FABER & FABER LTD // NINA SIMONE’S GUM // BOOK BY WARREN ELLIS
The unexpected and inspiring story of a piece of chewing gum.
‘Warren has turned this memento, snatched from his idol’s piano in a moment of rapture, into a genuine religious artifact.
On July 1, 1999, Dr. Nina Simone gave a rare performance, fated to be one of her last in Britain. After the show, in a state of transcendent awe, Warren Ellis crept onto the stage and took Simone’s piece of chewed gum from the piano, wrapped it in her stage towel and placed it in a Tower Records bag.
The gum remained with Ellis for twenty years – a sacred totem, his creative muse – until 2019, when Nick Cave, his collaborator and great friend, asked him if he had anything he could contribute to Cave’s Stranger Than Kindness exhibition.
This book is an exploration, both in photos and text how something seemingly insignificant and disposable can form beautiful connections between people. And how these things can become imbued with spirituality.
Published by Faber Press // Author Warren Ellis
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