“Twenty Years of Creative Artists in the Collections” A panel presentation featuring Honorée Jeffers, Ann Lovett, and Stephen O’Connor
For twenty years AAS has offered fellowships to creative and performing artists and writers. Since 1995, 91 people working in all kinds of artistic disciplines from throughout the United States have come to the AAS library and conducted research for historical works designed for the general public. Join us for a panel presentation by a poet, a visual artist, and a fiction writer who will describe their experiences as fellows, share samples of their works, and reflect on how history and historical research has shaped their artist visions and their careers as professional artists.
Honorée Jeffers is a poet, fiction writer, and cultural critic. She is the author of four books of poetry. Her first book, The Gospel of Barbecue (2000), won the Stan and Tom Wick poetry prize and was a 2001 Paterson Poetry prize finalist. Her collections also include Outlandish Blues (2003); Red Clay Suite (2007), which received second prize in the Crab Orchard Review’s open competition; and The Glory Gets (2015). Jeffers’s poetry has appeared in the American Poetry Review, Callaloo, the Iowa Review, Ploughshares, and Prairie Schooner. Her work has been anthologized in numerous volumes, including Angles of Ascent: A Norton Anthology of Contemporary African American Poetry (2013), and The Civil Rights Reader: American Literature from Jim Crow to Reconciliation (2009). Jeffers has also published fiction in the Indiana Review, the Kenyon Review, the New England Review, and Story Quarterly. She was a Baron Creative Artist Fellow at AAS in 2009, when she conducted research for The Age of Phillis, a book of historical poetry imagining the life and times of Phillis Wheatley, the eighteenth-century black American poetess.
Stephen O’Connor is the author of two collections of short fiction - Here Comes Another Lesson (2010) and Rescue (1989) - and of two works of nonfiction, Will My Name Be Shouted Out?(1997), a memoir, and Orphan Trains; The Story of Charles Loring Brace and the Children He Saved and Failed (2001), biography/history. His novel, Thomas Jefferson Dreams of Sally Hemings, is forthcoming from Viking-Penguin. His fiction has appeared in The New Yorker, Conjunctions, One Story, and Best American Short Stories, among many other places, and his story "Ziggurat" was read by Tim Curry on Selected Shorts. His poems have appeared in Poetry, The Missouri Review, Green Mountain Review, and elsewhere. His essays and journalism have been published in The New York Times, DoubleTake, The Nation, Agni, The Chicago Tribune, The Boston Globe, and The New Labor Forum. O’Connor teaches in the MFA programs of Columbia University and Sarah Lawrence College. O’Connor researched Orphan Trains while in residence at AAS in 1997.
Ann Lovett is a visual artist who works in photography, encaustic painting, and creates artist books. She has exhibited widely, including at the Museum of Arts and Design, New York; Klingspor-Museum, Offenbach, Germany; Museum fur Angewandte Kunst, Frankfurt, Germany; Monique Goldstrom Gallery, New York; National Museum of Women in the Arts, Washington, D.C.; and many others. Her work is represented in national and international collections and has been recognized by a New York Foundation for the Arts Fellowship in Photography, a New York State Council on the Arts Decentralization Grant, and the New York State Council on the Arts Individual Artists Program. She has been an artist in residence at the Tyrone Guthrie Centre in Ireland and the Visiting Artist’s and Scholar’s Program at the American Academy in Rome. Lovett is a professor of art at the State University of New York, New Paltz. She held a William Randolph Hearst Creative Artist Fellowship at AAS in 2009.