Jeff Nuttall

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Jeff Nuttall (July 8, 1933 – January 4, 2004) was an English poet, publisher, actor, painter, sculptor, jazz trumpeter, anarchist sympathiser and social commentator who was a key part of the British 1960s counter-culture. He was the brother of literary critic A.D. Nuttall.

Nuttall was born in Clitheroe, Lancashire, and grew up in Herefordshire. He studied painting in the years after the Second World War and began publishing poetry in the early 1960s. Together with Bob Cobbing, he founded the influential Writers Forum Press and writers workshop. He also associated with many of the American beat generation writers, especially William Burroughs.

In 1966 he was one of the founders of The People Show, an early and long-lasting performance art group.

His 1968 book Bomb Culture was one of the key texts of the countercultural revolution of the time, a work which drew the links between the emergence of alternatives to mainstream societal norms and the threatening backdrop of potential nuclear cataclysm. Nuttall was one of the pioneers of the happening in Britain.

Nuttall served as Chairman of the National Poetry Society from 1975 to 1976, a period when the Society briefly served as a home for the British Poetry Revival. He was poetry critic for a number of national newspapers and was the Poetry Society nominee for Poet Laureate but was overlooked in favour of Ted Hughes.

Nuttall worked as an art teacher. In his later life he appeared in several films and on TV. His Selected Poems was published in 2003.


  • Poems (1963) with Keith Musgrove
  • The Limbless Virtuoso (1963) with Keith Musgrove
  • The Change (1963) with Allen Ginsberg
  • Poems I Want to Forget (1965)
  • Come Back Sweet Prince: A Novelette (1966)
  • Pieces of Poetry (1966)
  • The Case of Isabel and the Bleeding Foetus (1967)
  • Songs Sacred and Secular (1967)
  • Bomb Culture (1968) cultural criticism
  • Penguin Modern Poets 12 (1968) with Alan Jackson and William Wantling
  • Journals (1968)
  • Love Poems (1969)
  • Mr. Watkins Got Drunk and Had to Be Carried Home: A Cut-up Piece (1969)
  • Pig (1969)
  • Jeff Nuttall: Poems 1962 – 1969 (1970)
  • Oscar Christ and the Immaculate Conception (1970)
  • The Foxes' Lair (1972)
  • Fatty Feedemall's Secret Self: A Dream (1975)
  • The Anatomy of My Father's Corpse (1975)
  • Man Not Man (1975)
  • The House Party (1975)
  • Snipe's Spinster (1975) novel
  • Objects (1976)
  • Common Factors, Vulgar Factions (1977) with Rodick Carmichael
  • King Twist : a Portrait of Frank Randle (1978) biography of music hall comedian
  • The Gold Hole (1978)
  • What Happened to Jackson (1978)
  • Grape Notes, Apple Music (1979)
  • Performance Art (1979/80) memoirs and scripts, two volumes
  • Muscle (1982)
  • Visual Alchemy (1987) with Bohuslav Barlow
  • The Bald Soprano. A Portrait of Lol Coxhill (1989)
  • Art and the Degradation of Awareness (1999)
  • The 10th Kingdom (2000) TV miniseries - as the Royal Chef
  • Selected Poems (2003)
  • Biography and a poem
  • Selected Poems listing
  • The People Show history
  • The Life and Works of Jeff Nuttall
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