Cities, Edge Hill Prize 2009: Commission from a North
The Edge Hill Prize is a prestigious literary award, bestowed annually
on the author of
a published short story collection from the UK or Ireland. In addition
to the £5000 first prize,
the winning author receives a specially
commissioned artwork, sponsored by
Blackwell bookshops. Pete Clarke was selected from proposals from
North West artists for
this year’s prize, which will be awarded at The Bluecoat,
Liverpool on July 4th 2009.
• Please consult our website www.edgehill.ac.uk/shortstory
for more on the Edge Hill Prize,
the short story and prize-winning authors.
Invisible Cities: Commissioned Painting by Pete Clarke.
Clarke’s work explores visual narratives influenced as much
by contemporary literature as by contemporary art which makes this
an appropriate artist for the commissioned prize for a short story
writer. He has selected composite images of an imagined city, a
building that represents metaphorically the idea of a shell, an
empty container of possible associations.
The constructed framed painting juxtaposes images and related poetic
text from ‘Invisible Cities’ by Italio Calvino.
narrative explores imagination and the imaginable through the descriptions
of cities by the explorer Marco Polo in a conversation with the
aging emperor Kublai Khan.
The majority of the book consists of brief prose poems describing
cities and short dialogues between the two characters to discuss
various ideas presented by the cities on a wide range of topics
including linguistics and human nature.