Ian Hamilton Finlay: Little Fields, Long Horizons, University of Edinburgh, 13–15 July 2017

Dominic Hale, Daisy Lafarge
2017 Journal of British and Irish Innovative Poetry  
The Ian Hamilton Finlay: Little Fields, Long Horizons symposium, organised by Greg Thomas and Alex Thomson at the University of Edinburgh, sought to explore new critical and interdisciplinary perspectives on Ian Hamilton Finlay (1925Finlay ( -2006)), poet, artist and avant-gardener. The event brought together lifelong friends and dedicated scholars of his work with artists, poets, architects, postgraduate students, and early career academics still in the emergent phases of encountering,
more » ... through, and responding to his art and poetics. The symposium took place over two days, and over three anniversaries, spanning the 219th anniversary of Wordsworth's preliminary composition of 'Lines Composed a Few Miles above Tintern Abbey, On Revisiting the Banks of the Wye during a Tour. July 13 1798', also the 224th birthday of John Clare, and the 228th anniversary of the Storming of the Bastille on the 14th. Given Finlay's fascination with the history, ideology, and legacy of the French Revolution, and his interest in those poets of the English tradition like Wordsworth and Clare variously engaged in responses to Virgilian pastoral, this coincidence was either a case of radical serendipity, or exceptional planning. Thursday 13 th July The first day began auspiciously with a presentation from Nancy Perloff, the curator of Modern and Contemporary Collections at LA's Getty Research Institute, opening a panel on Finlay's relation to and experimentation with concrete poetry which explored the creative exchanges he enjoyed with contemporary practitioners in the 1960s. Her paper compared the work of Finlay with that of the Brazilian concrete poet
doi:10.16995/biip.59 fatcat:zkp2c5ro4jcy5bjyjckksbso3q