art & exhibitions
literature & poetry

National Poetry Library Open Day

Part of Poetry International

Peek into National Poetry Library's collection for specially commissioned live readings and displays in our Open Day.

National Poetry Library Open Day gives you the opportunity to browse the hidden gems from the library’s collection and get yourself up to speed with the latest poetry through its selection of new acquisitions from 2019.

This year’s Open Day focuses on the theme of ‘disruption’, as we celebrate the many ways in which modern and contemporary poetry has been an active field for poets to use their work to challenge the status quo.

At 2pm there will be live performances from poets Olivia Douglass and Hannah Raymond-Cox. The poets will each read new work in response to the themed displays.

Discover the American cult poet DA Levy, whose work deliberately included spelling ‘mistakes’ to increase its potential for multiple meanings.

Explore the Toni Morrison Effect, looking at how the late novelist disrupted the western canon, particularly in poetry, and the works we wouldn't have without her.

View a display of ‘Avant Objects’’ by UK publisher zimZalla, which has also recently published a series of tarot-inspired cards by Sascha Aurora Akhtar and John Arnold called Only Dying Sparkles.

Explore how artists’ books are used as an experimental medium for poets and visual artists as well as discovering the National Poetry Library team’s staff picks, selected from the library’s extensive collections.

Olivia Douglass is a writer and artist from South East London. Her work aims to great an innovative terrain for writing to remould the traditional and colonial images surrounding the Black Queer experience. She recently published her debut collection of poetry titled Slow Tongue, which is an examination of language and the relationship between Black women artists. She is Barbican Young Poets Alumni, and has worked with the Albany Theatre, Earwax Collective, The S+K Project. She is currently working at Hip-Hop Theatre company Boy Blue whilst creating her first stage show, 'Palm As Portal' supported by Talawa Theatre Company.

Hannah Raymond-Cox is a multi-slam winner and a consummate performer up for a laugh. Highlights of her career include the Stanza Slam, National Poetry Slam Championships Finalist for Scotland, and she is one of the Bad Boys of Slam. She's also a noted spoken word theatre maker; her 5 star solo show POLARIS has toured the UK and enjoyed a full Edinburgh Fringe run at the Scottish Poetry Library. Her debut book Amuse Girl was published by Burning Eye Books this year.

Dates & times

19 Oct 2019
    • Sat 19 October 2019
      • 12:00 pm


Royal Festival Hall
The Clore Ballroom, Level 2