“In December 1988, two days before the end of the year and less than a month before the end of his life, Bruce Chatwin dictated an encouraging letter to his friend and eventual biographer, Nicholas Shakespeare: ‘So what’s so awful about writing another book,’ he queried. ‘You can’t escape your vocation’.
Writing did not always seem destined to be Bruce Chatwin’s vocation; a sequence of false starts had to be navigated before he eventually settled down to his career. It became, however, the one steady element of a life defined by changes of direction; the only entanglement from which he never turned away.”
From: Anywhere Out of the World: The Work of Bruce Chatwin by Jonathan Chatwin.
'In Anywhere Out of the World Jonathan Chatwin convincingly argues that Chatwin's fascination with the nature of human restlessness is at the core of all his writing as well as his restless lifestyle. [An] intelligent and readable survey ... Jonathan Chatwin's acute probing yields the best account yet of the origins of [Bruce] Chatwin's restless mania.' Nicholas Murray, The TLS, 15th February 2013
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Manchester University Press
Further to the news earlier in the year that Burberry’s design chief had found inspiration in Bruce Chatwin’s books, the company have released a beautiful, limited edition, set of Chatwin’s novels. More details, and the possibility of ordering a set (for £495) here
In what some might see as a sign of the continuing commodification of Bruce Chatwin’s legacy, fashion house Burberry have launched a range of Chatwin inspired travel bags
. Christopher Bailey, Burberry’s design chief, acknowledged the influence of Chatwin on his work last year at the launch of his menswear collection. He told the Evening Standard
: “I found an old first edition book by Bruce Chatwin and became drawn in to his nomadic lifestyle. All the colours in the collection came from book covers and the more relaxed, easy spirit came from Chatwin himself and the nomadic spirit inside him.”
Image Credit: Burberry