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The Anatomical Venus


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About the Author

Helen Ivory is a poet and visual artist. She edits the webzine Ink Sweat and Tears, and is a lecturer for the UEA/National Centre for Writing online creative writing programme. She has published five collections with Bloodaxe Books: The Double Life of Clocks (2002), The Dog in the Sky (2006), The Breakfast Machine (2010), Waiting for Bluebeard (2013) and The Anatomical Venus (2019). Fool's World, a collaborative Tarot with artist Tom de Freston (Gatehouse Press), won the 2016 Saboteur Best Collaborative Work award. A book of collage/ mixed media poems, Hear What the Moon Told Me, was published KFS in 2017, and a chapbook, Maps of the Abandoned City, by SurVision in 2019. She has received an Eric Gregory Award from the Society of Authors, and was awarded Arts Council funding and an Author's Award from the Society of Authors to work on The Anatomical Venus. She lives in Norwich.


Helen Ivory creates a troubled yet beguiling world rich in irony and disquiet. She possesses a strongly-grounded narrative voice which, combined with her dextrous transformative takes both on reality and on what lies beyond reality's surface, puts one in mind of the darker side of Stevie Smith who said that poetry 's a strong explosion in the sky'. -- Penelope Shuttle
A direct approach, via deep folklore and dream imagery, to the conundrum of being a woman...in keeping with what I think we mean when we say 'women's writing'. This book is mischievously dark, rich with anti-logic and harnessed to the power of something we used to call magic. -- Katy Evans-Bush * on Waiting for Bluebeard *
She is a visually precise poet, with the gift of creating stunning images with an economy of means...Ivory has established an eerily engaging style. Her poems are like mobiles suspended on invisible threads, charming to watch as they seem to spin by themselves in the air, but capable of administering more than a paper cut on the sensibility of the reader. -- James Sutherland-Smith

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