When One Hundred Million Million Poems Just Isn't Enough - Chris Joseph
A digital version of Raymond Queneau's ‘One hundred million million poems' using multiple languages (English, French, Spanish, German, Chinese and Greek) with random generation to create over 19 decillion potential variations. The intention, beyond honouring Queneau’s original experimentation, is to highlight the difficulty of reading multilingual creations with knowledge of only one or even a few of these languages.
Queneau was a novelist and poet, and co-founder of Oulipo, a group of writers and mathematicians who create works using a wide variety of contrained writing techniques. His Cent mille milliards de poèmes (1961) was a book containing ten sonnets printed on card, with each line on a separate moveable strip. This allowed any line from the sonnet to be be combined with any of the nine others, giving 1014 (=100,000,000,000,000) different poems.