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Guillaume Apollinaire (1880 - 1918)

Lifespan: 1880 - 1918

Related: absurdism - Dada - surrealism - modern art - hidden and secret libraries - erotic fiction - French literature - art criticism - concrete poetry

The Eleven Thousand Rods (1907) - Guillaume Apollinaire
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In 1917, Guillaume Apollinaire coined the term surrealism [Aug 2006]

"From the imaginative standpoint Fantômas is one of the richest works that exist." --Guillaume Apollinaire

Guillaume Apollinaire called the Marquis de Sade the freest spirit that has yet existed.

Guillaume Apollinaire was the first, true herald of surrealism. By the time of his death, in 1918, he had made it possible for the never-ending search for the bizarre in literature to be viewed not just as an amusing but pointless game, but as a true method, a metaphysical quest, reflecting more profound concerns and higher literary ambitions.

Guillaume Apollinaire radicalized the Baudelairean poetic exploration of modern life in evoking planes, the Eiffel Tower and urban wastelands, and he brought poetry into contact with cubism through his "Calligrammes", a form of visual poetry.


Guillaume Apollinaire (August 26, 1880 - November 9, 1918) was a poet, writer, and art critic.

Born Wilhelm Albert Vladimir Apollinaris de Kostrowitzky/Kostrowicki in Rome, Italy, he was one of the many artists who worked in the Montmartre district of Paris during an era of great creativity. His mother was Angelica Kostrowicki, a Polish countess, his father possibly Francesco Flugi d”Aspermont, a Swiss-Italian aristocrat who disappeared early from Apollinaire's life. Apollinaire was one of the most popular members of the artistic colony in Montparnasse, where his friends and collaborators during that period were Pablo Picasso, Jean Cocteau, Erik Satie, and Ossip Zadkine.

In 1913 -- together with Fernand Fleuret Louis Perceau -- he also published an inventory of the hidden library of Bibliothèque Nationale Parisian, the so-called L'Enfer [hell].-[1]

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