Lies Van Gasse


Intelligibility is overrated. Who wants clear texts, should read manuals and leaflets instead of poetry. It is not the task of a poem to be easy to understand. I see a lot of poets who showcase the workings of their minds or who teach their audience that there are other ways to deal with the language than the path from a to b. Literature should open the windows, breathe, show how different brain worlds can coexist.

Lies Van Gasse

Lies Van Gasse (1983) is a Flemish poet and artist. After numerous publications in journals, her debut collection Hetzelfde gedicht steeds weer (The same poem over and over again) was published in 2008. This was followed by Brak de Waterdrager (Broke the Water Carrier) (2011), M (2012, bibliophile edition) and Wenteling (Revolution) (2013).

Van Gasse introduced the genre of the graphic poem, a mixed format of words and images, into the Dutch-speaking region. In 2010, her first graphic poem, Sylvia, was published followed later by Zand op een zeebed (Sand on a sea bed) (2015). Not only does she combine words and images in her graphic poems, but she also makes use of the uniqueness of the genre to enter into a poetic dialogue with fellow authors. In 2011, together with Peter Theunynck, she created an adaptation of his debut collection, Waterdicht (Waterproof). Together with Annemarie Estor, in the period 2009-2013, she set up a multidisciplinary project around the figure of Caspar Hauser that resulted in a book, an exhibition and a multimedia show. Her performance in a Mongolian poetry festival was given shape in Een stem van paardenhaar (A voice of horsehair) (2014), which she created together with Bas Kwakman.

Lies Van Gasse’s work was awarded the Prize of the Province of East Flanders and her graphic work has already been exhibited in very many places.

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