tit_obras.gif (1395 bytes) home_foto03.gif (1268 bytes)

Biographical summary

Born in São Paulo (Brazil) in 1931, poet, translator, literary and music critic. In 1951 he published his first book of poems, O REI MENOS O REINO (The King Minus the Kingdom). In 1952, with his brother Haroldo de Campos and Decio Pignatari, he launched the literary magazine "Noigandres", the origin of the Noigandres Group which initiated the international movement of concrete poetry in Brazil. The second issue of that magazine (1955) contained his series of color­poems POETAMENOS (Minuspoet), written in 1953, and considered the first consistent examples of concrete poetry in Brazil. Verse and conventional syntax are abandoned and the words are rearranged in graphic patterns. sometimes printed in six different colors, under inspiration of Webern's Klangfarbenmelodie. In 1956 he participated in the organization of the First National Exhibition of Concrete Art (Painting and Poetry) in the Museum of Modern Art in São Paulo. His work has since been included in many international exhibitions, as well in world­known anthologies like "Concrete Poetry: an International Anthology", edited by Stephen Bann (London, 1967), "Concrete Poetry: a World View", edited by Mary Ellen Solt (University of Bloomington, Indiana, 1968)," Anthology of Concrete Poetry", edited by Emmet Williams (NY, 1968). Most of his poems were assembled in VIVA VAIA,1979. Other important works are POEMOBILES (1974), CAIXA PRETA (Black Box), 1975, collections of object­poems in collaboration with the graphic artist Julio Plaza, and DESPOESIA, 1994.

As a translator of poetry, Augusto specialized in rendering the work of avant­garde authors like Pound ("Mauberley", "The Cantos"), Joyce ("Finnegans Wake"), Gertrude Stein and cummings, or the Russian Mayakovsky and Khlebnikov, He also translated some of the great "inventors" of the past: Arnaut Daniel and the troubadours, Donne and the metaphysical poets, Mallarmé and the French Symbolists. A first anthology of his work, expanded in several monographies, is VERSO REVERSO CONTROVERSO (1978). Some of his last publications in this field: RIMBAUD LIVRE (Free Rimbaud Book)(1992), RILKE:POESIA­COISA (Rilke: Thing-Poetry)(1994), HOPKINS: A BELEZA DIFÍCIL (Hopkins: The Difficult Beauty) (1997).

As an essayist he is the co­author of TEORIA DA POESIA CONCRETA (Theory of Concrete Poetry) with Haroldo de Campos and Decio Pignatari, 1965, and the author of other books dealing with avant­garde and inventive poetry, like POESIA ANTIPOESIA ANTROPOFAGIA (Poetry AntiPoetry Anthropophagy), 1978, O ANTICRÍTICO (The Anticritic),1986, LINGUAVIAGEM (Languavoyage),1987, À MARGEM DA MARGEM (At the edge of the edge), 1989. With Haroldo and Pignatari he fought for the revaluation of the work of Oswald de Andrade, the leader of Brazilian "Modernistas", and also rediscovered the neglected work of the Brazilian Romantic poet, Sousândrade (1832-1902), a forerunner of modern poetry with his "Wall Street's Hell" (1877) in RE­VISÃO DE SOUSÂNDRADE (Re-vision of Sousandrade) (1964). BALANÇO DA BOSSA (E OUTRAS BOSSAS) (1968-1974) gathered his pioneer studies on Tropicalism and Brazilian Pop Music as well as some of his interventions in the field of contemporary music dealing with Charles Ives, Webern, Schnberg and the Brazilian composers of "Musica Nova". Further essays were collected in MÚSICA DE INVENÇÃO (Music of Invention), 1998, focusing the music and poetry of Cage and the radical works of Varèse, Antheil, Cowell, Nancarrow, Scelsi, Nono, Ustvolskaya and others.

From 1980 on, intensified his experiments with the new media, presenting his poems on electric billboard, videotext, neon, hologram and laser, computer graphics, and multimedia events, involving sound and music, as the plurivocal reading of CIDADECITYCITÉ (with Cid Campos), 1987/1991. Four of his holographic poems (in cooperation with Moyses Baumstein) were included in the exhibitions TRILUZ (1986) and IDEHOLOGIA (1987). A videoclip­poem, PULSAR, with music by Caetano Veloso, was produced in 1984 in an Intergraph high resolution computer station. BOMB POEM and SOS, with music by his son, Cid Campos, were animated in a Silicon Graphic Computer Station of the University of São Paulo, 1992-3. His cooperation with Cid, begun in 1987 resulted in POESIA É RISCO (Poetry is Risk), a CD was launched by PolyGram in 1995 and developed in a multimidia performance with the same title, a "verbivocovisual" show of poetry/music/image, which gained video-editing by Walter Silveira, and has been presented in several cities in Brazil and abroad. An installation assembling his digital poetic animations - CLIP­POEMS -  was shown in 1997 as part of the exhibition Arte Suporte Computador (The Computer as Support for Art), Casa das Rosas. Some of his visual and sound poems can be seen at www.ubu.com.