One for the Christmas list. Concrete Poetry: Post-War Modernist Public Art by Simon Phipps lands in November.
You probably know Simon Phipps from his New Brutalism Instagram account, or perhaps his past publications, Brutal London and Finding Brutalism. Possibly even the Brutalist London map he did for Blue Crow Media. Whatever you know him for, you know he’s an expert in this particular field.
Saying that, Concrete Poetry is a slight diversion and an interesting one, pitched as ‘a visual journey through the public sculpture, art and architecture of Modernist Britain’.
A 192-page book from September Publishing, this is all about the public art that sprung up after the Second World War as part of the new public spaces in our rebuilt cities.
According to the publisher…
This era of post-war progressive civic architecture and art gave rise to some of the UK’s most important pieces of public art. From Richard Serra’s Fulcrum in London’s Broadgate to Barbara Hepworth’s works across the country, to the less well-known Cumisky mural in Skelmersdale and the vivid Schottlander shapes in Warwick, these works of art have become familiar companions; backdrops to British lives.
They were once commonplace, recognised symbols of a particular area. But these pieces of art are becoming harder to find. Many have been removed, others left to crumble or have become the targets of vandals. Which is why this book is so significant.
In Concrete Poetry, Simon Phipps ‘photographs, explores and celebrates’ Britain’s post-war public art, placing it in context and considering its future.
The photography and of course, the art itself, are the likely stars of the show. But the context and background are important too, provided by an introduction by Phipps, an essay by Darren Umney and detailed captions relating to each example. A celebration of the subject matter and the era that gave rise to them.
The hardback book is available to pre-order now ahead of the 6th November release date. It is priced at £20.