How do artists work with words, and writers with images? Is the gallery today the space for avant-garde literary exercises to be realized and experienced? How has the relationship between literature and the visual arts manifested in both forms? This full-day symposium – hosted by Ben Eastham – will trace the history of the relationship between art and literature and review the way the two disciplines, and associated infrastructures, have supported each other over the past hundred years and – increasingly – today.
The day will comprise a number of lectures, presentations, screenings and readings with speakers working across the boundaries of art and literature. From the “collapse” of literature into the visual arts to the art world’s recent infatuation with poetry, to the conditions for publication of experimental literature today, the symposium will provide a critical overview of visual arts’ engagement with the written word and vice versa.
Introduction by Ben Eastham
‘On the art world as home of literary experiment’ by Deborah Levy
‘The Wandering Bourgeois’ by Tom McCarthy
‘Is the gallery now the home of experimental publishing?’ Panel discussion with Jess Chandler (Test Centre), Anna Gerber (Visual Editions) and Catherine Hamilton (Swimmers)
‘Art and the essay’ by Brian Dillon
‘On collaboration’, screening of Everyday Performance Artists followed by conversation and Q&A with Adam Thirlwell
‘Art Hearts Poetry’ by Holly Pester and Nisha Ramayya
Readings and performances presented by Ben Eastham
Ben Eastham is a writer based in London. He is Co-founder and Editor of The White Review, Assistant Editor of art-agenda.com, and Associate Editor of South as a State of Mind, the documenta 14 journal. His writing on contemporary art and literature has featured in frieze, the Times Literary Supplement, the London Review of Books and The New York Times. He has written catalogue essays for Ed Ruscha and Camille Henrot, among others. He is the co-author with Katya Tylevich of ‘My Life as a Work of Art’ (Laurence King, September 2016).