I Could Read the Sky

Timothy O'Grady, Steve Pike (photog.)

I Could Read the Sky
United Kingdom
1 February 2024

I Could Read the Sky

Timothy O'Grady, Steve Pike (photog.)

I Could Read the Sky is a collaboration, in the shape of a lyrical novel, between writer Timothy O'Grady and photographer Steve Pyke. 

It tells the story of a man coming of age in the middle of this century. Now at its end, he finds himself alone, struggling to make sense of a life of dislocation and loss. He remembers his childhood in the west of Ireland and his decades of bewildered exile in the factories, potato fields and on the building sites of England. He is haunted by the faces of the family he left behind and by the land that is still within him. He remembers the country and the seascapes, the bars and the boxing booths, the music he played, and the woman he loved.

This elegiac narrative is accompanied by a succession of photographs taken by Pyke during his travels in Ireland — from starkly beautiful landscapes to unforgettable portraits and scenes from everyday life — which in their counterpoint with the text produce a powerful evocation of the Irish emigrant experience.

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