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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:
October 23, 2019

MEDIA CONTACT:
Stefania Heim
Western Washington University
stefania.heim@wwu.edu
(360) 650-3350

Western Washington University's Stefania Heim Publishes New Book on Giorgio de Chirico

Western Washington University Assistant Professor of English, Stefania Heim recently published “Geometry of Shadows,” a collection of translated poems from early 20th-century surrealist Giorgio de Chirico.

Better known for his visual works, de Chirico started writing poems in his native Italian language during World War I and continued sporadically until his death in 1978. Over the course of five years, Heim translated de Chirico’s poems to bring them to a contemporary audience.


Western Washington Universitys Sefania Heim Publishes New Book On Giorgio De Chirico

“People often say that they don’t translate because they don’t know another language well enough,” Heim said. “But really, you need to know English well enough to make [it] dance in ways you didn’t think it could before. It’s playing with words like they’re tangible and malleable — like clay.”

According to Heim, it took her five years to ‘get the book right’ simply based on how radial and bizarre the poems were.

De Chirico purposely plays with the ambiguity of lines, Heim said. The desire to recapture the strangeness of his poems in English kept her going.

“It really felt important to me that he be read as a poet in this book,” Heim said. “When someone is really famous as a visual artist, their writings are sometimes seen as an explainer of their artwork.”

Heim says this isn’t the case with de Chirico, and that there was an importance behind bringing these poems to light in English to help people know that the poems deserve to stand on their own.“Geometry of Shadows” is available at A Public Space Books publishing at apublicspace.org/books/geometry-of-shadows. For more information about Heim, visit her website at stefaniaheim.com or email her at stefania.heim@wwu.edu.

        We acknowledge that Whatcom County is located on the unceded territory of the Coast Salish Peoples. They cared for the lands that included what we’d call the Puget Sound region, Vancouver Island and British Columbia since time immemorial. This gives us the great obligation and opportunity to learn how to care for our surrounding areas and all the natural and human resources we require to live. We express our deepest respect and gratitude for our indigenous neighbors, the Lummi Nation and Nooksack Tribe, for their enduring care and protection of our shared lands and waterways.
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