five sheets at Five Years presents the latest section from Poetry of Unknown Words, our feminising response to Iliazd’s Poésie de mots inconnus, 1949. This is a series of transcriptions using an expanded sense of authorship and relationships with others through time.


five sheets at Five Years: Susan Johanknecht and Katharine Meynell
Winter 2012 we walk to Dulwich Park, site of the stolen Barbara Hepworth Two Forms (Divided Circle). Take note of its absence. Print image of recently missing sculpture covered in bright blue plastic sheeting and cordoned off with orange netting. Verso, delicate paper collaged texts (Bernard MT Condensed type) describe vandalisms of BH work dating from the 1960’s.

Internet trawl for architects throws up Ethel Mary Charles 1871–1962 first woman member of RIBA. Never heard of her. Go to library. Intrigued by her radical text A Plea for Women Practicing Architecture presented to the fortnightly meeting of the Architectural Association 1902. Reproduce and fold down big and bulky. Verso, shit-brown pochoir of earth closet from EMC drawings for labourers’ cottages 'Wykehamica' 1895.

Lucie Rie, transcription from pot to page. Hand burnish a log off the wood-pile, shape of cross-section suggests a vessel. Wood-ring markings resemble pottery sgrafitto. Print airmail in the garden. Verso rubbings with silver, bronze and graphite of buttons (ref. LR button moulds circa 1941–1947) use our button collection (again).

ZENOBIA IN CHAINS, Harriet Hosmer sculpture ‘missing’ (rediscovered 2008 in a garden, sold at Sothebys to Huntington Library). Reflects a political zeitgeist - the abolition of slavery and the emancipation of women. “a conventional treatment of drapery in a tasteless modern Italian style, a low kind of thing…”. Verso, H.H. had close relationship with Elizabeth Barrett Browning in Rome, ‘Aurora Leigh’ (1856) informed by this friendship.

Examine Eileen Gray stencils and process notebooks at Blythe House, recipes for lacquers etc. Stenciled wall texts from her neglected E1027 (1929) letter-pressed with polymer plates. Sheets hinged with Chiyogami gold patterned paper reference EG screen in the V&A collection. Wrapper, black glassine with EG’s handwriting.