'Lost for Words' paintings by Siobhan Purdy with poems by Rene Crouch and Alison Tangye

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Lost for Words is a collaboration between Cornish artist Siobhan Purdy and poets Rene Crouch and Alison Tangye. 

Purdy’s enigmatic autobiographical paintings are rich in texture, imagery and narrative. Her work emerges from a distillation of memories, experiences and family history revealing an enticing and sometimes unsettling world that the viewer is invited to explore more deeply. Working in oils, Purdy creates a sense of vulnerability on the surface with a feeling of strength underneath, tantalisingly revealing the history of the earlier layers. Lost for Words explores the recurring themes that predominate much of Purdy’s work: vulnerability, isolation and a childhood spent retreating into secret worlds of nature and imagination.  

The challenge for Crouch and Tangye was to respond to the imagery evoked in Purdy’s paintings; to allow the work to tell its stories and reveal themselves in words.  A narrative thread running through the collection of poems evolved: words and themes suggesting themselves and, like the animals and children of the paintings, reappearing in both familiar settings and altered disguises.  The poems beautifully extend the imagery of the paintings as they reveal a secret language that weaves through the verses and binds together a narrative to tell Purdy’s story.

22 pages, soft cover

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