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Altagor papers

Call Number: GEN MSS 1466

Scope and Contents

The Altagor Papers, which span from 1930-2009, contain correspondence, personal papers, writings, artwork, printed material, objects, long-playing records, audio tapes, and other papers by or relating to the artist Altagor, also known as Andre Vernier. These materials document Altagor’s writings including drafts of his novels, manifestoes, typewriter poems, symphonic poems, and his most well-known works, “Discours absolu” and “Simonia.”

This collection also contains Altagor’s musical creations including his post-war compositions and scores, as well as designs for his musical instruments and the proto-type of one of them, the “pantaphone.” Notebooks, correspondence, and reel-to-reel tapes document his performances, his creative practice, and his involvement with Lettrism.


  • 1930-2009, undated


Language of Materials

Chiefly in French; some material in English.

Conditions Governing Access

The materials are open for research.

Boxes 17-28 (audiotape reels): Restricted fragile material. Consult Access Services for further information.

Conditions Governing Use

The Altagor Papers is the physical property of the Beinecke Rare Book and Manuscript Library, Yale University. Literary rights, including copyright, belong to the authors or their legal heirs and assigns. For further information, consult the appropriate curator.

Immediate Source of Acquisition

Purchased from Didier Lecointre-Dominique Drouet on the Edwin J. Beinecke Book Fund, 2017.


Organized into thirteen series: I. Novels and Classical Poems, 1930-1960. II. Simonia, 1942-1964. III. Poetic Fragments, 1936-1961. IV. Symphonic Poems and Odes, 1939-1948. V. Metapoesie and Metapoesie Lettrism, 1941-2001. VI. Discours Absolu, 1937-1958, VII. Recordings and Scores, 1943-2009. VIII. Notes, Notebooks, and Uncollected Texts, 1950-1984. IX. Writings, Theories, and Ideas, 1945-2002. X. Drawings and Paintings, 1957-1985. XI. Personal Papers and Photographs, undated. XII. Annotated Books, 1937-1986. XIII. Objects, 1976, undated.


23.25 Linear Feet (33 boxes)

Catalog Record

A record for this collection is available in Orbis, the Yale University Library catalog

Persistent URL


The Altagor Papers, which span from 1930-2009, contain correspondence, personal papers, writings, artwork, printed material, objects, records, audio tapes, and other papers by or relating to the artist Altagor, also known as Andre Vernier.


Altagor, also known as André Vernier (1915-1992), was a novelist, sound poet, and composer, who was often associated with the Lettrism movement. Born in the French province of Lorraine, he worked briefly as a coal miner before turning his hand to writing, musical composition, and art. From the 1930’s until the end of his life, Altagor made objects and musical instruments, drew and painted, made audio recordings of his musical performances, and wrote in a variety of disciplines including poetry.

Processing Information

Collections are processed to a variety of levels, depending on the work necessary to make them usable, their perceived research value, the availability of staff, competing priorities, and whether or not further accruals are expected. The library attempts to provide a basic level of preservation and access for all collections as they are acquired, and does more extensive processing of higher priority collections as time and resources permit.

This collection received a basic level of processing, including rehousing and minimal organization.

Information included in the Description of Papers note and Collection Contents section is drawn from information supplied with the collection and from an initial survey of the contents. Folder titles appearing in the contents list below are often based on those provided by the creator or previous custodian. Titles have not been verified against the contents of the folders in all cases. Otherwise, folder titles are supplied by staff during initial processing.

This finding aid may be updated periodically to account for new acquisitions to the collection and/or revisions in arrangement and description.
Guide to the Altagor Papers
In Progress
by Rosemary K. J. Davis
February 2018
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description note
Finding aid written in English and French.

Part of the Beinecke Rare Book and Manuscript Library Repository

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New Haven CT 06520-8330 US
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New Haven, CT 06511

Opening Hours

Access Information

The Beinecke Library is open to all Yale University students and faculty, and visiting researchers whose work requires use of its special collections. You will need to bring appropriate photo ID the first time you register. Beinecke is a non-circulating, closed stack library. Paging is done by library staff during business hours. You can request collection material online at least two business days in advance of your visit, using the request links in Archives at Yale. For more information, please see Planning Your Research Visit and consult the Reading Room Policies prior to visiting the library.