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Inventory of a Life Mislaid: an Evening with Marina Warner

Venue: Birkbeck 43 Gordon Square

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Marina Warner explores the complexities of writing Inventory of a Life Mislaid: An Unreliable Memoir (2021) after her parents’ death in conversation with artist Fay Ballard. In person.

Marina Warner discusses her recent work Inventory of a Life Mislaid: An Unreliable Memoir (2021) with artist Fay Ballard and explores the complexities of writing a memoir after her parents’ death. The evening will investigate themes such as: the self in relation to family, childhood, memory, loss, remembrance, home and spirit of place; the world of the personal in the public domain including the ‘confessional’; memory construction; the responsibility of ‘bearing witness’ to past events in story-telling and image making; legacy; research and practice as means of enquiry, and the role and use of family archives.  

Marina Warner is a writer of fiction, criticism and history; her works include novels and short stories as well as studies of art, myth, symbols and fairy tales. She was educated in convent schools in Cairo, Brussels and Ascot, and read Modern Languages at Lady Margaret Hall, Oxford. She is Professor of English and Creative Writing at Birkbeck College, London, a Distinguished Fellow of All Souls College, Oxford, a Fellow of the British Academy, President of the Royal Society of Literature and was made DBE in 2015 for services to higher education and literature. Inventory of a Life Mislaid: An Unreliable Memoir was published in 2021 by William Collins London. 

Fay Ballard is a contemporary artist whose studio practice is centred on drawing, underpinned by an interest in psychoanalysis. Her recent work was exhibited in London and Leeds in solo shows, and recently in two collaborative exhibitions with Judy Goldhill: ‘Breathe’ at the Freud Museum (2018) and ‘Travelling Companions’ at the University of Cambridge (2020-1). Fay was a visiting artist at Hammersmith Hospital (2017-18) and sits on the Imperial Health Arts committee delivering arts programmes to patients across five London hospitals. Fay speaks regularly at London art schools. Her work is held by HM The Queen, HRH The Prince of Wales, The Prince’s Foundation, Imperial Health, Royal College of Physicians, Winsor & Newton and Murray Edwards College Cambridge.

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