Faces of Conflict exhibition opening: Royal Albert Memorial Museum & Art Gallery, with Michael Longley

Faces of Conflict, the major UK exhibition arising from 1914FACES2014, opened at the RAMM on 17th January 2015. The private view was accompanied by a uniquely moving and powerful reading by Michael Longley, CBE. Michael read from his recent collection The Stairwell (2014) and spoke about the key role played by the First World War in his poetic creation.


Michael Longley (Photo: SMSteele)

Michael’s father served as the teenage commander of ‘Longley’s Babies’, one of the London-Scottish regiment’s infantry companies. Michael’s father’s experience marks Michael’s own reflections on a variety of conflicts from different historical periods, and The Stairwell sees remarkable juxtapositions of scenes from the Trojan wars and the First World War. In particular, Michael’s poem ‘The Tin Noses Shop’ offers a glimpse of the gueules cassées and of Anna Coleman Ladd’s work to create portrait masks in the war years. We were honoured to be able to include this work and Michael’s equally striking work ‘Face’ in the exhibition.

Faces of Conflict explores the long-lasting influence upon artists and surgeons of the facial injuries suffered during the First World War, and includes contemporary work by Paddy Hartley, Eleanor Crook, Rene Apallec in dialogue with a range of historical artefacts.

1914FACES2014 exhibition team

1914FACES2014 exhibition team (Photo: Will Dyer)

The exhibition is at the RAMM until 5th April 2015.


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