UNLIMITED SOBRASSADA: Poetry with the 5 senses

By Joaquín G. Novales. May 16, 2012


Poetry has the value to exceed the senses. To the grammatical meaning of the written word we add ideas and feelings, bombs that reverberate in our brain like an echo and are etched into the walls of our emotional memory. Poets have always exceeded those phantom and formal limits. That’s why verses never run out and always find new channels to break linguistic corsets. Revolution is the best context to shatter limits, because each change will illuminate a new order and will establish other limits to be knocked down in the next change of regime. Today’s revolution is technological and makes us reconsider the medium in which words are registered. Poetry is not only written on paper or walls. It is now app-shaped.

Ubicuo Studio has decided to illuminate the waste land of the App Store and its apps. About a year ago they decided that the books printed by their publishing house Atem Books needed a counterpart for iPad. Since then, they have developed digital versions of several publications. One of the latest creations is Unlimited Sobrassada, an interactive book “written” by the poet Jaume C. Pons Alorda and illustrated by Cristòfol Pons. Unlimited Sobrassada fulfils its task of poetic excess, because it overflows the pages of the printed edition and proposes an active relationship with the reader. Instead of reading pages, you will be able listen to them, instead of scrutinizing them, you will enlarge them, and with a finger, you’ll change the Catalan verses into a different language. Also, the audiovisual language is added to the illustrations and written word like an expressive torrent.



With its evolution, Ubicuo Studio shows a fast understanding of the possibilities of tablets as a medium for creative languages. Apps are more and more complex but they don't lose the reading simplicity we find on paper. They still have to mature but it is very comforting to find proposals like theirs, which embellish the app scene.

To conclude, I’ll take the liberty to make a value judgement that could cause a rash to any rationalist: if Mallarmé were alive, he would create apps.

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