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A DAY OF POETRY TO CELEBRATE ROBERT KELLY'S 40 YEARS AT BARD COLLEGE November 10 program features poetry readings, performances, and a Stan Brakhage film

Emily Darrow

ANNANDALE-ON-HUDSON, N.Y.-A Day of Poetry to Celebrate Robert Kelly's 40 years at Bard begins at 1:30 p.m. in Olin Hall on Saturday, November 10, and is free and open to the public. The program honors Kelly, the Asher B. Edelman Professor of English at Bard, and will feature poetry readings, performances, and a screening of a Stan Brakhage film.

At 1:30 p.m., there will be readings by five distinguished former students of Kelly at Bard-Mary Caponegro, '78 (the Richard B. Fisher Family Professor in Literature and Writing at Bard); Pierre Joris, '69; Kimberly Lyons, '81; Thomas Meyer, '69; and John Yau, '72. They will be followed by readings by Kelly's current senior project students Jennifer Cazenave, Ian Dreiblatt, and Robyn Carliss (all '02). The readings will be presented by Terence Boylan, '70.

At 3:30 p.m., following an intermission, Kelly's faculty colleagues at Bard will read from their work. The readers include John Ashbery, Charles P. Stevenson Jr. Professor of Languages and Literature; Ann Lauterbach, Ruth and David E. Schwab II Professor in Languages and Literature; Joan Retallack, John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Professor of Humanities; Bob Holman, visiting professor of writing and integrated arts. Leonard Schwartz, visiting assistant professor of integrated arts and first-year seminar; Mathias Göritz, visiting assistant professor of German; and Jeffrey Katz, dean of Information Services and director of Bard's libraries, will also read from their work, as will Robert Kelly. This segment of the program will be presented by William Weaver, professor of literature at Bard College and a Bard Center Fellow.

Following a reception in the Olin Atrium, the evening performance begins at 6:30 p.m. An introduction followed by a presentation to Kelly will be given by Leon Botstein, president of Bard College. Nicole Peyrafitte, a multimedia performance artist, will perform songs she composed based on Kelly's Not This Island Music (translated into French by Charlotte Mandell '90). The film "Portrait of Robert Kelly" (1967), from Fifteen Song Traits (1967-86) by Stan Brakhage, will then be shown. Brakhage is "the most important nonnarrative filmmaker of the past two generations," according to Larry Kardish, curator of film exhibitions for the Museum of Modern Art, New York. The program concludes with Sudden Ekphrasis!, a performance of some of Robert Kelly's works by participants in the Integrated Arts Major Conference directed by Bob Holman and Jeffrey Sichel. John Pruitt, associate professor of film, will present this part of the program.

Robert Kelly has taught at Bard since 1961. He founded the Milton Avery Graduate School of the Arts writing program in 1980, and directed it for a dozen years. He has received a number of grants and awards, including a prize from the American Academy and Institute of Arts and Letters and an honorary doctor of letters degree from the State University of New York. He is the author of more than 50 books of poetry (including Red Actions, a selection of poems from 1960?1993), several novels, and four collections of shorter fiction. His most recent books are Mont Blanc (a writing-through of Shelley's eponymous poem), The Time of Voice, Runes, and The Garden of Distances, the last a collaboration with Tyrolean painter Brigitte Mahlknecht. Lapis, poems 1997?2000, will be published next winter. Kelly is working on a new novel and a collection of critical and theoretical essays, as well as on Orion: Opening the Seals, a long poem whose opening section can be found in the latest issue of Conjunctions, of which he is a contributing editor.

For further information, call 845-758-6822.

About the Artists:

John Ashbery is the poet laureate of New York State. He received a National Book Critics Circle Award, a National Book Award, and a Pulitzer Prize for his Self-Portrait in a Convex Mirror, published in 1975. His other poetry collections include Some Trees; The Tennis Court Oath; Rivers and Mountains; Shadow Train; April Galleons; Hotel Latréamont; And the Stars Were Shining; Can You Hear, Bird; Wakefulness; and Girls on the Run. Ashbery is also the author of three plays, a novel (with James Schuyler), Reported Sightings: Art Chronicles 1957?1987, articles on art criticism and translation, and verse set to music. His other awards and honors include the Bollingen Prize in Poetry; MacArthur Foundation Fellowship; Common Wealth Award in Literature, Modern Language Association; Horst Bienek Prize, Bavarian Academy of Fine Arts, Munich; Antonio Feltrinelli Prize for Literature, Rome; Chevalier des Arts et Lettres (awarded by France); Robert Frost Medal, Poetry Society of America; and the Gold Medal for Poetry, American Academy of Arts and Letters. Ashbery also served as chancellor of the Academy of American Poets in 1988.

Mary Caponegro is the author of four short story collections: Tales from the Next Village, The Star Café, Five Doubts, and the recently released The Complexities of Intimacy: Stories. She is a contributor to Review of Contemporary Fiction, Epoch, Conjunctions, Sulfur, Gargoyle, and Iowa Review, and a contributing editor for Conjunctions and Tyuonyi. Caponegro has received the General Electric Foundation Award for Younger Writers, the Rome Prize Fellowship in Literature from American Academy and Institute of Arts and Letters, Charles Flint Kellogg Award in Arts and Letters from Bard College, Teacher of the Year Award from Hobart and William Smith Colleges, and the Undergraduate Teaching Award from Syracuse University.

