Peter Lamborn Wilson

Peter Lamborn Wilson (aka Hakim Bey) studied at Columbia University, he traveled extensively in North Africa, India and Asia, and settled in Iran for nearly ten years, undertaking voluminous reading of Islamic and heretical texts and studying the historical and mystical dimensions of Sufism with many of the century’s great Sufi masters. He returned to the United States in the 1980s and began a series of bi-weekly radio broadcasts known as the ‘Moorish Orthodox Radio Crusade’ on WBAI-FM (NYC). He is a member of the Autonomedia collective, and author of dozens of books of poetry, literary and cultural criticism. Presently the author is collaborating with the Woodstock Ec(o)logues Film Collective on a series of films based on his work. Peter Lamborn Wilson lives in the Catskill Mountains in New York.

Statement on Vanishing Art Based on his theoretical work about TAZs, Poetic Terrorism, Green Hermeticism, etc., Peter Lamborn Wilson has recently devised a form of poetry-as-action he calls “Vanishing Art”–i.e., art that exists only in the moment of its disappearance: for example, treasure buried or thrown in water; effigies burnt; sculpture that melts or rots; astral theatre; etc. Each act is deeply immersed in local (Hudson Valley) history, especially of magic and insurrection, and is meant to re-enchant the landscape in which it occurs. The acts cannot be called “performance” or “ritual” but are more definable as temporary landscape installations–influenced by geomantic Hermeticism (including indigenous shamanism and Afro-American Santeria as well as the usual Egypto-Greco-Roman- Qabbbalo-Christi-Sufi-Sino-Indian mixture); plus surrealo-situationist psychogeography, conceptual art, Land Art, and nineteenth century art pompier historicism. The acts disappear but are documented with hand-calligraphed texts/poems, photographs (by PLW et al), archival material, and souvenirs, all contained in Boxes. Also, each act is accompanied by at least one map, a chartomantic ideo-collage or cartolage. (“The map is not the territory”–and yet it is.) In Hermeticism the maps might be called “spells” or “fixes.”