Recessional - or, The Time of the Hammer

Tom McCarthy
Katrina Plamer: The Necropolitan Line talks series
20th January 2016
Henry Moore Institute Seminar Room, 6pm

Katrina Palmer
'Did Anyone Read the Book' (detail)
Mixed media installation with audio recording

Photo: Bernard G Mills

From Sophocles' Antigone to William Faulkner's Addie Bundren, Western literature has frequently concerned itself with funerary rites which are at once elaborate, fraught and endlessly protracted. Speaking to, if not directly about, Katrina Palmer's sculptural work from a practice or place of fiction, Tom McCarthy asks why the Necropolitan Line is so inherently subject to delays.

Tom McCarthy is a writer and artist whose work has been translated into more than twenty languages. His first novel, Remainder, which deals with questions of trauma and repetition, won the 2008 Believer Book Award and was recently adapted for the cinema. His third, C, which explores the relationship between melancholia and technological media, was shortlisted for the 2010 Booker Prize, as was his fourth, Satin Island, in 2015.

McCarthy is also author of the 2006 non-fiction book Tintin and the Secret of Literature, an exploration of the themes and patterns of Hergé's comic books; of the novel Men in Space, set in a Central Europe rapidly disintegrating after the collapse of communism; and of numerous essays that have appeared in publications such as The New York Times, The London Review of Books, Harper's and Artforum. In addition, he is founder and General Secretary of the International Necronautical Society (INS), a semi-fictitious avant-garde network of writers, philosophers and artists whose work has been exhibited internationally at venues including the Palais de Tokyo, Paris, Tate Britain and Moderna Museet, Stockholm. In 2013 he was awarded the inaugural Windham Campbell Prize for Fiction by Yale University.

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