Tag Archives: Zadie Smith

CELIA PAUL

[Celia Paul’s] story is striking. It is not, as has been assumed, the tale of a muse who later became a painter, but an account of a painter who, for ten years of her early life, found herself mistaken for a muse, by a man who did that a lot. [Self-Portrait] is about many things besides [Lucian] Freud: her mother, her childhood, her sisters, her paintings. But she neither rejects her past with Freud nor rewrites it, placing present ideas and feelings alongside diary entries and letters she wrote as a young woman, a generous, vulnerable strategy that avoids the usual triumphalism of memoir. For Paul, the self is continuous (“I have always been, and I remain at nearly sixty, the same person I was as a teenager…. This simple realisation seems to me to be complex and profoundly liberating”), and equal weight is given to “the vividness of the past and the measured detachment of the present.” — Zadie Smith, 2019

Landscapes and portraiture—self- and otherwise—are the focus of an exhibition of paintings by Celia Paul, who has just published an extensively illustrated memoir.

CELIA PAUL

Through December 20.

Victoria Miro Gallery II

16 Wharf Road, London.

CELIA PAUL—SELF-PORTRAIT

2019, Jonathan Cape.

Celia Paul, from top: Self-Portrait, Early Summer, 2018, oil on canvas; Self-Portrait, 1983, ink on paper; Kate in White, Spring, 2018 (detail), oil on canvas; Room and Tower, 2019, oil on canvas; 2016 photograph of Paul in her London studio by Gautier Deblonde; My Sisters in Mourning, 2015–16, oil on canvas; Last Light on the Sea, 2016; Celia Paul, Self-Portrait (2019), cover image courtesy and © Jonathan Cape; Lucian and Me, 2019, oil on canvas; Painter and Model, 2012, oil on canvas. Images courtesy and © the artist, the photographers, Jonathan Cape, and Victoria Miro.

NICK LAIRD AT THE HAMMER

This week, the poet, novelist, and screenwriter Nick Laird will read from his 2018 collection of poems, FEEL FREE.

(Which is also the title of the recent essay collection by Zadie Smith, who is married to Laird.)

A reception and book signing will follow.

NICK LAIRD

Thursday, May 16, at 7:30 pm.

Hammer Museum

10899 Wilshire Boulevard, Los Angeles.

From top: Nick Laird, image courtesy and © the author and the Hammer Museum; book cover image courtesy and © Faber & Faber; Laird and Zadie Smith at The New Yorker Festival, 2017, courtesy and © the authors and photographer.

EDMUND WHITE ON JEAN GIONO

9781635571172

“Recently I wrote a note to accompany Paul Eprile’s translation of Jean Giono’s MELVILLE, which quickly evolved into a novel that has nothing to do with the historical neurasthenic and queer-leaning Herman Melville and everything to do with Giono himself.

“Giono was deeply influenced by American writers… [He] first discovered Walt Whitman in French [and] later studied the ‘American Homer’ in English. He loved Whitman’s all-embracing egalitarianism and his pantheism, and the first part of Giono’s œuvre obviously owes a debt to this passionate revolutionary figure. In Hill, his first novel, Giono tried to illustrate two very Whitmanesque truths:

‘The first of these truths is that there are people, simple and nude; the other is that this earth fleeced [entoisonnée] with woods… this living earth, exists without literature.’

“Cutting down on metaphor and simile (he could never altogether forego them) must have been painful for Giono, so naturally gifted with that kind of eloquence. As Aristotle suggest in The Rhetoric, metaphor is one of the greatest ornaments of writing but also the one no one can learn.” — Edmund White, The Unpunished Vice

White’s blend of memoir and literary criticism is out now.

 

EDMUND WHITE, THE UNPUNISHED VICE: A LIFE OF READING (New York: Bloomsbury, 2018).

Top image credit: Bloomsbury Publishing.

Above: Edmund White and Zadie Smith at a writers’ festival in Florence, 2017. Image credit: Édouard Louis‘ Twitter.

Below, from left: Bernard Buffet, Jean Giono, and Pierre Bergé in Manosque, June 16, 1950. Image credit: Musée Yves Saint Laurent, Paris.

ÉDOUARD LOUIS IN LOS ANGELES

“It’s strange, but in my childhood, nobody read but we knew that literature was not interested in us…

“There is today on a global scale, with Knausgaard, Ta-Nehisi Coates or Svetlana Alexievitch, a very important movement around the question of literature and truth. How can one use the tools of literature to tell the truth, to say the lived experience?” — Édouard Louis

Louis will be in Los Angeles this week, reading from and discussing (with Steven Reigns) his new nonfiction novel HISTORY OF VIOLENCE.

 

ÉDOUARD LOUIS—HISTORY OF VIOLENCE

Wednesday, October 10, at 7:30

Taper Auditorium, Central Library, 630 West 5th Street, downtown Los Angeles.

See Édouard Louis and Zadie Smith

and Abdellah Taïa and Édouard Louis

Image credit above: Farrar, Straus and Giroux.

Below: Édouard Louis in 2016. Photograph by Frédéric Stucin.

EDWARD ST. AUBYN

A brilliant, autobiographical journey through the darker corners of the British aristocracy—childhood rape, alcoholism, drug addiction, recovery, and what comes next—THE PATRICK MELROSE NOVELS by Edward St. Aubyn are available in one volume with an introduction by Zadie Smith, who favorably compares their author to Oscar Wilde, P.G. Wodehouse. and Evelyn Waugh.

(There’s also a recent mini-series with Benedict Cumberbatch in the title role.)

 

Edward St. Aubyn, The Patrick Melrose Novels (London and New York: Picador).

panmacmillan.com/the-patrick-melrose-novels

PATRICK MELROSE

sho.com/patrick-melrose

Above: Benedict Cumberbatch in Patrick Melrose (2018). Image credit: Showtime.

Image credit below: Picador.

Below: Benedict Cumberbatch in Patrick Melrose (2018). Image credit: Showtime.