Join Poet in the City and Poets in Vogue curators at exquisite private members’ club The House of St Barnabas for an evening that reflects on the rich dynamics between poetry and fashion.

Hear newly commissioned poetry by Dzifa BensonMona ArshiRemi GravesFiona Curran and Jasmine Cooray, performed in the beautiful chapel space. We're also delighted to be joined by the winners of the Poets in Vogue challenge, run on The Poetry Society's Young Poets Network. We'll hear readings from Thomas Oh, Imogen Wade and Yasmin Inkersole, and commended poets Jessica Jamie, Lottie McCrindell, Joanna Liu, and Sophia Truong. The evening will also feature captivating discussions led by Claire Wilcox (Professor in Fashion Curation at the London College of Fashion) on the relationship between language and dress, unveiling the importance of clothes, to the art of poetry.

And why not arrive early to make your own poetry/fashion piece with craft collective Decorating Dissidence, including Stevie Smith-inspired collars and poetry rosettes? The group - which brings together art practitioners, makers, curators, activists and academics to critically engage with feminist art history - will be crafting throughout the night.

You can then slip on your fabulous couture creations and join us to dance the night away with DJ Harietta, as we enjoy poetry à la mode.

6 - 7pm/8.30-9.30pm - Drop-in workshop with Decorating Dissidence
7 - 8.30pm - Main event in the chapel
8.30 - 10pm - DJ

Book tickets here

About the Artists

Mona Arshi’s debut collection Small Hands won the Forward Prize for best first collection in 2015. Her second collection Dear Big Gods was published in 2019 (both books published by Liverpool University Press’s Pavilion Poetry list). Her writing has been published in The Times, The Guardian, Granta, The Yale Review and The Times of India as well as on the London Underground. She was writer in Residence at Cley Marshes in Norfolk and during lockdown she spent time in the area working on poems that were
transformed into digital assets and embedded in the landscape. In 2020 she was appointed Honorary Professor at the University of Liverpool and she is currently a fellow in creative writing at Trinity College , Cambridge a position she will hold until September 2024. Her novel has appeared on the Jhalak, Desmond Elliot and Republic of Consciousness prize lists and most recently was shortlisted for the Goldsmith prize.She is a fellow of the Royal Society of Literature and an Ambassador to PEN.

Jasmine Cooray is a poet, psychotherapist and arts facilitator. She has been a Women of the World Festival speaker, BBC Performing Arts Fellow and Writer-in- Residence at the National University of Singapore, and has delivered creative writing projects for The Barbican, the Southbank Centre, First Story, The Arvon Foundation and the National Literacy Trust. Her pamphlet Everything We Don’t Say was published by Tall Lighthouse in 2009. Inheritance, her first full collection of poetry, is published with Bad Betty Press in November 2023.

Fiona Curran is a poet, filmmaker, and sonic artist. She holds an M.A. in Creative Writing from the University of East Anglia. As a poet she has been published widely in the UK & Ireland. Her collections, The Hail Mary Pass, and Never Try to Outswim a Bear, were published by Wreckingball Press. She is currently working on a third collection Clothes Horse, which is a meditation on the intersection of fashion, disguise, and clothing, as illusion. Her film work explores poetic portraiture and emotional essence. Her films have been show nationally and internationally, most recently at the UK exhibition With What We Have Left. As a sonic artist, she has presented works at the RedSonic Festival, Car Boot Art Fair, Literary Kitchen, and Every day is Spacial.

A former Barbican Young Poet, Remi Graves’ work has been featured on BBC Radio 4, at St Paul’s Cathedral and elsewhere. Recent commissions include ‘don’t text me, i’m dreaming’ for Apples and Snakes and ‘On Breathing’ for Barbican Centre. Remi has taught courses at The Poetry School and delivers workshops in schools and libraries across London and UK. Remi was a 2017 National Poetry Day Ambassador and has performed at Cheltenham Literature Festival, Tate Modern and more.

Dzifa Benson is a multi-disciplinary artist whose work intersects science, art, the body and ritual which she explores through poetry, theatre-making, performance, essays, and criticism. She has performed her work nationally and internationally in many contexts such as: artist in residence at the Courtauld Institute of Art; producer of a poetry in performance event responding to David Hockney’s work in Tate Britain and core artist in BBC Africa Beyond’s cross-arts project, Translations. Her work has been published and presented in Poetry Review, the Guardian, the Financial Times, the Telegraph, Royal Opera House, the Bush Theatre and the House of Commons. Dzifa has abridged the National Youth Theatre’s 2021 production of Othello in collaboration with Olivier award-winning director Miranda Cromwell and is working on a commissioned play, Black Mozart/White Chevalier.

Claire Wilcox is a curator and writer. She is Professor in Fashion Curation at the London College of Fashion, University of the Arts London and Visiting Scholar, Oxford Centre for Life-Writing. She was Senior Curator of Fashion at the Victoria and Albert Museum until 2022 where she curated many exhibitions, including Alexander McQueen: Savage Beauty (2015), Frida Kahlo: Making Her Self Up (2018) and Fashioning Masculinities: the Art of Menswear (2022). She has a life-long interest in biography, and in particular memory work as actuated by clothing. Her first book Patch Work: A Life Amongst Clothes (Bloomsbury) won the 2021 PEN Ackerley Prize for memoir and autobiography.

Harietta is a DJ based in East London. Her unique blend of pop and queer dance music creates a gorgeous chaos on the dancefloor, creating a space that's in communion with queer scenes across the past, present & future. A Dalston Superstar and Gal Pal, whose sets for Keep Hush and Foundation FM can be listened back to ahead of her set.

Decorating Dissidence is an interdisciplinary project exploring the radical, aesthetic and conceptual qualities of craft and making from modernism to the contemporary. Run by Jade French, Lottie Whalen and Suzanna Petot, the project brings together art practitioners, makers, curators, activists and academics to break down disciplinary boundaries and find new ways to critically engage with feminist art history. It opens up a space for intergenerational dialogue between contemporary and modernist makers, in order to reveal the lasting legacies of marginalised women artists who worked at the dissident intersections between established mediums and modes of modern art.

Booking for this event has now closed.