Signalism in lexicons

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Signalism - an avant-garde creative movement born in Yugoslavia, with aspiration to include into art creative work the exact way of thinking, in harmony with today’s science and its methods. Especially insists on application of mathematics and on computers as instruments suitable for inspiration and realization of artistic planes. In the literature besides experimentation with a word (stochastic poetry, tehnological poetry, computer poetry and others kinds of poetry’s) insists on including visual, touchables and others elements (signalist visual poetry, signalist scientific poetry, gestual poetry and ecc.). Born earlier, at the end of the sixties, it was formed especially by the merit of Belgrade signalist group headed by the poet Miroljub Todorovic. The voice of the movement was the review Signal.

(Mala enciklopedija / Little Encyclopedia Prosveta - The Universal Encyclopedia - fourth edition, volume 3, Prosveta, Belgrade 1986, pag. 357.)

SIGNALISM - interdisciplinary art movement of international character, born in Yugoslavia around 1960. The founder and theoretician of the movement is Miroljub Todorovic. The members were poets, painters, historians of art, scientists and designers. Signalism supports the exact way of thinking and extreme experiments (Conceptual Art, Concetre Poetry, Mail Art). In some researches they use computers as a creative instrument. The manifestos of signalism were published in 1968, 1969, 1970. The members of the movement published the review Signal (1970 - 1973) and established Signalist Documentation Centre in Belgrade. Five signalist exhibitions were held (Milan 1971; Zagreb 1974; Belgrade 1975; 1982; Odzaci 1981). Following yugoslav artists took part in the movement: Marina Abramovic, Nesa Paripovic, Zoran Popovic, Milivoje Pavlovic, Ljubisa Jocic, Spasoje Vlajic, Jaroslav Supek and Vlada Stojiljkovic.

(Opća enicklopedija / The Universal Encyclopedia - complementary volume, Yugoslav Lexicography department, Zagreb, 1988, pag. 588.)

SIGNALISM is a new artistic movement, with the aspiration to apply exact method of thought in art. It’s inspiration and support is found in the civilization of technology and sciences: physics, biology, astrophysics, and especially mathematics. Besides experiments in the verbal domain in literature, it insists on introducing visual. vocal, tactile and other elements. poetry is inspired by Appolinaire’s calligrammes and Einsteine’s theory of relativity is considered the best poem of the modern era. At the time of it’s beginning (1959) it’s name was Scientism. It has achieved greater zeal in 1968 when Manifesto of Poetical Sciences was published, in 1969 when Regulae Poesis (Manifesto of Signalism) appeared and in 1970 when the Third Manifesto of Signalism was published. Cybernetic methods were emphasized in this second period, and then a stronger development of visual poetry occurred. Letters are used not as sound but as visual elements and the writer “does not write about a certain subject, he represents it, or represents it’s essence by different arrangements of letters and symbols”. The movement obtains it’s journal Signal in 1970. The program of the journal is the recognition of signalist ideas in literature and art in general. The first anthology of Signalism appeared in 1971 in Novi Sad in Hungarian and Serbo-Croatian language, in the scope of Hungarian journal Uj Symposion. In 1971 signalist artists organized an exhibition of their works in the Gallery of Contemporary Art in Zagreb, and had a few exhibitions abroad.The founder and theoretician of Signalism is Serbian poet Miroljub Todorovic. He is also the editor of the journal Signal.

(Jugoslovenski književni leksikon / YUGOSLAV LITERARY LEXICON, Second revised edition, Matica Srpska, Novi Sad, 1984, pp 740-741.)

SIGNALISM (lat. signum - sign) -An experimental creative movement, originated in Serbian poetry in the middle of the sixthies, which acquired its followers in a wider Yugoslav space by the end of the sixth and the beginning of the seventh decade of this century. Its beginnings are being linked with the year 1959, when the founder and theorist of this movement M. Todorović began with experiments in language, convinced that there was not revolution in poetry unless it was performed in the basic medium of the latter - in language. The birth of Signalism in Serbian literature and culture and its strivings for the other arts (fine arts, theatrical, music and film) also to be revolutionized, resulted from a need to negate the worn models preserved by poetical and cultural tradition in general and to respond creatively to the demands and “spiritual situation” of modern technological and electronic civilisation. In the program texts (manifests and other texts of special purpose) and in concrete art works of S. a determined break with the “principles of Neoromantism and late Symbolism” is expressed, which still rule in Serbian poetry, as well as an endevour to change the code of Serbian poetry by radical operations both on the level of objectness (contents) and on that of expression (form), and to bring it into accord with the modern time. The revolutioning of the poetry language was begun by its scientiation - by entering symbols, formulas, lexemes and qreater lingual statements from exact sciences (physics, biology, chemistry, mathematics, biochemistry, astrophysics) and by visualisation of text (graphical disassembling of words, sintagms and statements into syllables and letters as signs and their spreading on the space of a page; entering non - verbal signs in text, like drawings, graphs, photographs and other elements that are being collaged), so that the first phase of S. is marked by the term scientism, and it is illustrated best by the books of M. Todorović Planet (1965) and The Travel to Astroland (1971) and the cycles of poems Protein, Oxigen, Hothouse as well as others, in which the boundaries of the object’s field are set by the categories of Space, Time, Matter. To the constitutioning of S. as an experimental movement which, negating the poetical and cultural heritage of the poetical and esthetic convention and canonized form-making actions, insists on experiment in realisation of the new, a remarkable contribution was made by three manifests: The manifest of poetical science, 1968, The manifest of Signalism (Requlae Poesis), 1969, and Signalism, 1970, as well as the starting of the journal Signal (1970). The journal Signal was published in nine issues in period 1970-73; in it, besides the supplements of domestic and foreign artists, also bibliographic data about the experimental publications in the world were published.The works of our S. have been represented in several anthologies of concrete and visual poetry throughout the world; two domestic antologies were also published: Signalist Poetry (1971) and Concrete, visual and signalist poetry (1975). The poetical principles of S. were accepted also by numerous poets, artists of fine arts, playwrights, mathematicians and physicists, respecting them even after S. as a movement ceased to act. Besides the founder M. Todorović (Kyberno, 1970, Pig is an excellent swimmer, Fool puts on airs, 1974, Insect on template, 1978, Algol, 1980, Textum, 1981, Chinese erotism, 1983, Knockout, 1984, J am mounting Rocinante again, 1987, Water snake drinks rainwater, 1988, Diary of avant-garde, 1990), significant contributions to the theory and practice were given by: M. Abramović, S. Pavićević (Silicates of flower, 1973, Works on roads, 1984), Z. Roshulj (Typosignalist variations, 1973), S. Vukanović (Star feathers, 1975, The snapshot of the ship diary casette, 1978, The space migration Montenegro, 1985. Boat, spoon, 1990), M. Pavlović (White book, 1974), M. Kesheljević (Ship X, 1982), N. Paripović, Lj, Jocić (Moonlight in tetrapack, 1975, What is the time, 1976), S. Vlajić (Light formula, 1984), J. Supek and others. Lit. M. Todorović, Signalism, 1979; J. Kornhauser, Sygnalizm - Propozycja serbskiej poezji eksperymentalnej, 1981; Signalism - an experimental creative movement, coll., 1984; M. B. Shijaković, Signalism in the world, 1984; Ž.S. Živković. The orbits of signalism, 1985; M. Todorović, The cock from the Bailon Square, 1986; Signalism - Poectics of signalism, Koraci, 1-2, 1976; The fragments about signalism, Književna reč, 55, 26.IV 1976; The postwar Serbian avan-garde, Gradina, 8, 1980; L’avant-garde en Yugoslavie, Doc(k)s, 12, 1978; Signalism - guestions and answers, Koraci, 1-2, 1982; Signalism, Književna reč 184, 19.III 1982; Signalism, Književne novine 641, 4, II 1982; Signalism Književna kritika 2, 1984; Signalism - a Yugoslavian creative movement, Tok, 13-14, 1985/86; Ars poetica (Signalism), Povelja, 3-4, 1987; 1-2, 1988; The signalist controversies, Književnost, 1-2, 1989; The fragments about Signalism, Polja, 363-364, May-June, 1989 Ž. Živković, The genres in Signalism, Knjizevna kritika, 4, 1989; Signalism, Savremenik, 1-2-3, 1990. Signalism after three decades, Stremljenja, 2-3, 1990; Signalism, Gradina, 5, 1990.

(Rečnik književnih termina / The Dictionary of literary terms 2 nd amended addition, The Institute for Literature and Art in Belgrade, Nolit, Belgrade, 1992 p.p. 766-767.)


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Пројекат Растко / Књижевност / Сигнализам