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Armin Senser | Residency

South Africa | Literature

February - April 2020 — Literature

Armin Senser is one of the artists awarded a 2020 Pro Helvetia Studio Residency and will be in residence at the Ansteys building in Johannesburg from February to April 2020.

Swiss writer and poet Armin Senser will be on residency in Johannesburg from February until May. During his time in the city, he says that he intends to write a book: “I will write a book about architecture. It will be autobiographical. My childhood in Biel, Switzerland, will be the starting point. And Johannesburg will be the setting. But nothing is determined. Besides our hope.”

Born in Biel (Switzerland) in 1964, Armin studied philosophy, German philology and linguistics in Bern. Since 1998 he has lived in Berlin, Germany, where he works as poet, translator, playwright, and essayist. He published his first volume of poetry called Grosses Erwachen in 1999, for which he was awarded the Lyric Debut Prize. He is co-publisher of the anthology Literatur der deutschsprachigen Schweiz (German literature of Switzerland). His poetry depicts metaphysical voyages through landscapes from Lissabon to the Alps or through literary history from Shakespeare to Vergil, from Schiller to Robert Frost, from Nietzsche to Valloton. He does not work to a schema of rhymes or rhythms, instead composing his poems in a type of lyrical prose that always begins with a particular image or feeling. His most recent volume Sensus (2016) reflects on the nature of human failure and describes the slow return to life that follows such missteps.

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