Jaap BLONK (The Netherlands)
Jaap Blonk (1953, Woerden, the Netherlands) – poet, performer, musician. Started his creative literary and artistic activities in the 1970s. He studied Physics, Mathematics and Music, but has not received any degree. The unwillingness to work in any hierarchical institutions, on the one hand, and the inclination (according to the author) towards some paradoxical activities, on the other hand, urged Blonk to take up musical experiment with the saxophone, jazz compositon and formalistic theatre. Later, under the influence of works by K. Schwitters, Lucebert and A. Arto, his literary and musical likings were focused in the area of the experimental literature and vocal. Trying to adequately realise his creative potential, he established a rock-trio “Braaxtaal” (vocal, percussion, synthesizer), and also an orchestral group “Splinks” that performs his own pieces. He is the author of numerous CD-albums, most of which have been produced at the author’s recording studio “Kontrans,” including such as: Splinks (jazz & improvised music, Kontrans 739, 1993), Braaxtaal (voice/synthesizer/percussion trio, Kontrans 939, 1993), Espeechlos (by Braaxtaal, voice/synthesizer/percussion trio, Kontrans 244, 1997), Consensus (by 13-piece Splinks, 2 CDs, Kontrans 1545, 1999), and also: Flux de Bouche (sound poetry & other pieces for solo voice, Amsterdam: Staalplaat STCD 046, 1993), Vocalor (solo voice, Amsterdam: Staalplaat STCD, 1998) and books of poems Liederen uit de Hemel (accompanied by CD, Amsterdam: PO¨SIE PERDU 4, 1993). As a performer he produced original readings of K. Schwitters and H. Ball’s works Kurt Schwitters. Ursonate (Amsterdam: BVHaast 063, 1986), Six Sound Poems of Hugo Ball. BABA – OEMF (as members are: Blonk, B. van der Putten, P. Meurs, BIMHUIS. Kontrans 844, 1998). Besides solo activities, he collaborated a lot with musicians and various performing groups, including the following ones: M. Gustafsson, M. Zerang, F. Lonberg-Holm, P. Dutton, D. Moss, N. Collins, such groups as – LOOS, Netherlands Wind Ensemble, Ebony Band. He is the author of joint CD-releases: Blonk, Gustafsson & Zerang, improvisors (Kontrans 143, 1996), Blonk, Nijdam & van der Putten, improvisors (Kontrans 343, 1996), First Meetings. With Fred Lonberg-Holm and Michael Zerang (Amsterdam: BUZZ ZZ 76002, 1998). As a sound-poet and a performer (sometimes as a lecturer and trainer) Blonk has participated in numerous festivals and forums of contemporary art and experimental poetry, including such as: documenta 8 (in collab. with H. de Kroon, Kassel, 1987), Agrippa Festival of Contemporary Poetry (Tarascon, 1988), Text-Sound Festival “Hej Tatta Gorem” (Stockholm, 1993), “bobeobi”, Internationales Festival der Lautpoesie (Berlin, 1994), Holland – Indonesia Poetry Festival (Jakarta, 1995), Polyphonix Festival of Direct Poetry (Paris, 1996), “London Musicians” Collective Annual Festival (London, 1996), Festival Internacional de Poesia en Medellin (Medellin, 1997, 1998), Bienal de Poesia Visual (Mexico City, 1998), Musikbiennale Berlin (Berlin, 1999) and many others. Many times he has been invited by educational institutions of various countries to conduct workshops. In recent years he has been actively exhibiting large-sized variants of his experimental poetic scores. Jaap Blonk lives and works in Arnhem (The Netherlands).