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The ‘review’ is one manifestation of what happens when language leans into art. Here, the review, considered in its broadest sense as a response sheared of preconceived expectations, prescriptions or limitations, becomes a means of charting what language can lend to art’s (often) non-verbal modes of expression, articulation and meaning. It registers, too, the supports, inclinations and structures that are lent back in turn.

This series will probe and parse the reciprocities that can be found, cultivated and rendered between art and writing. Over the coming weeks, several writers will respond to artworks or exhibitions they have encountered in Scotland. While all of the writing stems from art, having roots in the visuality and materiality of its forms, each writer brings their own writerly tendencies to their texts. These texts also reveal what these writers tended towards and then tended to with words, as one might tend to crops or the growth of a garden, also our parks, in bloom. One might think of terrain. Of fields. These are maps and mappings. Outlines, furrows and tracks. Traced, drawn and chiselled out.

Together, these writings will create an anthology of sorts. Anthology, derived from the Greek anthos ‘flower’ + -logia ‘collection,’ originally referring to the ‘flowers’ of verse but which one might also call a bouquet. A bouquet, that aesthetic and sensory arrangement of a ‘picked’ selection, often gifted, brought inside and displayed in order to brighten the everyday of our interior spaces—given a vessel that creates conditions for lasting longer, each individual pick placed in appealing relation to the other. Much as words must be arranged. Much as these texts, gathered and assembled, constitute a kind of offering. Much as they tell of that which stood out and warranted a showing elsewhere, here. Each a response, attentive, tender and fruitful.


The series was completed on 9 September 2022.