5.3 — 28 February 2018
Kenji C. Liu (劉謙司) is author of Map of an Onion, national winner of the 2015 Hillary Gravendyk Poetry Prize, and Monsters I Have Been, forthcoming from Alice James Books (2019). His poetry is in American Poetry Review, Anomaly, Action Yes!, Split This Rock’s poem of the week series, several anthologies, and two chapbooks, Craters: A Field Guide (2017) and You Left Without Your Shoes (2009). A Kundiman fellow and an alumnus of VONA/Voices, the Djerassi Resident Artist Program, and the Community of Writers, he lives in Los Angeles.
Claire Schwartz is a PhD candidate in African American Studies and American Studies at Yale. Her poetry has appeared in Apogee, Beloit Poetry Journal, The Massachusetts Review, and Prairie Schooner, and her essays, reviews, and interviews in The Iowa Review, Los Angeles Review of Books, Virginia Quarterly Review, and elsewhere. Her chapbook, bound, was published by Button Poetry in February 2018.
Benedict Robinson teaches early modern poetry and drama at Stony Brook University. He lives in Brooklyn.
Taha Ahmad is a documentary photographer born in Lucknow and based in Delhi, India. He has been the recipient of The Documentary Project Fund Emerging Vision Award 2017, TOTO-Tasveer Award for Photography and the Neel Dongre Grant/Award for Excellence in Photography. His work has been published by Invisible Photographer Asia, The Sunday Guardian, Times of India, MUSÉE Magazine, Asian Age and many other publications. This series, “Swan Song of the Badlas,” follows the last remaining artisans of the traditional mukaish badla embroidery, which flourished in the 18th century. Though there were once 3,000 mukaish badla artisans in Lucknow, that number is now closer to 25, all of them over the age of 65. Ahmad is currently pursuing his Masters in Fine Arts from Jamia Millia Islamia University, New Delhi.
5.2 — 5 February 2018
Ama Codjoe was raised in Youngstown, Ohio with roots in Memphis and Accra. She has been awarded support from the Saltonstall Foundation, the Cave Canem Foundation, the Callaloo Creative Writing Workshop, and the MacDowell Colony. Her recent poems have appeared or are forthcoming in Callaloo, Virginia Quarterly Review, Four Way Review, Adroit Journal and elsewhere. She is a two-time Pushcart nominee. In 2017, Ama was awarded a Rona Jaffe Writer’s Award.
Hanif Abdurraqib is a poet, writer, and cultural critic from Columbus, Ohio. His first collection of poems, The Crown Ain’t Worth Much, was released by Button Poetry in 2016. His first essay collection, They Can’t Kill Us Until They Kill Us, is available from Two Dollar Radio now.
Valgerður Þóroddsdóttir (born 1989) is a poet, publisher, writer and literary curator. She is the founder and director of Partus Press, an independent publisher of poetry and prose based in Reykjavík, Iceland, and Manchester, United Kingdom, and the founder of the literary journal Pain, which launched in summer 2017. Valgerður was nominated on behalf of Iceland to the PEN International New Voices Award (2014) and has had poetry published in a number of anthologies and magazines including Gutter, SAND, Magma, and Beijing Trondheim.
K. B. Thors is a poet from rural Alberta, Canada. Her debut collection Vulgar Mechanics will be published by Coach House Books in 2019. Her translation of Stormwarning by Icelandic poet Kristín Svava Tómasdóttir won the American Scandinavian Foundation’s Leif and Inger Sjöberg Prize—a bilingual edition will be published by Phoneme Media in Spring 2018. A chapbook of her Spanish-English translation of a Chintungo: The Story of Someone Else by Soledad Marambio is available from Ugly Ducking Presse. Her essays and poems have been published across the U.S., U.K, and Canada. She holds an MFA in Creative Writing from Columbia University, where she was a Teaching Fellow in Poetry, and splits her time between Toronto and Alberta.
