However it is also a way of looking at more recent paintings outside of these movements.
It is closely related to metagraphy - the difference being that metagraphy icorporates texts rather than letters - and in hypergraphy the letter is the dominant form.
This resource will collect some lesson outlines and exercises with which to explore hypergraphy.
Development of term
Hypergraphy is the term that Isidore Isou and the Lettrist movement would use to refer to their paintings which incorpoorated letters, symbols into representational and abstract compositions.
Lettrist hypergraphy and metagraphy
- Metagraphics or post-writing, encompassing all the means of ideographic, lexical and phonetic notation, supplements the means of expression based on sound by adding a specifically plastic dimension, a visual facet which is irreducible and escapes oral labelling. . . .
- Even from my first metagraphic efforts - because examples can be found in The Diaries of the Gods and then more conclusively in the self-portrait and painted photos of Amos - I had noticed that when held up among former 11 objective" or "non-objective" forms my original form was stronger, since it assimilates all the others.
- Experiments on "the test of forms" demonstrate that the particles of the Letterist domain are stronger and more important than the particles of the figurative and non-figurative domains.
- If one places an abstract composition - which is simply a fragmentary purification of the former object - in (or alongside) a figurative structure, this second composition digests the first one - transformed into a decorative motif - and then the whole work becomes figurative. However if one places a letterist notation on (or beside) a realist "form," it is the first one which assimilates the second to change the whole thing into a work of hypergraphics or super-writing.
From Les Champs de Force de la Peinture Lettriste ("The Force Fields of Letterist Painting") (Paris: Avant- Garde, 1964).
In The End of The Age of Divinity, A Situationist Worker outlines the following dimensions that are described by Hypergraphy:
- 3 dimensions of space
- 3 dimensions of time and
- 3 dimensions of value
There is also the further outline of 6 senses where these "trimensions" are multiplied:
- Sight : Hypergraphy
- Sound : Hyperphony
- Smell : Hyperchemy
- Taste : Hyperlinguay
- Touch : Hyperpathy
- Thought : Hyperlogy
Lesson1: Test of forms
To recreate Isou's test of forms we must distinguish between the following 3 forms:
- Create an abstract picture. Add 1 figurative form in this
- Create an abstract picture. Add 1 lettrist form in this
- Create a figurative or realist picture. Add 1 abstract form
- Create a figurative or realist picture. Add 1 lettrist form
- Create a lettrist picture. Add 1 abstract form
- Create a lettrist picture. Add 1 realist form
- Look at these examples of hypergraphy by Isou and Lemaitre
- Can you tell the story?
Writing in hypergraphy
- Take a story/ text
- re-write it without words - only letters
Artists using hypergraphy
|Frédéric Bruly Bouabré AKA Sheik Nadro||
Here is an example from grammeS : by the Ultra Lettrists: