Zang tumb tuuum: Adrianopoli ottobre 1912: parole in libertà, Milan: 1914

Bound book
Marquand Library of Art and Archaeology, Princeton University (SAX Rare Books 3132.06.398)
In his Futurist Manifesto of 1909, the Italian poet Marinetti rejected the art and culture of the past and embraced the speed of modern urban life. Zang tumb tuuum is a radical version of free-verse poetry—what Marinetti called “parole in libertà,” words in freedom. To free language from the rules of syntax and punctuation, he experimented with different typefaces in various sizes and colors and unusual layouts. Zang tumb tuuum, written in response to Marinetti’s experiences as a reporter during the First Balkan War, is also a sound poem; in performance, it recreates the sounds of gunfire and grenades. The book was a mass-produced paperback, a format that rejected the traditional handcrafted aesthetic of the artist’s book and introduced a new dynamic between image and text.