LEX ICON by Salette Tavares
For the first time appearing in English translation, the poems in LEX ICON present everyday objects through the lens of modern art and abstraction. The habitual uses of objects that these poems study point to the inherent philosophical content of the human capacity to produce, or poiesis. Much as abstraction in its representation of things as pictorial patterns at times distils the geometrical shape of an object by shedding its function, Tavares’ poems accomplish this distillation through language. In this way, LEX ICON connects this writer’s earlier poetry with her graphic sculptural poems. It foregrounds insights about human sociality, labor, and domesticity that dwell in household objects linked to the most bare necessities; and yet, it also presents them as almost mystical artifacts that partake of some unnamed ritual.