Heart Shape Pornography

Heart Shape Pornography is a series of poems handwritten on apples, initially commissioned by the Liverpool Biennial in 2004 and placed around the Walker Art Gallery. The apples have since featured in many exhibitions, notably at the Henry Moore Institute and the Text Festivals in Bury Art Museum, UK.

The poems were created by cutting the shape of a heart out of a book of pornography and then using the words in the hearts to make poems. The results blur genders and power relationships, melt the distinctions between bodies. They have a haiku-like brevity and also share with haiku the sense of an eternal moment. Given their source, the pieces are surprisingly gentle.



Apples are symbols of desire and of corruption that appear throughout the artworks in Walker Art Gallery, a very appropriate 'page' for these poems. Poems were situated in a large circle in the upstairs foyer and in bowls and singly in the High Victorian room and were thrown downstairs en masse as a performance piece.



The poems allude to the act of looking, raising questions about the gaze and what this encompasses. They signpost the extraordinary, yet half-acknowledged, boundaries between public and private, male and female, erotic and obscene.