Courtesy of the University of St Andrews Library, Copyright Norman McBeath
Simonides: what remains
Sep 6, 2013 – Sep 30, 2013
Simonides: what remains showcases poet Robert Crawford’s translations of poetic fragments by the ancient Greek poet Simonides. On view will be tiny texts— versions of epitaphs and poetic fragments—written thousands of years ago. The writing, which remembers those fallen in battle, is accompanied by photographer Norman McBeath’s striking black-and-white images. McBeath’s photographs reflect Simonides’ work at an oblique angle; studies of what remains in a landscape.
Simonides: what remains is loaned to the Poetry Foundation by the Special Collections Division of the University of St Andrews Library in association with the Scottish Poetry Library.
Robert Crawford was born in Bellshill, Lanarkshire, in 1959, and grew up in Cambuslang. His first collection of poems, A Scottish Assembly, was published in 1990, and his most recent collection is Full Volume (2008). His versions of Latin poems by George Buchanan and Arthur Johnston were published in his book Apollos of the North (2006), and between 2011 and 2013 his Scots versions of Simonides were exhibited in the United Kingdom and the United States alongside photographs by Norman McBeath, as well as appearing in the Easel Press volume, Simonides (2011). Professor of Modern Scottish Literature and Bishop Wardlaw Professor of Poetry at the University of St Andrews, he is a Fellow of the British Academy and of the Royal Society of Edinburgh.
Norman McBeath is a photographer and printmaker. The National Portrait Galleries in London and Edinburgh have over fifty of his portraits in their permanent collections. His work has been shown as part of exhibitions at the Leica Gallery in New York, the National Portrait Gallery in London, the Scottish National Portrait Gallery in Edinburgh, the Royal Scottish Academy in Edinburgh and the Royal Academy of Arts in London. A number of award-winning writers have produced original work in response to his photographs including Jeanette Winterson (Oxford at Night, 2006), A. L. Kennedy (Evidence, 2006) and Janice Galloway (City Stories, 2008). His collaboration with the former Professor of Poetry at Oxford, Paul Muldoon, Plan B (Enitharmon Press, 2009) was exhibited at the Edinburgh Art Festival.