The Surreal Verb
Ian McMillan presents Radio 3's 'Cabaret of the word'. This week, The Verb is looking at 'The Surreal' with poet Ira Lightman, artist and writer Charlotte Cory and Michel Remy, editor of 'On The Thirteenth Stroke of Midnight: Surrealist Poetry in Britain'.
Michel Remy is Professor of English Literature and Art History at the University of Nice. He is the editor of ‘On The Thirteenth Stroke of Midnight: Surrealist Poetry in Britain’ (Carcanet). Michel believes that surreal is a state of mind, where words rule supreme and have the power to escape from rational logic.
Charlotte Cory has written novels and radio comedy, and she’s also an artist. Her current exhibition at the Bronte Parsonage features images combining Victorian photographs and taxidermy animal heads. Charlotte’s work is inspired by imaging the world for the first generation to be photographed. Charlotte explains how there have been strong reactions to her work. The Exhibition, ‘Capturing The Brontës’ runs until the end of the year.
David Lomas is Professor of Art History at the University of Manchester, and ran the Centre of the Study of Surrealism and its Legacies. David tells us about the history of surrealism, which started with literature, but is now seen as more of an art movement, despite surrealism’s attempts to blur the boundaries between text and images.
Poet Ira Lightman is a Verb regular, who has previously appeared on the programme to discuss subjects such as the word ‘Darkling’, and the letter ‘Q’. For our Surreal Verb, we’ve asked him to come up with a new Surrealist poem. For Ira, surrealism is a ‘meditation to purify your consciousness’, and to write his poem, Ira thought about everything he couldn’t do, then did it anyway.