Ted Joans (July 4, 1928 – April 25, 2003) was a poet, visual artist, and trumpet player. He was a Surrealist who was also associated with the Beat Generation. But, Ted was a true original, and his work defies categorization.
Ted’s artistic work was heavily influenced by jazz rhythms. A former roommate of Charlie Parker’s, Ted coined the phrase “Bird Lives!” upon Parker’s death.
Born in Cairo, Illinois, as a young man Ted moved to New York, where he became associated with the Bohemian scene in Greenwich Village. He met, and maintained close friendships with, a number of Beat Generation figures, including Jack Kerouac and Allen Ginsberg.
Proclaimed a Surrealist by André Breton, Ted’s poetry and visual art are important contributions to Surrealism.
Ted traveled widely, reading his poetry in nearly every African country, and living in various European & African countries, as well as in the United States. At the time of his death in 2003, he was living in Vancouver, BC, Canada.
This is just the briefest biographical sketch. To learn more, read on.