Spike Island

Extra CurricularArt and culture reading group


Thursday 18 July 2013, 6pm


Free for Spike Associates
Booking essential

Please contact us for a copy of the reading.

Event type

Extra Curricular

Discover new inspirations and critical perspectives with our regular art and culture reading group. Casual and open to all, these sessions are led by a guest whose nominated text reflects concerns in our current exhibitions or their own research. Copies of the readings are available on booking.

Spike Island's curator Marie-Anne McQuay has chosen American poet and writer Maggie Nelson’s fragmented lyrical essay ‘Bluets’ (2009) as a companion read to Melissa Gordon’s exhibition, Material Evidence.

The book starts with the line “Suppose I were to begin by saying that I had fallen in love with a color. Suppose I were to speak this as though it were a confession”. Blue is Nelson’s own particular and peculiar obsession; for her it is the colour of sex, loss, obsession and life itself. Different kinds of blue are noted and their merits considered, as is the failure of other colours to compare. She interweaves her own associations and observations with writings by artists and philosophers, including Goethe’s Theory of Colours, Derek Jarman’s Chroma and Wittgenstein’s Remarks on Colour.

Raw with emotion yet exquisitely crafted, ‘Bluets’ provides the starting point for discussions on experimental non-fiction, feminism and erotic writing, and the symbolic and abstract potential of colour. 

Please note: Extra Curricular is taking a summer break in August and will return in September.