Gohar Dashti received her MA in Photography from the Fine Art University of Tehran in 2005. She has received several residencies and scholarships such as MacDowell Colony, the DAAD Award, Visiting Arts, and Art Bridge. Her works have been exhibited in biennales and festivals around the world, and are part of collections including the Victoria and Albert Museum, the Mori Art Museum, the Museum of Fine Arts (Boston), the National Gallery of Art (Washington DC), and the Kadist Art Foundation (Paris), among others. She has spent the last 12 years of her practice focusing primarily on social issues, with particular references to history and culture, through a convergence of interests in anthropology and sociology. Her practice continuously develops from life events and connections between the personal and the universal, the political and the fantasised.
5.1 — 16 January 2018
Kathryn Nuernberger is the author of two poetry collections, The End of Pink, which received the James Laughlin award from the Academy of American Poets, and Rag & Bone, which won the Antivenom Prize from Elixir Press. Her collection of lyric essays is Brief Interviews with the Romantic Past (Ohio State University Press, 2017). Recent poems have appeared in 32 Poems, Cincinnati Review, Crazyhorse, Field, Prairie Schooner, West Branch and elsewhere. She is an associate professor of Creative Writing at University of Central Missouri, where she also serves as the director of Pleiades Press.
Emilia Phillips is the author of two poetry collections from the University of Akron Press, Signaletics (2013) and Groundspeed (2016), and three chapbooks, most recently Beneath the Ice Fish Like Souls Look Alike (Bull City Press, 2015). Her poems and lyric essays appear widely in literary publications including Agni, Boston Review, Ploughshares, Poetry, and elsewhere. She’s an assistant professor in the MFA Writing Program and the Department of English at the University of North Carolina at Greensboro. Her third book, Empty Clip, will be published by the University of Akron Press Spring 2018.
Mario Meléndez studied Journalism at La República University of Santiago, Chile. Among his books are Autocultura y juicio (with a prologue from the National Prize of Literature winter, Roque Esteban Scarpa), Apuntes para una leyenda, and Vuelo subterráneo. He has received the Municipal Prize of Literature in the Bicentennial of Linares, Chile. Meléndez’s poems have appeared in different magazines of Latin-American literature and in foreign anthologies. His poetry has been translated into many languages including Italian, Arabic, English, and German.
Eloisa Amezcua is an Arizona native. Her debut collection, From the Inside Quietly, is the inaugural winner of the Shelterbelt Poetry Prize selected by Ada Limón. She is the author of three chapbooks and is the founder and editor of The Shallow Ends: A Journal of Poetry.
June Glasson is an artist, illustrator and designer. She lives in Laramie, Wyoming. Her paintings have been exhibited at the National Portrait Gallery in London, Nature Morte Gallery in Berlin, and various New York and stateside galleries and museums. They have also appeared in New American Paintings, The Paris Review, The Wall Street Journal, and Diner Journal, as well as in the film My Idiot Brother. She has also designed and fabricated exhibitions and displays for the Center for Urban Pedagogy, Bergdorf Goodman, Bumble and Bumble, and Crumpler Bags. She is the co-founder of the Wyoming Art Party.
4.4 — 19 June 2017
Melissa Cundieff-Pexa received an MFA in poetry from Vanderbilt. Her poems appear most recently in Ninth Letter, Linebreak, TriQuarterly, and Four Way Review. She lives in St.Paul, MN with her two children.
Theresa Lola is a British Nigerian poet. She was shortlisted for the 2016 Bridport Poetry Prize and 2016 London Magazine Poetry Prize. She is a Barbican Young Poet Alumni and is part of Octavia Collective led by Rachel Long and SXWKS collective. She won the 2017 Hammer and Tongue National Poetry Slam.
