(1924 – 1992), United Kingdom

Dom Sylvester Houédard Biography

Widely recognised as one of the leading theorists and outstanding international practitioners of concrete poetry, Dom Sylvester Houédard (1924–1992) is firmly rooted in Lisson Gallery's early history, with his first solo exhibition held at the gallery during its inaugural year in 1967. A practicing Benedictine priest and noted theologian, Houédard, also known by his initials 'dsh' or 'the Dom,' wrote extensively on new approaches to art, spirituality and philosophy, and collaborated with artists such as Gustav Metzger, Yoko Ono and John Cage. His works that often incorporate language and known as 'typestracts,' (dsh's friend Edwin Morgan coined this term a combination of 'typewriter' and 'abstract', are made with the use of ubiquitous ink ribbons blue, black and red), are made using an Olivetti Lettera 22.

Read More

Born Pierre-Thomas-Paul Joseph in 1924 in Guernsey and educated in Rome and Jesus College Oxford, Houédard worked as a military intelligence officer during the war, before joining the community at Prinknash Abbey in Gloucestershire in 1949, becoming ordained as a Benedictine monk a decade later. Houédard OSB (Order of Saint Benedict) went on to help introduce concrete poetry to Britain in 1961, exploring its links to cybernetics and Wittgenstein's linguistic theory. He was literary editor of the Jerusalem Bible from 1961–66 and founded the Gloucestershire Ode Construction Company in 1967. As well as publishing prodigiously and lecturing at the Royal College of Art and the Destruction in Art Symposium (DIAS) among other venues, he showed his work at Lisson Gallery, London, UK (2018; 1967-70); Kurimanzutto, New York, USA (2018); Lower Green, Norwich, UK (2018); Richard Saltoun, London, UK (2017); NUCA Gallery, Norwich, UK (2010); Institute of Contemporary Arts (ICA), London, UK (2009, 1965); Victoria & Albert Museum (V&A), London, UK (1971); Museum of Modern Art, Oxford; Laing Art Gallery, Newcastle, UK (1972). He refocused on religion for the last ten years of his life, as an infirmarian, and died, aged 67, on January 15, 1992.

Text courtesy Lisson Gallery.

Dom Sylvester Houédard
featured artworks

View 16 More
elitist observation by Dom Sylvester Houédard contemporary artwork works on paper
Dom Sylvester Houédard elitist observation, 1971 Typed page
29.8 x 21 x 0.1 cm
Lisson Gallery Contact Gallery
live all the immediately while wafted available to the even waterlogged ground by Dom Sylvester Houédard contemporary artwork works on paper
Dom Sylvester Houédard live all the immediately while wafted available to the even waterlogged ground, 1967 Vinyl plastic laminate (newspaper cuttings, miscellaneous material and PVC plastic)
38.7 x 13.7 cm
Lisson Gallery Contact Gallery
pin-wash Stones straight om by Dom Sylvester Houédard contemporary artwork works on paper
Dom Sylvester Houédard pin-wash Stones straight om, 1967 Vinyl plastic laminate (newspaper cuttings, miscellaneous material and PVC plastic)
26.5 x 28.5 cm
Lisson Gallery Contact Gallery
For ew by Dom Sylvester Houédard contemporary artwork painting, works on paper, drawing
Dom Sylvester Houédard For ew, 1964 Ink typed on paper
10.5 x 17 cm
Richard Saltoun Gallery Contact Gallery
Typestract 200464 by Dom Sylvester Houédard contemporary artwork painting, works on paper, drawing
Dom Sylvester Houédard Typestract 200464, 1964 Ink typed on paper
10.5 x 17 cm
Richard Saltoun Gallery Contact Gallery
Typestract - 180764 (Blue) by Dom Sylvester Houédard contemporary artwork painting, works on paper, drawing
Dom Sylvester Houédard Typestract - 180764 (Blue), 1964 Ink typed on paper
10 x 16.5 cm
Richard Saltoun Gallery Contact Gallery
Sand Rock Tide by Dom Sylvester Houédard contemporary artwork painting
Dom Sylvester Houédard Sand Rock Tide, 1964 Silkscreen on paper
58.5 x 91.2 cm
Richard Saltoun Gallery Contact Gallery
View 16 More

Dom Sylvester Houédard
recent exhibitions

Dom Sylvester Houédard
represented by

Lisson Gallery contemporary art gallery in Lisson Street, London, United Kingdom
Lisson Gallery Beijing, East Hampton, London, Los Angeles, New York +1
Ocula discover the best in contemporary art icon.
Follow Dom Sylvester Houédard
Stay ahead.
Receive updates on new artworks,
exhibitions and articles.
Your personal data is held in accordance with our privacy policy.
Follow
Do you have an Ocula account?
Ocula discover the best in contemporary art icon.
Get Access
Join Ocula to request price and availability of artworks, exhibition checklists and build a collection of favourite artists, galleries and artworks.
Do you have an Ocula account? Login
What best describes your interest in art?

Subscribe to our newsletter for upcoming exhibitions, available works, events and more.
By clicking Sign Up or Continue with Facebook or Google, you agree to Ocula's Terms & Conditions. Your personal data is held in accordance with our Privacy Policy.
Thank you for joining us. Just one more thing...
Soon you will receive an email asking you to complete registration. If you do not receive it then you can check and edit the email address you entered.
Close
Thank you for joining us.
You can now request price and availability of artworks, exhibition checklists and build a collection of favourite artists, galleries and artworks.
Close
Welcome back to Ocula
Enter your email address and password below to login.
Reset Password
Enter your email address to receive a password reset link.
Reset Link Sent
We have sent you an email containing a link to reset your password. Simply click the link and enter your new password to complete this process.
Login