Playing with ‘The Rules’: Brian Docherty considers an anthology whose poems could be viewed as case studies in ekphrasis – but also as much more than that.
Emma Lee reviews a handsome anthology of poems inspired by the South Lookout on Aldeburgh Beach
We are delighted to announce Spectrum’s competition, The Spectrum Art Prize. This is a new national award which celebrates the exciting work produced by artists on the autistic spectrum.
Michael Bartholomew-Biggs dips into a collection of ‘lost’ ekphrastic poems by R S Thomas
Pablo Picasso (1881-1973) and Alberto Giacometti (1901-1966) were both sons of artists, both mastered realism at an early age, both left their native countries and both turned up in Paris, where they met for the first time in 1931 and enjoyed a working friendship that flourished until the 1950s.
In the 1930s, as he fled Nazi Germany, Einstein passed through the Belgian port of Ostend, en route to the United States, and met the painter James Ensor. He asked him what he painted, to which Ensor replied “nothing”.
Anyone seeking to be reminded of how we used to work not so very long ago should take the 10-minute tram journey from Birmingham’s newly revamped Grand Central Station to the city’s Jewellery Quarter, where every other shop is a jeweller and the close-knit atmosphere of a neighbourhood once closed to the wider city lingers on.
Established in 2007, the Aimia AGO photography prize, Canada’s optimum award for contemporary photography, was the first major art accolade to hand the general public the responsibility of choosing the winner – although an expert panel has already drawn up the list of contenders.
With otherworldly northern lights, volcanoes and hot springs, Iceland is famously a nation of natural wonders. It also has an extraordinary human wonder in its tradition of sagas, written in Icelandic, when the scholarly world was dominated by Latin, and establishing a tiny nation, in terms of population, as great when measured by its literary contribution.
In his essay Blood in the Matzos, Anthony Burgess called our need to classify art “a dangerous urge”. Burgess viewed the classifying urge as innate, but I believe people yield to it under the pressure to build careers, make money and forge reputations.
D A Prince is intrigued by the methods and the outcome of a poet-artist collaboration between Judith Wilkinson and Ditty Doornbos
Rembrandt, one of the greatest portrait painters of all time, portrayed himself with a feathered beret, as an oriental potentate, with his wife in historical dress and simply as himself. A modern equivalent is British artist Sarah Lucas who depicts herself with fried eggs, a skull and a salmon. You could say it’s a case of the sublime to the ridiculous and yet, the appeal of Rembrandt’s theatre must have been more direct in his day even if it was never aggressive.