Dante Exhibition/Jail Campaign/Kaur’s New Book – Poetry News Roundup January 5th

Today in our poetry news round-up, we look at another Dante exhibition, the campaign to save the jail where Oscar Wilde was held and Rupi Kaur’s new book.

Springfield Art Museum Plans 93rd Year of Exhibitions

The Springfield Art Museum in Massachusetts is preparing for their 93rd year of exhibitions. These are the exhibitions that they are hoping to put on during the 2021 to 2022 season despite the distancing issues that are currently in place as a result of the Covid-19 pandemic.

The exhibitions will take in a range of different fields including statues, paintings, and poetry.

With this year marking a particularly important date in the history of the poet Dante Alighieri, they have an exhibition scheduled from September 2021 to February 2022 titled The Inferno of Dante: Etchings by Michael Mazur. The exhibition will be hosting 41 etchings, the full portfolio, that illustrate The Inferno. The poem was written by Dante during the 14th century and detailed his journey, guided by Virgil – the Roman poet – as they travelled through Hell, then Purgatory and finally Paradise. Each of the etchings will be partnered with a portion of the poem which will be reproduced in Italian with an English translation by Robert Pinsky, the American poet who was the Poet Laureate of the US between 1997 and 2000.

Campaign Continues to Save Jail Where Oscar Wilde Was Held

Three British stage and screen stars have added their names to the campaign that is currently running to save one particular jail where Oscar Wilde, the Irish playwright and poet was held in the late 1800s for “the crime” of being gay.

Natalie Dormer who appears in “Game of Thrones”, Dame Judi Dench and Sir Kenneth Branagh, want the prison in Reading which dates back to 1844 to be turned into a culture centre.

Accused of “gross indecency” Wilde was held in the Reading jail from 1895 to 1897. The prison was closed in 2013 and an attempt to sell it to developers was unsuccessful in November 2020.

The local council have plans to turn the building into an arts venue, it was used in 2016 to host an art exhibit and there have been numerous calls locally for this to become a permanent solution for the building.

“Home Body” By Rupi Kaur Strengthens her Position as a Force to be Reckoned With

With her most recent collection of poetry, the internet sensation has shown that she really is a poet of the modern era.

Kaur is well known as a poet amongst a growing audience of younger people. Whilst she is certainly not a Langston Hughes, an Emily Dickinson or even an Edgar Allan Poe, however, her work is far from frivolous and the significant numbers of sales of her new book certainly prove this.

The book was released in November and has already been translated into 40 languages and has sold over 8 million copies. Some of the poems from the book have even been broadcast in the city of London.

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