Matthias Göritz taught at the University of Hamburg, and at universities in Kiel, Lübeck, and Lüneberg, Germany. His books include Loops (poems) and Hamburg. Chicago. Eine Literarische Expedition (editor). He is the recipient of fellowships from Ledig-Rowohlt Foundation, Poet's Exchange of the City of Marseille, Chicago/Hamburg Writers' Exchange, and the Rudolf and Erika Koch Foundation.

Bob Holman has been described by Henry Louis Gates in the New Yorker as "the postmodern promoter who has done more to bring poetry to cafes and bars than anyone since Ferlinghetti." Holman produced a five-part series for PBS, The United States of Poetry, and coedited the accompanying book. He directs the Nuyorican Poets Café in New York City and coedited Aloud! Voices from the Nuyorican Poets Café, winner of the American Book Award. His most recent collection of poetry is The Collect Call of the Wild.

Pierre Joris is professor of English at the State University of New York, Albany. Born and raised in Luxembourg, he is an internationally recognized poet. His recently published works include a global anthology of avant-garde poetry, Poems for the Millennium, compiled and edited with Jerome Rothenberg; a manifesto-essay, "Towards a Nomadic Poetics"; and a book of poems from OtherWind Press. He also has translated Kelly's A Transparent Tree into French.

Jeffrey Katz was a Massachusetts Artists' Foundation Fellow in Poetry in 1990 and his work has appeared in numerous small press publications.

Ann Lauterbach is on the faculty of Bard's Milton Avery Graduate School of the Arts, where she directs the writing program. In addition to her forthcoming volume of selected poems, If in Time (April 2001), her collections of poetry include On a Stair; And For Example; Clamor; Before Recollection; and Many Times, But Then. She has contributed poems and essays to numerous journals, including Conjunctions, where she has served as contributing editor since 1981. Lauterbach has written on art and poetics in relation to contemporary culture, most recently in a series of columns for the American Poetry Review titled "The Night Sky." She has also written essays on sculptor David Smith's writings and drawings, and a collaborative work for sculptor Ann Hamilton's Whitecloth catalogue for the Aldrich Museum in Connecticut. Lauterbach has taught at Brooklyn College, Columbia University, Princeton University, Denver University, City College of New York, and Graduate Center of the City of New York. She is the recipient of a MacArthur Fellowship, as well as grants from the New York State Foundation for the Arts, Ingram Merrill Foundation, and the Guggenheim Foundation.

Kimberly Lyons has published six poetry chapbooks and Abacadabra (Granary Books). She was the director of the St. Mark's Poetry Project in New York.

Thomas Meyer lives in the mountains of western North Carolina and the Yorkshire Dales. Much of his time over the past decade has been taken up by three collaborations with the late Sandra Fisher, Sappho, Sonnets & Tableaux, and Montotypes & Tracings. He has translated works from ancient Chinese and Sanskrit, and he studies Vedic astrology. His most recent work is At Dusk Iridescent: A Gathering of Poems 1972-1997.

Nicole Peyrafitte, a native of France, modeled, cooked, and worked for theater and local television in Paris and Toulouse before moving to the United States, where she now resides in Albany, New York. Her work includes paintings, drawings, collages, writing, computer animation, voice works, and performances.

Joan Retallack is the author of six books of poetry, including the first in a three-part series, MONGRELISME: A Difficult Manual for Desperate Times, How To Do Things With Words, and AFTERRIMAGES. She received a Lannan Foundation Literary Grant for Poetry in 1998?99. Her edition of artists' books, WESTORN CIV CONT'D, AN OPEN BOOK, was produced with partial funding from the National Endowment for the Arts. Retallack received the America Award in Belles-Lettres for M U S I C A G E, her book on and in collaboration with composer John Cage. A book of interrelated essays, The Poethetical Wager, and a book on Gertrude Stein are forthcoming from the University of California Press, Berkeley. Retallack is also codirector of the Workshop in Language and Thinking at Bard College.

Leonard Schwartz is visiting assistant professor of integrated arts and first-year seminar. He is the author of five poetry collections, including Words Before the Articulate, Gnostic Blessing, Exiles: Ends, Objects of Thought, and Attempts at Speech; and a book of collected essays, A Flicker at the Edge of Things. He coedited An Anthology of New American Poetry and Primary Trouble, and has had poems published in Trafika, First Intensity, Agni, Five Fingers Review, and other journals. He has also published essays and reviews in Talisman, Poetry Flash, Asylum, Conjunctions, Afterimage, Film Quarterly, and literary translations in Harper's and Partisan Review. Schwartz was the poet in residence at the Lacoste School of the Arts in France for two summers (1999, 2000).

Jeffrey Sichel, assistant professor of theater at Bard, is founder and artistic director of his own off-Broadway company, the Empty Space Theatre Company. He was a musical collaborator with Gordon Gano of the band Violent Femmes and has worked with the New York Theatre Workshop. Formerly assistant director of the Obie Award-winning En Garde Arts, Sichel also has worked with Julie Taymor, director of The Lion King; the producers of Rent; and The Knitting Factory. Sichel was artist in residence at Bard's Lacoste School of the Arts in France.

John Yau has published books of poetry, fiction, and criticism, and has contributed essays to many catalogues and monographs. His collections of poetry include Forbidden Entries, Berlin Diptychon, and Edificio Sayonara. Books of criticism include In the Realm of Appearances: The Art of Andy Warhol and The United States of Jasper Johns. He has written a book of short fiction titled My Symptoms; edited an anthology of fiction, Fetish; and coedited The Collected Poems of Fairfield Porter.

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This event was last updated on 11-02-2001