Tate Modern Course

A Language Art: Avant-garde Poetry and Modern Art Led by SJ Fowler

Christian Dotremont, ‘[no title]’ 1975–6
Christian Dotremont, [no title] 1975–6. Tate. © DACS, 2021

Over six weeks, SJ Fowler explores the intersections between the post-war traditions of modern art and avant-garde poetry. Discovering poets and artists from the Tate collection who make use of language, sound, space, printing and writing, this course reveals how these practises are fundamental to both arts.

Sessions are based within the galleries of Tate Modern in the presence of works by Gerhard Richter, Li Yuan-Chia and RB Kitaj, which bring to light some of the great moments in modern art and poetry that have enriched the traditions of both writing and art-making. Each week participants are also introduced to contemporary examples of work inspired by those held in the Tate Collection, as well as encouraged to create and share their own avant-garde poetry and text art in the extraordinary environment of the museum. One session is held at Tate Britain and includes the chance to explore Tate’s Prints and Drawings Rooms.

This course is for people interested in developing their own skills and understanding of experimental poetry and modern and contemporary art practises.

For further information about the weekly sessions, visit SJ Fowler’s website. Notes and handouts will be available once the course begins.


SJ Fowler

SJ Fowler is a poet, artist, curator and vanguardist. He works in the modernist and avant garde traditions, across poetry, fiction, sonic art, visual art, installation and performance. He has published seven collections of poetry, the latest of which is {Enthusiasm} with Test Centre (2015), and been commissioned by Tate Britain, Tate Modern, Liverpool Biennial, Penned in the Margins and the London Sinfonietta. He has been translated into 13 languages and performed at venues across the world, from Mexico City to Erbil, Iraq. He is the poetry editor of 3am magazine and is the curator of the Enemies project.

Tate Modern

London SE1 9TG
Plan your visit


26 October – 30 November 2015 at 18.45–20.45