Four questions about asemic writing, #10: Christopher Skinner

  1. Do you think the practice of asemic writing is something different from visual poetry? Or a part of it?

They are more likely to be different sides of the same coin. The very nature of asemic art makes it impossible to separate them from each other, and whatever one person decides what ‘is’ and what ‘isn’t’ asemic, there will be many who will disagree.


  1. Asemic texts appeared often here and there over the course of the 20th century. Then, at the very beginning of the 21st, it seemed that a consistent part of artists/writers, all over the world, started focusing on it. It isn't the occasional appearance of asemics in a wider context of art, but it seems now a specific practice or current. Do you agree?

It is more likely to be related to the rapid development of the internet and the low cost of self-publishing, rather than anything specifically to do with asemic art. We have more opportunity to share, discover and collaborate with like-minded individuals than ever before. I don’t believe it to be a specific practice; there are some very prolific asemic artists and enthusiastic appreciators around, but my impression is that it is all fragmented, personal and relatively sporadic.


  1. Some authors think it can be said that something like an actual asemic “movement” is rapidly (or slowly?) growing. Do you think so? Or do you think there’s simply a wide constellation of different individuals, far from being defined a movement?

Same answer as the previous question, really. There is certainly a ‘community’ of asemic artists out there, many of which are collaborating and promoting new works in a variety of formats. A movement would suggest that there is some underlying aim, collective values and organized identity. My experience has been quite the opposite; many people doing their own thing, pleased that there are others with similar tastes and approaches, affording them the confidence to publish and promote their work together and solo.


  1. Anthologies, exhibits and web pages collect very different kinds of asemic works. Some of them resemble scribbles and calligraphy, so they fit the definition of “writing”. Others do not, since they include recognizable letters and symbols, or abstract art. Do you think asemics can include these areas or not?

Again, linked to the previous answers, it will be difficult to define the boundaries of asemic work and there will always be some whose views differ from whatever is presented. Such is the nature of asemic art. Personally, I like to see a variety of approaches presented together. It is up to the viewer whether to like, appreciate or value them; it is the core of how we develop our tastes and opinions as we see and judge different works in any context.


thanks to Christopher Skinner ||

read all the other authors' answers at

By posting a comment, you agree to's privacy policy.