Frogmore’s sad farewell to Viva Lewes magazine

This lovely set of photos was taken just pre-lockdown by local photographer and student Ruby Craig, who’d come into the Viva office on a work placement. She was fabulous, and photographed a number of features for the April issue of the long-running local listings and features magazine – an issue which, sadly, was never to see the light of day. History, and Covid, took over – and now Viva Lewes and Viva Brighton have both, permanently, had to close their doors. 

So Frogmore has kindly offered to host these photos. The subject is Needlewriters poets (though this is not the whole collective) and we four are all also Frogmore poets and  reviewers. (I – Charlotte Gann – also happened to be the outgoing editor of Viva Lewes!). Needlewriters – a cooperative of local writers – continues to host quarterly reading events in Lewes, or at least we hope to again, from January 2021.

For the planned feature we also asked each poet: ‘What is a word you love, and why?’ Here were their – our – responses.

Robin Houghton: “Box’: short, punchy, practical and a bit funny.’

Robin Houghton, photographed by Ruby Craig, 2020

Janet Sutherland: ‘My word is ‘penultimate’, because there’s something magical in being able to pin down the last-but-one.’

Janet Sutherland, photographed by Ruby Craig, 2020

Jeremy Page: “Crepuscular’, because it so perfectly evokes my favourite times of day.’

Jeremy Page, photographed by Ruby Craig, 2020

Charlotte Gann: “Elbow’. It looks great (in many typefaces), sounds good – and combines five of my favourite letters.’

Charlotte Gann, photographed by Ruby Craig, 2020

Ruby Craig can be found on Instagram @rubystyling

CG

 

Desolate Beauty by L.E. Usher

Frogmore has published an outstanding experimental pamphlet of poetry by novelist Lindy Usher. It was produced by New Art Projects, London, in association with us and Art First Gallery,  designed by Christian Kusters at CHK Design, and features specially commissioned art work by John Lee Bird

The book deals with the devastating effects of loss of speech through stroke. Usher suffered a series of strokes at a relatively young age and has here created a sequence of poems about Caspar David Friedrich, Hans von Bülow, Lovis Corinth, Kurt Schwitters and Otto Dix, all of whom suffered strokes. Sue Hubbard notes that Usher ‘takes the fractured shards of language and rebuilds them bit by painful bit to create something that both reflects, yet reaches beyond, this life-changing experience’.

The pamphlet was launched on 26 January 2019 at New Art Projects in London. Here are some pictures of the happy occasion, which showed the complete set of John Lee Bird’s artwork and also reunited almost the complete fleet of staff of Shipley Art Booksellers (70, Charing Cross Road, London) from c.1998, 20 years later.

 

Desolate Beauty has been reviewed by Peter Stewart in the latest issue of The Frogmore Papers (no.93).

Copies of Desolate Beauty can be ordered from New Art Projects at £10.00 plus postage. Postage to the UK is £2.00, postage to the USA/Canada is £5.

Payment can be made by Bank Transfer or by Paypal to Fred@newartprojects.com