“Herodiade” by Ksenia Gaikova


“Herodiade” by Ksenia Gaikova (sound poem)

As basis of this sound poem was taken a passage from “Herodiade” by Stephane Mallarme. Herodias was a princess of the Herodian dynasty of Judaea during the time of the Roman Empire. In the Gospels of Matthew and Mark, Herodias plays a major role in John the Baptist’s execution, using her daughter’s dance before Antipas and his party guests to ask for the head of the Baptist as a reward.

But the important thing is that the Mallarme’s goal was not to describe the famous biblical story, but to embody the new poetics of “drawing impressions”. He began the Herodiade at the age of 22 and worked on it for the rest of his life. The poem was primarily a working out of Mallarme’s aesthetics. The ideas about language, beauty, and art which he developed in this poem had an enormous influence on late-nineteenth century literary avant-gardes.

Two traditional female types, “piquant-passionate” and “soft-gentle” , pass through the poet’s entire work. In Mallarme, they are related to the sun and to water. The “water” beginning is associated with the motif of a mirror, water surface and azure.

The main image of the poem is a mirror. Hence the special type of cipher. Author used substitution cipher called “atbash”. This cipher consists in replacing each letter with another letter that is in the alphabet at the same distance from the end of the alphabet as the original letter is from the beginning. As if each letter is mirrored by its pair. There are several fragments of sacred texts in the Bible that are encrypted using this system. It turns out that this text can also be a fragment of scripture.

The audio reproduction of this poem is distinguished by the fact that the stress and syllable for the most part coincide with the original, despite the fact that the vowels in the Russian alphabet are not symmetrically located relative to the central “п”. Also some voice effects precede and remain after words as shadows and endless reflections in the mirror.

The cold and virgin Herodias is similar to Pure poetry, but completely devoid of creative inspired impulse. So this sound poem was created only by reason, cold estimation and soulless technology.




Lezhnina’s works on sound poetry https://drive.google.com/open?id=1DVmMGSoHFAuiYpoOiM8I7AwkQ5STSDva


фото (1)At the beginning of  XXth century the experiment with form and color becomes one of the way of art development. But at the same time another means of expressiveness in the art of early avant-garde becomes the experiment in synthesis of arts and interaction of various visual forms. Worlds become one of the methods of such expression in paintings. The introduction of text into artworks  leads to the revival of the genre of visual poetry.

The artwork “Bottle” combines text and artistic image. Both they create a visual image, where color, form and world are equally important in understanding the meaning of the artwork. The bottle refers to the image of vessel as very important cultural symbol. It has always been connected with female beginning, but at the same time with introversion, facing inside, restraint. But vessel is just a shell, and there is always something inside of it. It could be water, wine, milk, blood etc. It could be full or empty. Bottle is also very popular object in the art of early avant-garde. It was often used in the modernist art to study and experiments with form. It allowed the futurists to unfold themselves in space, and the suprematists to simplify. The artwork “Bottle” explores the meaning of this object. The text is about  symbology, worlds can be interpreted by everyone in different way. Color highlights symbolic meaning. Both they emphasize the form.



The term of concrete poetry is modern but its roots can be traced as far back as ancient Greece. Examples include poems written is the shape of wings or an egg. Since then knowledge and technologies slowly gave concrete poetry boundless possibilities. In the 20th century concrete poetry merged with other artistic activities creating sound poetry, visual poetry and typewriter art.

Byzantine poem is somewhat my characterization of myself, my personality. It should be seen as a beautiful journey to self discovery or self definition. Poetry is a unique type of expression that gives the poet a chance to uncover a secret, hide something behind his words or tell something by the poems’ shape alone. Byzantine is an attempt to illustrate a twirl of emotions that forms a persons’ character, something that he or she does not necessarily want to show to others. Concrete poetry is a departure from the world of real tangible things into the world of meanings and feelings of the poet.



      1. complicated or difficult to understand (Cambridge Dictionary)
      2.characterized by deviousness or underhand procedure (Oxford Dictionaries)






make art

make art

Visual Poetry

chequeТекст. Лежнина

“THE SUN” by Ksenia Gaikova


This poem can be attributed to visual poetry. This is a kind of poetic text, in which an important role is assigned to the graphic depiction of the verse and the use of special tracing elements. The appearance of the text, as a rule, carries an additional semantic load, which is incorporated into the general meaning of the poem. Works of this genre are at the crossroads of literature and traditional art (painting, graphics).

Specifically, this poem is depicted in the form of the sun. But the sun is not like a planet, I mean a round one. No, it is painted the same way as in children’s drawings – a circle, and a rays from it in all directions. There are twelve rays. Each ray corresponds to one line of the poem. The last line forms a circle. It is repeated many times (which in turn places emphasis on this phrase, highlighting it, and also emphasizes its importance through multiplicity). Different sizes of words form a round shape. The circle here is something entire, perfect. Desire, which is enclosed in it, as it were clearly formulated and formed.

However, not only the graphic image of the poem is important. It is auxiliary and illustrative. The role of the text is not leveled. There is a traditional division of the poetic text into lines in accordance with rhythm and rhyme. They are the same in every line. Rhymes are matched to the word “sun”, which begins and ends the poem. Such epiphany forms a ring composition. It duplicates the visual context. The poetic size is also repeated. These are almost always two stops of anapaste and one stop of the iambic. Many lines are built on the principle of syntactic parallelism. The poem also contains traditional for poetry trails: epithets, comparison, personification, metaphor.

In this connection of a semantic and visual, traditional and avant-garde, childish naive look and a meaningful understanding of the form, a poem was born.