The Present Order: Ian Hamilton Finlay
Ian Hamilton Finlay (1925-2006) was an artist, poet, and gardner. His work often emphasized the uses of language, applied through the practices of typography, philosophy, and concrete poetry. Wild Hawthorne Press (his publishing imprint) and Little Sparta (the garden he created with Sue Finlay) are the most well-known of long-term works. His preference for neoclassical themes and references can feel exhilaratingly anachronistic, but his deeply physical sensibilities place the works directly in the temporal world. Finlay found a way to ask the "big questions"—what is nature? what is culture?—and in the asking, needed no answers.
All original writings by Alec Finlay, Anne Moeglin-Delcroix, Michael Charlesworth, Marjorie Perloff, Kenneth Goldsmith, Stephen Scobie. Made in conjunction with the exhibition Ian Hamilton Finlay: A Selection of Printed Works (2010-11) (Marfa Book Co. Gallery, Marfa, TX). Design by Flint Jamison.