“Le cadavre exquis boira le vin nouveau”
These were the words written in Paris on a piece of paper in 1925 at the 54 rue du Chateau. A cartel of renegade thinkers gathered nearly nightly with the shared and expressed objective of liberating the subconscious for the good of all humanity and experiencing as much pleasure as possible along the journey. They succeeded. The phrase translates to “The exquisite corpse will drink the new wine” and appeared with a number of other phrases generated by the process of Spontaneous Automatism by a group of creative thinkers who were thinking together. A Surrealist tool of conscious and subconsciousness unification was born and named; she is now entering societal puberty.
The practitioners of Surrealism believed that since the Exquisite Corpse poems represented a work of art that required more than one mind, they had discovered a way of fully tapping into and liberating the mind’s ‘relativistic and creative capacity’ while holding the rational intellect in abeyance. In the final analysis, Sigmund Freud and Jaques Lacan, two of the most influential thinkers in the history of western civilization, would confirm this as fact. Museums all over the world have on display examples of their creative triumph, while history has many illustrations of the abeyance being unleashed.
A few phrases selected by Andre’ Breton in 1948 that verbally illustrate the power and potential of the subconscious.
The completely black light lays down day and night the powerless suspension to do any good.
The anaemic young girl got the waxed mannequins turned red.
Monsieur Poincaré, if you want, kisses on the mouth, with a peacock feather,
in an ardour I never saw before, the late Monsieur de Borniol.
The made-up shrimp hardly enlightens some double kisses.
Rue Mouffetard, love-shivering, amuses the chimera who shoots at us.
The very moved Pathos, thanks singing the bullet of chopped vetiver between Line and Prâline.
Caraco is a beautiful whore: lazy as a doormouse and glass-gloved for doing nothing,
she strings pearls with the turkeys of the farce.
Surrealist Poems Excerpted From: “Le Cadavre Exquis: Son Exaltation”
Catalogue: La Dragonne, Galerie Nina Dausset, Paris,
Thank you for sharing this, I’ve read of it many years ago, and I was delighted to find this site, and this post!