Joëlle Dautricourt
The Book of the Happy Writing

An artwork of scriptural poetry in Hebrew letters

Exhibition On View May 16 - July 31, 2012

The Hebrew Union College - Jewish Institute of Religion Museum would like to acknowledge the following partners and supporters for our exhibition of The Book of the Happy Writing: Moment Magazine, A.R.I.F. - Association for the Restoration of Jewish Works and Institutions in France, Ruth and Marvin Sackner and the Sackner Archive of Concrete and Visual Poetry, and Evelyn and Bernard Korman.

Sefer ha-Ktav ha-Ashuri, Le Livre de l'Écriture Heureuse © Joëlle Dautricourt. All rights reserved.

Graphic artist and sculptor, Joëlle Dautricourt was born in Paris where she still resides.
She explores Jewish writing and its graphic poetry along two lines: avant-garde modern books and Hebrew typography and calligraphy. Joëlle studied the fundamentals of Judaism and Jewish mysticism with Shmuel Trigano, professor of religious and political sociology at Paris X University Nanterre, and the late Charles Mopsik. Dautricourt studied Classical and Modern Literature at the Sorbonne. She later encountered the avant-garde artistic movements at the Galerie St Petri Archive of Experimental and Marginal Art which was opened by Jean Sellem at Lund in Sweden. In 1979 she began her research by asking the question "what is writing?" and looking at material from the earliest symbols through the newest technology and computer graphics.

In collaboration with Rabbi Pauline Bebe, Dautricourt produced for the Liberal Jewish Community of France graphic works and liturgical works composed only of letters of the Hebrew alphabet. Traced by hand and then scanned or from Hebrew or Yiddish fonts, the letters are the only material used by this artist for both her research and her experiments. The computer, replacing the pen and ink that was used for many years, now offers her new ways of writing. Her latest creation, Le Livre de l'Écriture Heureuse (The Book of the Happy Writing), was inspired by the second verse of Psalm 45: "My tongue is the pen of an expert scribe."

Over the past 30 years she has exhibited in France, Italy, Japan and in the United States. She is in the collection of the Ruth and Marvin Sackner Archive of Concrete and Visual Poetry in Florida. The artist has also delivered voice, tracing, and movement performances, notably at the 1st Grand Palais Book Fair and Georges Pompidou Center ArtistBook Manifesto in 1981 and at the 1st Paris Performances Festival at the Gallery Donguy in 1982. In 1989, she and Sophie Charrier organized a poetic digital theater, "Big Bang Art Inner Mouvement". The Musée d'art et d'histoire du Judaïsme in Paris presented her work Le Livre de l'Écriture Heureuse in 2010.  She has taught at the College of Jewish Studies of the Universal Israelite Alliance and has participated in conferences on the question of writing and the symbolism of the book, as well as its graphic and plastic works.

Photos © Joëlle Dautricourt

Photos © Joëlle Dautricourt

Photos © Joëlle Dautricourt

Joëlle Dautricourt at the opening May 16, 2012

Artist Joëlle Dautricourt discusses her work with attendees during the opening

Joëlle Dautricourt and Nadine Epstein, Editor Moment Magazine

Bernard Korman, Marvin Sackner, Joëlle Dautricourt, Evelyn Korman, Ruth Sackner

Joëlle's talk in the synagogue

Photos © Scott Wynn

Nadine Epstein, Editor Moment Magazine, Andrea Baumann Lustig, President ARIF, Joëlle Dautricourt,
Richard Bernstein, NY Times book critic and former Paris bureau chief, Laura Kruger, curator Hebrew Union
College - Jewish Institute of Religion Museum, Jean Rosensaft, Assistant Vice President For Communications &
Public Affairs for Hebrew Union College

"Moment Magazine" May/June 2012 showcases French artist Joëlle Dautricourt's The Book of the Happy Writing
Nadine Epstein, Editor & Publisher, Washington, DC

The U.S magazine "Moment" puts the work on the front page of
its May/June 2012 issue which devotes to it an eight pages article.

Le magazine américain "MOMENT" consacre sa Une et un article de huit pages
à la promotion de l'oeuvre, et qui constituent le catalogue de l'exposition de New York
au Hebrew Union College-Jewish Institute of Religion Museum, du 16 mai au 31 juillet 2012.



Photos © Joëlle Dautricourt

Joëlle Dautricourt
The Book of Happy Writing

In the avant-gardes continuity of artist book and typography, The Book of the Happy Writing proposes in a play form but rigorous to deploy on the virtual scroll of the computer graphics artist, the wisdom, the intelligence and the knowledge of the scribe.

Composed by a set of twenty-six colour plates, The Book of the Happy Writing appears as a celebration of Jewish scripturality, huge visual poetry fresco on the Hebrew letter under all its space-time.

Being inspired by the rules of traditional hermeneutics as much as language mystic, the work revisits the Jewish written corpus - from the first inscriptions to the medieval manuscripts till the Yiddish press, from the synagogal scroll to the amulets.

In a contemporary visual language, The Book of the Happy Writing renews with the age-old tradition of the copyists of Hebrew whose excellence brings the graphic games humor to the top of scriptural art.
It also inscribes itself in the dimension of marvellous inherent in the Midrash and gives to the dynamics of its own experience of comment the face of a biblical enchantment.

Radiating from a central theme, the verse 2 of the Psalm 45 : " My tongue is the quill of an expert scribe ", The Book of the Happy Writing revives with the original means of the computer tools this peculiarly inspired art of the pages setting and composes an hypertextual score of which the letters are the emissaries.

at Hebrew Union College-Jewish Institute of Religion Museum
One West 4th Street (between Broadway and Mercer Street), Manhattan - New York
Exhibition On View May 16 - July 31, 2012

Copyright © Joëlle Dautricourt, 2024. All rights reserved.
Affiliée à La Maison des Artistes et membre de l'ADAGP et de la Société des Gens de Lettres

All images contained within this website are the copyright of the artist.
Unauthorized use or duplication by any means is prohibited

Retour à la page d'accueil / Home page
Joëlle Dautricourt?
Conférence et vidéo projection, The Book of the Happy Writing, Academy Art Museum, Easton
Exposition Joëlle Dautricourt au Musée d'art et d'histoire du Judaïsme
"Hommage aux lettres hébraïques au MAHJ" par Brigitte Haus
Le Chant des Lettres Hébraïques / The Chant of the Hebrew Letters
Bereshit / Au commencement / In the beginning (Genèse/Genesis, I, 1)
Tehilim: Psaume 104 / Psalm 104
Poésie virtuelle animée / Animated virtual poetry (Psaume/Psalm I, 1)
Vitrail pour une synagogue / Glass window for a synagogue
Revues et livres: Illustrations de couvertures / Reviews and books: Covers illustrations

Nouveau site web / New web site:
Joëlle Dautricourt Artiste Auteure