Momtaza Mehri is a poet, essayist and meme archivist. Her work has been featured in DAZED, Sukoon, Berkeley Poetry Review, VINYL, and Bone Bouquet. She is a Complete Works Fellow and winner of a 2017 Out-Spoken Poetry Prize. Her chapbook, sugah lump prayer, was published in 2017 as part of the New Generation African Poets series. She also co-edits Diaspora Drama, a digital platform showcasing international immigrant artists.
Ao Kim Ngân (a.k.a. Yatender) is an image-maker based in Saigon, Vietnam.
4.3 — 5 June 2017
Emily Vizzo is a writer, editor and educator whose work has appeared in FIELD, Blackbird, jubilat, North American Review, The Los Angeles Times, Next American City, and other publications. Her essay, “A Personal History of Dirt,” was honored as a notable essay in Best American Essays 2013, and she was selected for inclusion within Best New Poets 2015. Her chapbook, GIANTESS, is forthcoming in 2018 from YesYes Books.
Victoria Kennefick is the author of White Whale (Southword Editions, 2015) winner of the Munster Literature Centre Fool for Poetry Chapbook Competition and the Saboteur Award for Best Poetry Pamphlet. The recipient of the Red Line Book Festival Poetry Prize and a Next Generation Artist Bursary 2016 from the Arts Council of Ireland, her work has appeared in Poetry, Poetry News, Prelude, The Stinging Fly, Poetry Ireland Review, and elsewhere.
Kaitlin Rees was born in Wampsville, and has been commuting between New York and Hanoi since 2011. With Nhã Thuyên she founded AJAR, a small bilingual publishing press with an online journal and a poetry festival. Her translations of Nhã Thuyên’s poetry have been published in various literary spaces and as a full-length collection, words breathe, creatures of elsewhere (Vagabond Press, 2016). Her ongoing poetic artwork of compiling fragments of an infinite dictionary was exhibited at Zalaegerszeg, Hungary in 2015, and in the hutongs of Shanghai, China in 2016. She is the recipient of the PEN/Heim Translation Grant 2017 for translating A Parade, Nhã Thuyên’s upcoming book of poeticized prose that investigates linguistic questions through the lens of nonsense.
Nhã Thuyên writes, translates, edits books and sometimes organises literary events with friends. She has authored several books of poetry, short fiction and some tiny books for children. Her most recent poetry book, words breathe, creatures of elsewhere (từ thở, những người lạ) was originally published in Vietnamese in 2015. With Kaitlin Rees, she currently co-edits AJAR, a bilingual literary and art journal-press based in Hanoi. Among other projects, she is shaping a book of essays on marginalization in Vietnamese contemporary poetry.
Richard Atrero de Guzman (a.k.a, Bahag) is a Tokyo-based photographer and video journalist whose work has been featured widely in both local and international publications. Travelling extensively for the past eight years, he has been commissioned by core civic institutions like the United Nations and the Drik Picture Library in Dhaka, Bangladesh.
4.2 — 22 May 2017
Khairani Barokka is a writer, poet and artist in London. Among her honors, she was an NYU Tisch Departmental Fellow and Vermont Studio Center’s first Indonesian writer-in-residence, and is a UNFPA Indonesian Young Leader Driving Social Change for arts practice and research. She has presented work extensively, in nine countries, and is the recipient of multiple grants. Okka is co-editor of HEAT: A Southeast Asian Urban Anthology (Fixi 2016) and Stairs and Whispers: D/deaf and Disabled Poets Write Back (Nine Arches 2017), author-illustrator of Indigenous Species (Tilted Axis 2016) and author of forthcoming debut collection Rope (Nine Arches 2017). Work is published in Poetry Review, The New Inquiry, Asymptote, and other journals, anthologies and art books. She is a PhD by practice researcher in Goldsmiths’ Visual Cultures Department.
