Shakespeare on Sale/Tolkien Film/New Book from Award-Winner – Poetry News Roundup April 24th

Today we take a look at a Shakespeare inspired painting that is to go on sale, the upcoming film on the life of J.R.R. Tolkien and the new poetry book from an award-winning author.

Sotheby’s to Offer Ode to Shakespeare for Sale

Yesterday marked the day that is commonly accepted by scholars of the bard to be William Shakespeare’s birthday, and Sotheby’s made an interesting announcement.

They have announced that they will be offering up the ode to Shakespeare by Edward Hopper. The New York cityscape, which is titled Shakespeare at Dusk, is a depiction of the statue of Shakespeare that is located in Central Park. The painting is estimated to fetch somewhere between $7-$10 million.

Hopper painted the iconic oil painting of the statue in 195. It was a part of a series of paintings of New York that were created while he was studying under Robert Henri, the great Realist artist. Hopper was known to be a lover of literature, and some of his works contain the odd reference to his own poetry.

His wife’s diaries make a note of his appreciation for the bard. They even suggest that while he posed for paintings that his wife created, he, in fact, read works by Shakespeare to her. He also read works by T.S Eliot and Villons Ballade des Dames du Tempes Jadis.  

Sotheby’s believe that the work is suggestive of a considerable influence that Shakespeare had on Hopper’s work. In particular, the description from Sonnet 73 of the autumnal twilight.

In the last couple of years, there has been a resurgence of interest in works by Hopper.  One of his significant works sold last year for $91.9 million which was significantly more than the previous high one of his pieces of work had received.

The Tolkien Estate does not Endorse Upcoming Film

It is just a few short weeks until the newest Tolkien movie, which will star Nicholas Hoult, and the estate of J.RR. Tolkien has released a statement in which they say that they do not endorse any of the content of the film or the film itself.

The film looks at the early life of the writer, his friendships, and the bonds he created with a group of artists and writers while he was at school. It is common for biopics of this nature to be a little “artistic” with the facts and this one is certainly no exception. If the Tolkien estate had in any way endorsed it, then it would have lent credibility to that artistic licence.

This is not the first time that the estate has felt the need to issue such a statement about the author on the release of a film of this nature.

New Poetry Book for Award Winning Writer

Ann Drysdale, the Gwent poet who is a winner of the Dylan Thomas Prize for Poetry in performance, will shortly be releasing her new poetry book. The launch of the book will take place on 30th April in Abergavenny.

The book “Vanitas” is her second with her current publisher, but the seventh collection in total that Drysdale has written. She has won numerous prizes for poetry all over the country. Her previous works include a guidebook, two memoirs, 4 poetry volumes and one other work.

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