"I might have been a painter": John James and the Relation between Visual and Verbal Arts

Leahy, Mark (2010) "I might have been a painter": John James and the Relation between Visual and Verbal Arts. In: The Salt Companion to John James. Salt Books, Cambridge, pp. 195-223. ISBN 9781876857967

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Abstract / Summary

John James’ poetry across the four decades of his collected works shows a continuing interest in, knowledge of, and engagement with visual arts and the visual. His writing makes particular use of / reference to them and this relationship can be described in structural terms, or in terms of a formal parallelism. The poems at moments attempt to perform / act /(re)present the equivalent of the visual art work, at times they describe the visual art work, and at other moments they allude to or make analogy
with visual art. Taking three structural points of focus, the postcard,the line, and the interplay between the linear and colour, this chapter looks at this relationship between the visual and the verbal, and illustrates these headings by reference to James’ writing on or for the artists Tom Phillips, Barry Flanagan, Richard Long, and Bruce McLean. The sense is of an uneasy relationship, that the poet is drawn to qualities in visual art, and strives to present a version of the possibilities of the visual. This striving is articulated through describing or demonstrating that poetic making is a physical material making, and in this
manner is close to aspects of the visual arts.

Item Type: Book Section
ISBN: 9781876857967
Subjects: Writing & Journalism > Literature > English Literature
Arts > Fine Art
Depositing User: Mark Leahy
Date Deposited: 08 Jan 2015 15:21
Last Modified: 13 Oct 2017 16:04
URI: https://repository.falmouth.ac.uk/id/eprint/792


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