The poetry of Margaret Atwood meets the paintbrush of Michaela Yearwood-Dan in a stunning visual masterpiece created for Bazaar Art’s limited-edition cover.
It’s not widely known that the critically acclaimed novelist Atwood was initially a poet. Combining aspects of the temporal and spiritual world, Dearly – Atwood’s first poetry collection in over a decade – features subjects as diverse as aliens and sirens to werewolves and dreams. In Atwood’s classic style, she skilfully marries the banal and witty to the powerful and poignant in a playful wink at the vicissitudes of life: absences and endings; ageing and retrospection; gifts and renewals.
Michaela Yearwood-Dan is a contemporary British fine artist based in London. Her works draw on observations of society and self to explore themes of class, culture/race, gender and nature as well as love, loss and reflection. Paint and collage are Yearwood-Dan’s favoured mediums, where she blends painting and craft techniques borrowed from western and east Asian historical influences. Throughout, her habitually thick and sumptuous style is underpinned by an expansive repertory of cultural signifiers evoking millennials, Blackness and feminism. Botanical influences swirl alongside images of late-night food spots and acrylic nails, texting and carnival culture, whereby an omnipresent flora alludes to the infinite possibilities of a diaspora in flux.
We asked Michaela to respond to Atwood’s poem Feather – and the result ‘Feather (A Salute to you Mr Magpie)’ is a joy to behold: a dazzling dialogue of light within darkness, colour and depth. Atwood agrees: "I am so happy with Michaela Yearwood-Dan’s interpretation of my poem," she says. "She has captured the dynamic movement of the falling feathers, as well as the dark-side-of-the-moon tone and the sense that the death of one entity can give rise to a new kind of life."
The full story behind the exclusive collaboration can be read now in our 2020 Bazaar Art supplement - free with the November issue. To purchase this cover, click here and choose ‘Michaela Yearwood-Dan – ‘Feather’.
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