Finger of a Frenchman
"Finger of a Frenchman" explores looking, and writing about looking: looking at surfaces and beyond them, at what is depicted and what is hidden in shadow, at how a transient chemistry of light may be fixed in colour and words. Kinloch's poems are portraits of artists and reflections on art through five centuries of the artistic bond between Scotland and France. John Acheson, Master of the Scottish Mint, takes Mary, Queen of Scots' portrait for the Scottish coinage, Esther Inglis paints the first self-portrait by a Scottish artist; Jean-Jacques Rousseau ticks off his portrait painter, Allan Ramsay, and Eugene Delacroix offers David Wilkie a brace of partridge for tea in Kensington. The Glasgow Boys, the Scottish Colourists and Charles Rennie Mackintosh bring the gallery into the twentieth century, where Kinloch considers the hybrid art of figures such as Ian Hamilton Finlay, Alison Watt and Douglas Gordon in analytical prose-poems. In the book's second part, a mini-epic of a seventeenth-century priest's Grand Tour offers a reflection on the nature of Collection itself, whether of paintings or poems, the composing of fragments into a whole.
- Electronic book text | 98 pages
- 01 Aug 2011
- Carcanet Press Ltd
- Manchester, United Kingdom
About David Kinloch
David Kinloch was born, raised and educated in Glasgow. He is a graduate of the universities of Glasgow and Oxford and was for many years a teacher of French studies. He currently teaches creative writing and Scottish literature at the University of Strathclyde, Glasgow. His first collection of poems, entitled Paris-Forfar, was praised by Edwin Morgan in the Scotsman: 'The book is notable for three things: successes in the impossible genre of the prose-poem, ... a trio of lively flytings... and a series of moving elegies for a gay lover dead from AIDS.' Kinloch is the author of four previous collections including Un Tour d'Ecosse (2001) and In My Father's House (2005), both published by Carcanet, and of many critical works in the fields of French, Translation and Scottish studies. In 2004 he was a winner of the Robert Louis Stevenson Memorial Award and in 2006 held a Scottish Writers' Bursary from the Scottish Arts Council. He was a founder editor of the poetry magazine Verse and has been instrumental in setting up the first Scottish Writers' Centre.