Chapter 2 is a study of formal allegory in the poetry of Clark Coolidge. It describes Coolidge’s and John Ashbery’s interests in surrealism, then argues that the former’s works from the 1970’s should be read as an on-going allegory for film and photography. It also shows how Coolidge derived constructivist principles from writers like William Carlos Williams and painters like Yves Tanguy. The chapter goes on to argue that Coolidge allegorically transcodes the discourses of poetry and film in a series of seven books written over a ten year period, discussing how he appropriates texts from Robert Smithson and bases his early poetry on Smithson’s discussions of minimalist sculpture and art.
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