Art and Literature
John Ashbery, Anne Dunn, Rodrigo Moynihan, and Sonia Orwell
Nos. 1–12 (1964–67).
Very high style, intense, and European, following on the heels of Locus Solus, Art and Literature was published in Switzerland by the painters Anne Dunn and Rodrigo Moynihan, and primarily edited by poet John Ashbery, who relocated to New York from Paris soon after the journal was launched. (Sonia Orwell—George Orwell’s widow—was a contributing editor to the first six issues.) Ashbery produced a remarkable blend of poetry, fiction, and commentary dealing not only with the world of poetry and literature, but with avant-garde art, theater, film, performance, and installation art. In addition, Art and Literature ranged geographically and chronologically over a wide variety of literatures. Issue 11 alone, for instance, included Rilke, Kenneth Koch and James Schuyler, Iannis Xenakis (Greece), Witold Gombrowicz (Poland), Cyril Connolly (England), Caspar David Friedrich (Germany), Miroslav Holub (Czechoslovakia), Gunter Kunert (East Germany), and Adrian Stokes (England). The last and twelfth issue of Art and Literature has a section dedicated to Frank O’Hara as well as a portfolio of work by Lucian Freud, a group of prose poems by Francis Ponge, a long poem by Barbara Guest, minimalist work by Aram Saroyan and Clark Coolidge, and a portfolio of work by sculptor Ronald Bladen with an essay by Bill Berkson. A remarkably integrated magazine despite its wide range of subjects and sympathies, Art and Literature was an elegant showcase for important new work from a variety of sources.