Lady Margaret Hall, The Library
Sunday, 19 May 2013
Friday, 10 May 2013
I have been appointed as a Words Across Northumberland Writer in Residence.
Stories from the Flood places a creative writer in two Northumbrian libraries, Morpeth and Rothbury. Both towns were affected by catastrophic flooding in 2008. Susan Fletcher (in Morpeth) and I (in Rothbury) will spend time meeting staff and visitors and creating a body of work on the themes of flooding and climate change. Having researched and written on these issues during recent residencies in Denmark and Greenland, I look forward to bringing a global perspective on climate change to the region of the UK where I grew up.
I will make an initial mobile library tour of the area on Wednesday 19 June, and will be meeting the public in Rothbury Library on 20 and 21 June.
Tuesday, 7 May 2013
On Tuesday 23rd April the annual world book night collaboration began. Since 2010 I have been celebrating world book night with Sarah Bodman and fellow book artists, including Angie Butler and Natalie McGrorty. The events have seen new books generated from novels by Patricia Highsmith, Douglas Coupland and Donna Tartt. This year, the chosen text by Raymond Carver was more minimal in two senses - firstly, it was short story rather than a novel, and secondly, as the title itself suggests, it concerns A Small Good Thing.
This year, hot on the heels of organising Bristol Artists' Book Event, Sarah Bodman co-ordinated the event and dinner, with a collaborative text that contained contributions of small, good things from book artists around the world. A film was produced (in homage to Robert Altman's Short Cuts - itself inspired by Carver's stories). The film and full details of the project can be viewed on the UWE bookarts website, where there is also a free, downloadable version of the texts. These can be printed at home to create a zine, and there's even a blank page provided to fill in with a small, good thing of your own to make the book unique.
Monday, 6 May 2013
John Cumming Ditty Box (2011)
My review of the exhibition Voyage: sea journeys, island hopping and trans-oceanic concepts, curated by Imi Maufe and Rona Rangsch at Künstlerhaus Dortmund, Germany can now be read online in the Huffington Post.
Tuesday, 16 April 2013
Saturday, 6 April 2013
The new issue of Stravaig, the Journal of the Scottish Centre for Geopoetics is out now, and available for download here. The issue, with the theme of Coast to Coast, includes some works written during my residency in Siglufjörður, Iceland. There's also a riddle, which came about while I was translating another riddle from the Anglo-Saxon Exeter Book for an anthology of poems on the theme of water, The Third Thing, which is forthcoming from the Old Stile Press.
The image above, by Anthony Ratcliffe, accompanies a review of his exhibition Shoreline and Watershed by Roger Bygott.
Tuesday, 19 March 2013
Foyles has been a mainstay of London's bookshop scene for over 100 years.
Recently, the company announced that their flagship store on the Charing Cross Road would be moving ... next door.
Despite the small distance involved, the move will take some time - much building work is underway to make the new Foyles fabulous. I was fascinated to see that Foyles has commissioned comic artists to tell the story of the bookshop on the hoarding that keeps developments within the new building from curious passers-by. Here's a selection:
'There could be something in this bookselling lark!'
Foyles is founded in the Foyle family kitchen (John Miers)
The first store (John Miers)
Foyles moves to its first premises in Cecil Court,
where they are so busy the police suspect illegal activity
Christina Foyle in Russia
Foyles began a series of book clubs, including the Catholic Book Club,
to which the Pope belonged (under a pseudonym)
Thefts from Foyles were rampant
Richard Burton vs Transport for London
The old Foyles payment system
The hoardings are picking up graffiti as the days pass but you can see the full series in their original condition here.