SOAS University of London

Artist’s illustrations highlight SOAS World Languages Institute’s work on Southbank’s Endangered Poetry Project

13 August 2018

A series of illustrations have been produced by the artist Mary Kuper to highlight endangered languages, as part of the Southbank’s Endangered Poetry Project – in which the SOAS World Languages Institute is taking part.

The Project has been led by Southbank Centre’s National Poetry Library who have worked closely with Dr Mandana Seyfeddinipur, Director of the Institute, to preserve poems in both their original language and in English.

As languages die out at the rate of one every two weeks, the National Poetry Library launched this project with the aim of collecting poems in as many of these languages as possible.

Endangered Poetry Project pic

As one of the outputs of this project, Mary Kuper has created visual works which are displayed in the Language Shift exhibition. Her illustrations highlight languages that feature on UNESCO's world map of endangered languages including Breton, Alsatian, Sardinian and Shetlandic.

Mary Kuper also previously worked with SOAS at the SOAS World Languages Institute Language Festival where she created a series of paintings inspired by metaphors of the body drawn from languages of the world.

The Language Shift exhibition runs until 23 September. Dr Seyfeddinipur will also be speaking at the Southbank on 12 August on Language shift and its unintended consequences