SEARCH THE ENTIRE CATALOGUE BY ARTIST NAME, TITLE, GENRE & KEYWORD

IAN HAMILTON FINLAY

MISCELLANY

THE UGLY BIRDS WITHOUT WINGS. 1962. ONE OF 50 SIGNED & NUMBERED “SPECIAL EDITION” COPIES.

Edinburgh: Allan Donaldson, 1962
21 x 14cm, 16pp plus card covers. This was Hugh MacDiarmid's "reply to charges made by Ian Hamilton Finlay and others".
A public dispute had taken place after MacDiarmid said that some poets were not worthy to be included in an anthology of new poems dedicated to Burns - this must have stung Finlay and his circle and a war of words took place following a personal meeting with Jessie McGuffie who MacDiarmid claims told him his work was boring and out of touch with contemporary life.
Because Jessie McGuffie was involved centrally with the Wild Flounder Press (the forerunner in name to the Wild Hawthorn Press) and Poor, Old, Tired Horse (sic) the dispute widened to include Finlay. MacDiarmid claims they accused him of failing to help younger Scottish writers and using his prominence in the field of Scottish letters to exclude others.
The book makes MacDiarmid's case against this (as one might expect) and then attacks Finlay directly - given MacDiarmid was Finlay's best man at his wedding then this is somewhat remarkable. MacDiarmid says that Finlay's published works (at this point mostly Glasgow Beasts a more traditional form of poetry) is 'all "old hat"'. The two poets have by now clearly fallen out badly.
This is one of 50 signed and numbered copies denoted as a "special edition". In a text at the front of the book inside the covers is found:
"HUGH MACDIARMID is undoubtedly great. And alike all great men before him, he has had the unpleasant experience of meeting the unreasonable and artless criticisms of the nonentities who surround art."
JOINT WITH
A letter dated 31 - 7 - 62 from a rare bookseller to one of his clients enclosing the book and inviting his client to a party for the publication of MacDiarmid's A Festschrift.
Both are VG+ and this is a major rarity with insight into the reaction of a literary bun-fight between poets.

SEMI-IDIOTIC POEM. C. 1962. UNUSED PROOF PRINT.

N.p. (Gloucester?): n.p., n.d. (c. 1962)
33 x 20cm, b/w offset lithograph. A single sheet with Finlay's ‘Semi-idiotic poem’' printed near the bottom Such "coded" works were invented by Décio Pignatari and Luiz Pinto and categorised as being part of a semiotic or code-poem genre. This poem was printed in Poor. Old. Tired. Horse. Nr 13 but also as part of a John Furnival published portfolio of Finlay's works. This appears to be an early and unused proof copy of the work and any further background is not clear. This example has a significant paper lack bottom right only just missing the image. Any information on this image would be welcome.

WILD HAWTHORN PRESS PRICE LIST. 1963.

Dunsyre: Wild Hawthorn Press, n.d. (1963)
29.4 x 20.4cm, 1pp offset lithographic price list for the Press. Mentions the early publications from the Press and some such as Jonathan William's Lullabies Twisters Gibbers Drags which the Press was the distributor for in the UK. Former fold else VG+.

WILD HAWTHORN PRESS PRICE LIST. FEBRUARY 1965.

Edinburgh: Wild Hawthorn Press, 1965
Two 25 x 20.1cm, 1pp sheets stapled top left) offset lithographic price list for the Press. Mentions the various book and nrs of POTH plus prints including Pierre Albert-Birot. Franz Mon, Ferdinand Kriwet and John Furnival as well as Finlay. Each is 5/-. Former fold else and some red ink period notes on the first page else VG+.

WILD HAWTHORN PRESS PRICE LIST. SPRING 1965.

Ardgay: Wild Hawthorn Press, 1965
33 x 20.3cm, 1pp offset lithographic price list for the Press. Mentions books by Augusto de Campos, Turnbuil, Jonathan Williams, Edwin Morgan and others as well as POTHs and Finlay. Also notes the move from 24 Fettes Row, Edinburgh to Gledfield Farmhouse, Ardgay, Ross-shire. Former folds, some edge wear and a couple of small tears and some vintage ink annotations to the text else VG+.

WILD HAWTHORN PRESS PRICE LIST. AUTUMN 1965.

Ardgay: Wild Hawthorn Press, 1965
24.3 x 16.3cm, 1pp offset lithographic price list for the Press. Mentions books and poster prints and broadsides. Formerly folded else VG+.

POETRY 66. 1966. A FAKE POEM BY FINLAY.

Nottingham: Trent Book Shop, 1966
25.4 x 10cm, 6pp. Announcement and brochure for this small show of concrete poetry which showed works by dsh, Gael Turnbull, Jeff Nuttall, Hugh MacDiamidf, Bob Sobbing, Edwin Morgan, Jonathan Williams, John Furnival, Tom Clark, and others but NOT FInlay. There is a short poem reproduced which is ascribed to Finlay called “No Thank You, I Can’t Come” but was written by Simon Cutts which is a parody of the format of "Dancers inherit the party" and is a sly and funny dig at Finlay for not participating. VG although a former soft crease top left on the card. Very scarce.

WILD HAWTHORN PRESS PRICE LIST. WINTER ’66/ ’67.

Dunsyre: Wild Hawthorn Press, 1967 21 x 15cm, 4pp offset lithographic price list for the Press. This is the first mention of the change of address as Finlays had just moved to Dunsyre and the Stoneypath Farm. Additional is a long list of new publications as the Press became more prolific. Sea Poem by Robert Lax, Vasarely's early print and other early books and standing cards such as 4 Sails are mentioned as well as POTHs. VG+.

ORDER FORM FOR VARIOUS PUBLICATIONS FROM TARASQUE PRESS. 1967.

21 x 15cm, 4pp. A publicity leaflet and order form for various publications which includes Finlay's Ocean Stripe Series 5. VG.

SUSSEX OUTLOOK. BRIGHTON FESTIVAL SPECIAL ISSUE. 1967.

Brighton: Sussex Outlook, 1967
44 x 32cm, 12pp(self cover) - a tabloid newspaper published by students at the University of Sussex, which was a special issue considering the events at the Brighton festival including the double page feature on the concrete poetry exhibition that Finlay figured so prominently in. Two works are repriuced black on white (Cythera and roSY fAr blacK and a lengthy and informed text by Nigel Maslin who quotes Finlay and Bann amongst others. Rare. VG+ although browned a bit over fifty years.

WILD HAWTHORN PRESS PRICE LIST. SUMMER 1967.

Dunsyre: Wild Hawthorn Press, 1967
34.5 x 17.4cm, 1pp offset lithographic price list for the Press. Mentions a long list of new publications as the Press became more prolific. By now the Press (and the Finlays had moved again and now to Dunsyre and Stoneypath Farm). Formerly folded twice else VG+.

STUDENT. APRIL 24 1969.

Edinburgh: Student, 1969
42 x 31cm, 8pp (self cover) - a tabloid newspaper published by students at the University of Edinburgh for students, which has a reasonably long double page article on Finlay and own work - "By persevering I have managed to get some things done". Two sculptural works and a print are reproduced in b/w. Manages to misspell Paolozzi (oh student journalists) but it's a reasonable article that recognises the artist and pet for what he is. VG although heavily browned and some minor rippling on the edges.

  • 1
  • 2
  • 3
  • 4
  • 5
  • 6
  • 7
  • 8