Kathy Fagan‘s fifth collection of poems is Sycamore (Milkweed Editions, 2017). Her first collection, The Raft, won the National Poetry Series; her second, MOVING & ST RAGE, won the Vassar Miller Poetry Prize. Recent work appears in Poetry, Numero Cinq, The New Republic, Blackbird, and The Adroit Journal. Fagan directs the MFA Program at The Ohio State University and serves as Series Editor of the OSU Press/The Journal Wheeler Poetry Prize.
Mary Jean Chan is a poet from Hong Kong. She won the 2016 Oxford Brookes International Poetry Competition (ESL), and has been shortlisted for the 2016 London Magazine Poetry Prize, the 2016 Rialto Open Pamphlet Competition, and the 2016 Resurgence Poetry Prize. Her work has appeared in The Poetry Review, The London Magazine, Callaloo Journal, The Rialto, Ambit Magazine, Bare Fiction Magazine, The Scores: A Journal of Poetry and Prose, Cha: An Asian Literary Journal, QLRS, and elsewhere. As a PhD candidate in Creative Writing (Poetry) at Royal Holloway, University of London, Mary Jean’s article “Towards a Poetics of Racial Trauma: Lyric Hybridity in Claudia Rankine’s Citizen” was recently published in The Journal of American Studies. A former VONA and Callaloo Fellow, Mary Jean is currently a Co-Editor at Oxford Poetry.
Robert Zhao Renhui is a multi-disciplinary artist who received a Bachelor of Arts in Photography from the Camberwell College of Arts in London and a Master of Arts in Photography from the London College of Communication. His work addresses man’s relationship with nature and presents different modes of the human gaze on nature, frequently highlighting how truth is constructed through a false naturalization and manipulation of beliefs. Zhao was the recipient of the United Overseas Bank Painting of the Year Award, Singapore (2009); the National Arts Council Singapore Young Artist Award (2010); and the Deutsche Bank Award in Photography by the University of the Arts London (2011). He was selected to participate in the 2013 President’s Young Talents exhibition at the Singapore Art Museum. His works have been shown widely in Singapore and abroad, including exhibitions at the Fukuoka Asian Art Museum, Japan; the Photo-Levallois Festival, Paris; the GoEun Museum of Photography, Korea and at the Singapore Biennale (2013). These images are from “Singapore, Very Old Tree,” a 30-piece collection on permanent display at the National Museum of Singapore.
4.1 — 8 May 2017
Sujata Bhatt was born in India. She grew up in India and in the USA. Her most recent books from Carcanet are Collected Poems (PBS Special Commendation, 2013) and Poppies in Translation (PBS Recommendation, 2015). She has received numerous awards including the Commonwealth Poetry Prize (Asia) and a Cholmondeley Award. In 2014, she was the first recipient of the Mexican International Poetry Prize, Premio Internacional de Poesía Nuevo Siglo de Oro 1914-2014. Her work has been widely anthologised, broadcast on radio and television, and has been translated into more than twenty languages. She divides her time between Germany and elsewhere.
Hala Alyan is a Palestinian American poet and clinical psychologist whose work has appeared in numerous journals including The Missouri Review, Prairie Schooner, and Columbia Poetry Review. Her poetry collection ATRIUM (Three Rooms Press) was awarded the 2013 Arab American Book Award in Poetry. FOUR CITIES, her second collection, was recently released by Black Lawrence Press. Her latest collection, HIJRA, was selected as a winner of the 2015 Crab Orchard Series in Poetry and was published by Southern Illinois University Press in 2016.
Victoria Adukwei Bulley is a British-born Ghanaian poet, writer and facilitator. A former Barbican Young Poet, her work has been commissioned by the Royal Academy of Arts, in addition to being featured on BBC Radio 4. She was shortlisted for the Brunel University African Poetry Prize 2016, and is one of ten poets on the acclaimed UK mentorship programme, The Complete Works. Her debut pamphlet, Girl B, is part of the 2017 New-Generation African Poets series, edited by Chris Abani and Kwame Dawes. She is the creative director of Mother Tongues, a forthcoming intergenerational poetry, film and translation project supported by Arts Council England and Autograph ABP.
