Creative Phase Activities
Techniques & Tutorials

FOUND POETRY

Objectives

1. Unlock creativity
2. Express emotions
3. Finding the right words to communicate
4. Focus attention on a topic
5. Facilitate the synthesis
6.Facilitate group sharing
7. Facilitate the visual and verbal animation of a topic
8. Increase self-esteem
9. Training problem solving
10. Facilitate storytelling

Material needed

- pages with printed text (photocopies, pages of old books, newspapers with texts ...)
- pencils, red markers, black markers
- white sheet for taking notes


 

Time frame

60 minutes

 

Found poetry is a form of creative writing to realize visual poems by taking words, phrases or part of existing texts from old books, journals, magazines etc. The objective is to find a new text that reflects the personal point of view of the author about a specific topic or not.
To let the poem emerge and visualise it, there are many creative strategies but we tested the easiest one: underline the chosen words, connect them with red lines and delete all the other useless words.

 

Emilio-Isgrò-Libro-cancellato-se-il-creatore-della-1972-libro-tecnica-mista-e-plexiglass-s
Emilio-Isgrò-Libro-cancellato-se-il-creatore-della-1972-libro-tecnica-mista-e-plexiglass-s

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Emilio-Isgrò-Credo-e-non-credo-2010-acrilico-su-tela-su-tavola-70-x-100-cm-scaled-e1591441
Emilio-Isgrò-Credo-e-non-credo-2010-acrilico-su-tela-su-tavola-70-x-100-cm-scaled-e1591441

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Screenshot 2022-09-20 at 11-36-36 Emilio Isgrò
Screenshot 2022-09-20 at 11-36-36 Emilio Isgrò

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Emilio-Isgrò-Libro-cancellato-se-il-creatore-della-1972-libro-tecnica-mista-e-plexiglass-s
Emilio-Isgrò-Libro-cancellato-se-il-creatore-della-1972-libro-tecnica-mista-e-plexiglass-s

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This activity is inspired by the conceptual Italian artist Emilio Isgrò, that created the art of erasure, his personal artistic language to make visual artwork by erasing all kind of texts.

1. Choose a text to work on. You can photocopy an excerpt from a book that is the same for everyone to work together on a specific topic, or take pages of different waste books for everyone or also you can choose texts from newspapers. If the activity is in group it will be nice to see different results starting from the same text.

2. Search for a maximum of 15 words scattered throughout the text, following a random order without reading. Do not choose a phrase or 2 words close to each others.  The activity of casual exploration of words can be facilitated by some "lens", black sheets of paper with a hole that allow your eyes to focus one word at a time. We suggest exploring the texts from the bottom up without following the natural direction of reading.

The chosen words can also be noted on a separate blank sheet.


 

found poetrri 1_edited.jpg
found poetri_edited.jpg

3. Once the words have been chosen, they can be circled with a red marker.

4. Now you should try to find a new order among the words to form a meaningful sentence, leaving poetic freedom! The important thing is to use the words of the text and not add others that are not already present.  At this point you can draw red arrows to link the words circled to remark the new reading order.

5. At the end, delete with a black line all the words that have not been chosen, taking care to leave the circled words and the red thread between them readable.

6. Ask your participants to read their Found Poem and make a small exhibition of all the poems by putting them on the wall.  
 

Recommendations to combine"Found Poetry" with other activities: