Kenneth Goldsmith is a poet and conceptual artist who holds a Bachelor of Fine Arts in sculpture. He served as a fellow of poetics and poetic practice at the University of Pennsylvania's Center for Programs in Contemporary Writing, where he taught an undergraduate class that included creative writing and poetics, and also was part of a series of workshops and readings at the university's Kelly Writers House and the Center for Programs in Contemporary Writing. Goldsmith also works as a host for Hoboken, New Jersey's WFMU radio.
In his writing, Goldsmith takes an unusual approach. Fidget is a chronicle of every movement of his body over a thirteen-hour period on Bloomsday, June 16, 1997, and serves as an homage to the work of Irish writer James Joyce, specifically to Joyce's Ulysses. A contributor for Publishers Weekly called it an "important book from Goldsmith, pointing the way to a rapproachment between poetry and conceptual and performance art—avant-gardists and art lovers of all stripes will want to experience its near-hypnotic pleasures." With Soliloquy, Goldsmith records his every word over a period of a week, everything from ordering food at a deli to a conversation with a cab driver. His side only is included, making for a puzzle effect. In a review for Publishers Weekly, a contributor remarked that the book "leaves the reader with a convinced sense that language, no matter how un-artful, does the heavy lifting in our lives, and has encoded the entire registry our being."
- (With Joan La Barbara) Seventy-three Poems, Permanent Press (Brooklyn, NY), 1993.
- Fidget (nonfiction), Coach House Books (Toronto, Ontario, Canada), 2000.
- Soliloquy (nonfiction), Granary Books (New York, NY), 2001.
- Day (nonfiction), Figures, 2003.
- The Weather (nonfiction), Make Now Press (Los Angeles, CA), 2005.
FURTHER READINGS ABOUT THE AUTHOR:
- Publishers Weekly, June 5, 2000, review of Fidget, p. 91; January 21, 2002, review of Soliloquy, p. 87; July 21, 2003, review of Day, p. 190; June 27, 2005, review of The Weather, p. 56.
- University of Pennsylvania Web site, http://www.upenn.edu/ (September 20, 2005), "Kenneth Goldsmith."
- WFMU Radio Web site, http://www.wfmu.org/ (September 18, 2005), "Kenneth Goldsmith."*
Articles By KENNETH GOLDSMITH
Audio & PodcastsPoetry Off the Shelf
Avant-Garde All the Time
UbuWeb editor Kenneth Goldsmith takes us on a tour.
How the French avante-garde twisted up and bent language, featuring Rimbaud, Apollinaire, the space age poetry of Ilse Garnier, and more.
Punk Versions of Monkey Chants
And other ethnopoetic marvels, including speaking in tongues, throat singers, and sound poetry.
Listening to the far out sounds of 1970's LA, featuring Chris Burden, Paul McCarthy, and the Kipper Kids, among others.
The Sounds of the UK
A wide-ranging survey of British sound poets and artists from the 1960s to the present, featuring Bob Cobbing, Neil Mills, Liliy Greenham, Chirstopher Logue, Ann Laplantine, and more.
The World of Outsiders
Kenneth Goldsmith shares some insane and profane sounds that lie between Avant-Garde and Outsider Art, including recordings by Jim Roche, Robin Kahn, and Sean Landers.
"There's No Creativity, There's Just Decisions"
Kenneth Goldsmith talks flarf, conceptual writing, and poetry in the age of the internet. Plus, poems by Hailey Leithauser, Sandra Beasley, Tim Dlugos, and Amy Beeder.
LIFE SPAN 1961–