Nguan was born and raised in Singapore. He attended Northwesterm University in Illinois and graduated with a degree in Film and Video Production. Nguan’s photographs are about big city yearning, ordinary fantasies and emotional globalization. His first book Shibuya (2010) was named in PDN Annual as one of the best of the year. His second book, How Loneliness Goes (2013), was called “a masterful color portrait of quiet urban lives” by American Photo. How Loneliness Goes was presented as a solo exhibition at the 2015 M1 Singapore Fringe Festival, and was part of group shows at Para Site in Hong Kong and SFAQ [Project] Space in San Francisco. Nguan’s photographs are in the permanent collection of the Singapore Art Museum (SAM).
3.4 — 20 March 2017
Matthew Olzmann is the author of two collections of poems, Mezzanines, which was selected for the Kundiman Prize, and Contradictions in the Design (both from Alice James Books). He’s received fellowships from Kundiman, the Bread Loaf Writers’ Conference, and the Kresge Arts Foundation. His work has appeared in Kenyon Review, New England Review, Brevity, Southern Review, and elsewhere. He teaches in the MFA Program for Writers at Warren Wilson College.
Valerie Duff is the poetry editor of Salamander. A 2014 VCCA fellow in 2014, her work has recently appeared or is forthcoming in POETRY, The Common, and Cortland Review. Book reviews have appeared in The Wolf, PN Review, The Boston Globe, The Critical Flame, and elsewhere.
A native of Kentucky, Rebecca Gayle Howell is a senior editor for the Oxford American. Her debut poetry collection, Render / An Apocalypse, was a finalist for ForeWord’s Book of the Year. Howell is also the translator of Amal al-Jubouri’s verse memoir of the Iraq War, Hagar Before the Occupation/Hagar After the Occupation. A Library Journal Best Book of Poetry for 2011, Hagar Before the Occupation/Hagar After the Occupation received critical acclaim throughout the U.S., the Middle East, and India and was shortlisted for Three Percent’s Best Translated Book Award. Among Howell’s honors are fellowships from the Fine Arts Work Center in Provincetown and the Carson McCullers Center, as well as a Pushcart Prize. Howell’s latest book, American Purgatory, was selected by Don Share for The Sexton Prize; London’s Eyewear Publishing released the book to both the United Kingdom and the United States in early 2017.
Collier Nogues is the author of The Ground I Stand on Is Not My Ground, selected by Forrest Gander as winner of the 2014 Drunken Boat Poetry Book Contest, and On the Other Side, Blue (Four Way, 2011). Her bilingual, digital collaboration with Hong Kong poets and programmers about the ongoing aftereffects of Hong Kong’s Umbrella Movement launched in June 2016. Her work has been supported by fellowships and grants from the MacDowell Colony, the Ucross Foundation, Vermont Studio Center, and Lingnan University. She teaches creative writing in the Chinese University of Hong Kong’s MA Program in Literary Studies, and is a PhD Fellow at the University of Hong Kong, where she studies contemporary poetry’s response to US militarization. She also co-edits poetry for Juked and curates Hong Kong’s English-language poetry craft talk series.
3.3 — 6 March 2017
Eugenia Leigh is the author of Blood, Sparrows and Sparrows (Four Way Books), the winner of the 2015 Debut-litzer Prize in Poetry. The recipient of fellowships and awards from Poets & Writers Magazine, Kundiman, The Frost Place, Rattle, and the Asian American Literary Review, she received her MFA from Sarah Lawrence College and serves as the Poetry Editor of Hyphen.
Rowan Ricardo Phillips is the author of two volumes of poetry: The Ground (2012) and Heaven (2015), both published by Farrar, Straus and Giroux, as well as the critical volume When Blackness Rhymes with Blackness (2010). He translated, from the Catalan, Salvador Espriu’s story collection Ariadne in the Grotesque Labyrinth (2012). He is the recipient of the PEN/Joyce Osterweil Award, the Great Lakes Colleges Association New Writers Award for Poetry, a Whiting Award, a Guggenheim Fellowship, and the Anisfield-Wolf Book Award for Poetry.
