John Giorno John Giorno Live


Conceived by the artist Ugo Rondinone, the I Love John Giorno exhibition at the Palais de Tokyo is the first large-scale retrospective dedicated to the life and work of the American poet John Giorno, born in New York in 1939. In conjunction with the Festival d’Automne, the John Giorno Live evening provides an opportunity for audiences to sample the work of this major counter-culture figure from 1960’s America, and whose iconic presence figured in the early films of Andy Warhol. Taking his inspiration from Pop Art and its free appropriation of images, Giorno breathed new life into the “found-poem” genre and captured the essence of popular language found in advertising, television, newspapers and on the streets.  

This event invites us to experience, in a unique way, Giorno’s broad repertory of performance-based works. Giorno himself hailed poetry as a virus capable of spreading to the greatest possible number of people. In parallel to his performance of a selection of poems, some of which have never been published, Giorno has created a live soundscape specially for the occasion, consisting of poems recorded live in the studio with Bob Moog, the mythical inventor of the synthesizer. This presentation will be accompanied by the continuous projection of films about the American poet, including Poetry In Motion (1982) by Ron Mann, No Accident (1995) by Michel Negroponte, and Loving Kindness (1995) by Peter Ungerleider.

For the duration of the I Love John Giorno exhibition, a team on roller-skates will be handing out poems by Giorno to visitors and passers by, a throwback to his participation in the Street Works performances, initiated in 1969 by a group of artists and poets on the streets of New York.