The White Review No. 13 features an interview with poet and novelist Ben Lerner, touching on what it means for art to be politically engaged and the potential of writing to defeat time. Painter Lynette Yiadom-Boakye discusses the confluence of technique and feeling in her portraiture, while novelist Michel Faber talks about love, loss and language. The potential of art to accurately capture the human subject is a theme of the issue, one taken up by painter Luke Rudolf and the Japanese photographer Daisuke Yokota in two series reproduced within. New forms, and new grammars, are characteristic of the celebrated work of Jorie Graham – featured here – and the British poet and sound artist Holly Pester.
Self-declared left wing anarch Federico Campagna, meanwhile, considers whether the new Pope might really be the unlikely saviour of the global Left, while Enrique Vila-Matas (translated by our very own J. S. Tennant) reflects on Roberto Bolaño and the ‘times when writers were like gods and lived in the mountains like craven hermits or lunatic aristocrats’. Back in London, Jon Day recounts stories from the curious subculture of the capital’s bicycle couriers and the ‘heroic age’ of cycling. One of Britain’s most innovative young writers, Helen Oyeyemi, contributes a new story, and we are delighted to print a section from Edouard Levé’s newly-translated (by Jan Steyn and Caite Dolan-Leach) Newspaper. In an excerpt from his forthcoming novel, Paul Murray presents a Dublin banker whose already unreal lifestyle threatens to fade into fiction. Finally, as the third White Review Short Story Prize comes to its conclusion, we are thrilled to publish a new story by Claire-Louise Bennett, our inaugural laureate, from her forthcoming collection, Pond.