Dante Alighieri’s (1265–1321) epic allegorical poem Commedia later renamed La Divina Commedia, is among the most significant works of Western literature. Dante completed the poem’s three sections, Inferno, Purgatorio, and Paradiso, early in the fourteenth century.
Elizabeth Metzger’s first collection, The Spirit Papers, won the 2016 Juniper Prize and will be published by University of Massachusetts Press in Winter 2017. Her poetry has recently appeared in The New Yorker, Best New Poets 2015, The Iowa Review, and elsewhere. She is the Poetry Editor of the Los Angeles Review of Books Quarterly Journal..
Elia Mauceri was born in 1987, and lives and works between Florence and Dicomano. He graduated from the Accademia di Belle Arti di Firenze under the guidance of Professor Adriano Bimbi. A winner of numerous awards and competitions, Mauceri has been a part of major exhibitions across Italy.
3.2 — 20 February 2017
Safiya Sinclair was born and raised in Montego Bay, Jamaica. She is the author of Cannibal (University of Nebraska Press, 2016), winner of the Prairie Schooner Book Prize in Poetry, longlisted for the Dylan Thomas Prize, the PEN Open Book Award, and named one of the American Library Association’s “Notable Books of the Year.” Sinclair is the recipient of a Whiting Writers’ Award, a Ruth Lilly and Dorothy Sargent Rosenberg Fellowship from the Poetry Foundation, fellowships from Yaddo, the Bread Loaf Writers’ Conference and the Fine Arts Work Center in Provincetown, and the Amy Clampitt Residency Award. Her poems have appeared or are forthcoming in Poetry, Kenyon Review, Granta, The Nation, New England Review, Boston Review, TriQuarterly, Oxford American, and elsewhere. She received her MFA in poetry at the University of Virginia, and is currently a PhD candidate in literature and creative writing at the University of Southern California.
Zohra Saed is the co-editor of One Story, Thirty Stories: An Anthology of Contemporary Afghan American Literature (University of Arkansas Press) and editor of Langston Hughes: Poems, Photos and Notebook from Turkestan (Lost & Found, The CUNY Poetics Documents Initiative). Her collaborative poetry chapbook with Sahar Muradi, Misspelled Cities/Falsch Geschrieben, was published for the dOCUMENTA 13 Notebook Series in English/German.Her essays on the Central Asian diaspora and their food history have appeared in Eating Asian America (NYU Press); along with Leila Christine Nadir, she edited Interviews/Essays in “Projects by Afghan American Writers and Artists” for The Asian American Literary Review. She is the co-founder and editor of Brooklyn-based UpSet Press and an Assistant Professor in English at Bard High School Early College, Queens.
Langston Hughes (1902-1967) was born in Joplin, Missouri, and grew up in Kansas, Illinois, and Ohio. In the 1920s, he gained a reputation as a poet, becoming a leading figure in what he called in his first autobiography “the black renaissance.” A prolific poet, prose-writer, and playwright, he served as an example to several generations of African American writers, always lending his support to younger people and new movements in the arts. From 1932-1933, Hughes traveled in the Soviet Union, spending much of his time in Central Asia and returning to the US with several notebooks, hundreds of photographs, and clippings of poems from the Central Asian writers he met there. This trip, along with his work in Spain on behalf of the Republic (featured in Lost & Found Series III), formed major episodes in Hughes’ public political engagement. While popular and known throughout the world, Hughes faced backlash at home. Despite his wishes to see work from this period gathered, these writings and photographs from his trip to the Soviet Union were never published in book form.
Kimiko Hahn is the author of three chapbooks and nine collections of poetry, including Brain Fever and Toxic Flora.