not going to go to court unless you want me there.

I don't want to be in court either, OK?

I don't either.

All, um, um.. Here's the way it works, um, you'll you'll be released today, OK, OK?

Alright.

I I know I can I can bring

poem

No. I'm not mad. We were just playing. Yeah. It was a joke. It was a joke. The recorder will stay on this art week. What? No. Just one week. Oh, is it time already for another laundry? Oh, we can take it over. It's no big deal. Remember the time we buried the dog in the laundry? Wasn't that cute? This might be the