March 24, 2013

Dirk van Bastelaere

Dirk van Bastelaere [Belgium/writes in Dutch]

One of the leading poets of contemporary Flanders writing, Dirk van Bastelaere was born in 1960. He came into prominence with his award-winning first collection, Vijf jaar of 1984, followed by Pornschlegel en andere gedicten of 1988, a book hotly debated in the Flemish poetry scene. Yet the volume won him recognition as the most important postmodern poet in Flanders, his work highly influenced by US writers such as Gertrude Stein and John Ashbery.
Although some critics dismissed his work as being over-intellectualized, for the younger generation of Flemish poets he became a mould-breaker.
     In 2000, he published Hartswedervaten, which received even further acclaim, and is considered his best book to date, and for which he was awarded the Flemish Culture Prize.
     His most recent collection, Zapruder Stress, appeared in 2005. In Wwwhhoooosshhh of 2001, subtitled, in English, On Poetry and Its Worldly Embodiment, van Bastelaere published a book of essays about poetry, and is currently working on a book of essays on photography and cultural poetics, which include a wide-ranging group of essays from everything from Batman, Cosmopolitan magazine, prostheses, and J. G. Ballard’s Crash.
      The British publisher, Shearsman Books, has published a collection of the poet’s work titled The Last to Leave: Selected Poems in 2005.


 Vijf jaar (Antwerp: Soethoudt and Co, 1984); Pornschlegel en anderere gedichten (Amsterdam: De Arbeiderspers, 1988/reprinted Amsterdam: Atlas, 2002); Diep in Amerika. Gedicten 1989-1991 (Amsterdam: Atlas, 1994); Hartswedervaren. Gedicten (Amsterdam: Atlas, 2000); Wwwhhhoooosshhh (The Opera Ain’t Over Til the Fat Lady Sings) in Peter Ghyssaert, ed. Turkooizen scheepje van verschil: twaalf jonge Vlaamse dicters (Amsterdam: Prometheus, 1997); De wind wit het elders. In praise of Barnett Newman (Ghent: Druksel, 2003); Zparuder Stress (Amsterdam: Atlas, 2005)


The Last to Leave: Selected Poems (Exeter, England: Shearsman Books, 2005)

For a selection of poems by the poet, go here:

No comments: