In September I worked with Newcastle Centre for the Literary Arts to create an object box of newly commissioned poems inspired by the paintings and works on paper of Screaming Steel at the Hatton Gallery. The project went through many phases before deciding on the final outcome. It was initially inspired by a Book Apothecary commission I did with Ben Freeth for the Library of Birmingham. Symphony of Atlas was an interactive suitcase depicting the life’s work of 20th Century composer Sir Granville Bantock which used object and sound as a way to tell his story.
I was given access to the personal archive of Linda Anderson whose grandfather and great uncle served in World War One and it was these objects and ephemera that was used as a starting point for the final box of poems. I collaborated with David McClure from Velcrobelly to scan these documents and extract elements which was then used in the final design to produce a range of prints for the poems. We also decided to make some prints on aluminium and present the collection in a screenprinted box.
The poem box was presented at a special poetry event in October with any remaining sets sold in the Hatton Gallery shop. I went down to drop off a second run of boxes last week and most had been sold so if you fancy buying a set (only a tenner) I’d get down sooner rather than later.