Weidenfeld & Nicolson has secured two titles exploring poet William Blake’s psyche and his lasting effect on popular culture, ahead of the Tate Britain’s exhibition next month.
Publisher Jenny Lord acquired UK and Commonwealth rights to William Blake Now: Why He Matters More Than Ever and William Blake vs the World by John Higgs from United Agents’ Sarah Ballard.
Essay William Blake Now will explore the poet and artist’s influence on contemporary culture including sports, video games and fashion and will be published on 5th September 2019, ahead of the Tate Britain exhibition on 11th September 2019.
According to the synopsis, William Blake vs the World will look into science, culture, philosophy and religion to understand the “bewildering eccentricities” of the artist. Publication is scheduled for May 2021.
Lord said: “John is one of the most erudite, imaginative and mischievous writers of his generation and it is hard to imagine a more perfect match of author and subject. William Blake Now is an exquisite little essay that packs an enlightening punch, and with William Blake vs the World I have no doubt that John will deliver an important, fascinating and singular work on one of our most beloved artists and poet.”
Higgs added: “There is nothing as rich, empowering and illuminating as William Blake's mental landscape, but it can appear bewildering and incomprehensible at first glance. It is a real honour to write a popular guide to that world, to bring Blake's personal mythology into the present day and to show that a glimpse of Eternity is just what we need right now.”