Heart Archives

BOOK £10, ISBN 978-0-9572738-1-8 | PRINT £20 | BUY HERE

Hercules Editions is pleased to announce the publication of Heart Archives, a chapbook of sonnets on family and legacy by Sue Rose.


The Heart Archives sonnet cycle was originally inspired by the work of the French artist Christian Boltanski, and references his long-term project Les Archives du Coeur, in which he records heartbeats and stores them on a Japanese island. Sue Rose’s poems extend Boltanski’s work to explore the notion of ‘personal archaeology’, considering the way we create individual archives of photographs, objects and letters, and how our ideas of archive and memory have altered in the digital age. 
“I love this book” – Baroness Julia Neuberger
“Poems and images of a sharp, almost savage tenderness” – George Szirtes
“Meanings accumulate, one poem deepening another” – Gillian Clarke
“Offers tough, unflinching reflections on all the big themes” – Matthew Reisz



The first edition, limited to 300 copies, takes the format of a beautifully-designed and hand-finished “archive in a book”:
• Includes an illuminating foreword by the poet, and an afterword by the art critic Ben Luke, discussing the work of Christian Boltanski.
• Comprises a sequence of 14 sonnets, each facing a photo taken by the poet, of items belonging to her family and her past.
• Echoing the sonnets’ themes of family and memory, the visual language of the book is based on an old archive box belonging to the poet’s father.
• In the manner of an old book, each photo has been individually “tipped-in” (that is, printed on a separate sheet, and taped on by hand).
• Each photo overlays  an image of wallpaper belonging to the poet’s family. Around each photo, the wallpaper has “faded”  – which is only revealed if photo is lifted up.


Heart Archives Print (whole package) 1010-RGB-1000pxAccompanying the Heart Archives book is a limited edition print featuring its penultimate poem, the love sonnet B24031947. Beautifully produced and innovative in form, just 50 copies are available, each signed and numbered by the author. It is printed in red and black on heavy cream card using the old-fashioned technique of thermography, which produces raised, shiny text with a tactile quality redolent of the archive. Affixed next to the poem are real photo corners, and the print is accompanied by a tissue-lined pouch containing all 14 loose-leaf photos from the book, so you can insert whichever image suits your mood. All elements come packaged in a stout red wallet, complete with archive labels. At a practical A4 in size, the print is easy to frame, mount, or simply pin up, and costs just £20 from our shop. (Note, if you are a member of the Poetry Society, they currently have a special £15 offer on the print available exclusively via their members’ newsletter of 28 April 2014.)


The limited first edition chapbook with tipped-in photos, priced at just £10, is likely to sell out quickly – if you’d like to buy a copy, visit the Hercules Editions shop here.

Below: some more images from the book and, at bottom, the print.







Heart Archives Print (print alone) 0878-RGB-1000px

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