Red Curls

About the Book

In a series of poems that move between narrative and lyric, the personas of Austrian artist Egon Schiele and his mistress/model Valerie “Wally” Neuzil are revealed in exquisite detail. Dividing the work into three sections, equal energy is given to the artist, his model, and the alluring energy of Viennese eroticism. Throughout, three voices appear as dramatic monologues that allow Schiele, Neuzil, and a voice from the present to speak. Central to the voices is the emotion of desire and how this desire to paint, love, or write inspires us to greatness. Creating intimacy through the use of first person and exposing drama through the use of the third, Hamon’s poems resonate with Egon’s and Valerie’s story: how they met, their intense desires, and the union and bond that would keep them together for years. Red Curls chronicles life, and in doing so captures the enterprise and intensity of Schiele as he pushed the culture of desire to new heights. With meticulous care, Hamon explores the truth of her subjects as presented in Schiele’s portraits. The paintings themselves became the revolutionary and liberating edge of a generation of artists.

About the Author

Tracy Hamon was born in Regina, Saskatchewan. She holds a Master of Arts in English from the University of Regina. Her first book of poetry, This Is Not Eden (Thistledown Press, 2005) was a finalist for two Saskatchewan Book Awards. Portions of her collection Interruptions in Glass won the 2005 City of Regina Writing Award and were also shortlisted for two Saskatchewan Book Awards in 2010. Most recently she was long-listed for the 2012 CBC Poetry Award.

2015 Book Awards

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