John Yau

John Yau

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John Yau is an American poet and critic
Critic
A critic is anyone who expresses a value judgement. Informally, criticism is a common aspect of all human expression and need not necessarily imply skilled or accurate expressions of judgement. Critical judgements, good or bad, may be positive , negative , or balanced...

 who lives in New York City
New York City
New York is the most populous city in the United States and the center of the New York Metropolitan Area, one of the most populous metropolitan areas in the world. New York exerts a significant impact upon global commerce, finance, media, art, fashion, research, technology, education, and...

. He received his B.A. from Bard College
Bard College
Bard College, founded in 1860 as "St. Stephen's College", is a small four-year liberal arts college located in Annandale-on-Hudson, New York.-Location:...

 in 1972 and his M.F.A. from Brooklyn College
Brooklyn College
Brooklyn College is a senior college of the City University of New York, located in Brooklyn, New York, United States.Established in 1930 by the New York City Board of Higher Education, the College had its beginnings as the Downtown Brooklyn branches of Hunter College and the City College of New...

 in 1978. He has published over 50 books of poetry, artists' books, fiction, and art criticism.

Life and career


According to Matthew Rohrer's profile on Yau from Poets & Writers
Poets & Writers
Poets & Writers, Inc. is one of the largest nonprofit literary organization in the United States serving poets, fiction writers, and creative nonfiction writers...

 Magazine
, Yau's parents settled in Boston after emigrating from China in 1949. His father was a bookkeeper. Yau characterizes his father as an outsider - "My father was half English and half Chinese [...] so he never fit in." As a child Yau was friends with the son of the Chinese-born abstract painter John Way. By the late 1960s Yau was exposed to, "a lot of anti-war poetry readings in Boston [and] so I'd heard Robert Bly
Robert Bly
Robert Bly is an American poet, author, activist and leader of the Mythopoetic Men's Movement.-Life:Bly was born in Lac qui Parle County, Minnesota, to Jacob and Alice Bly, who were of Norwegian ancestry. Following graduation from high school in 1944, he enlisted in the United States Navy, serving...

, Denise Levertov
Denise Levertov
-Early life and influences:Levertov was born and grew up in Ilford, Essex.Couzyn, Jeni Contemporary Women Poets. Bloodaxe, p74 Her mother, Beatrice Spooner-Jones Levertoff, came from a small mining village in North Wales...

, Galway Kinnell
Galway Kinnell
Galway Kinnell is an American poet. He was Poet Laureate of Vermont from 1989 to 1993. An admitted follower of Walt Whitman, Kinnell rejects the idea of seeking fulfillment by escaping into the imaginary world. His best-loved and most anthologized poems are "St...

, people like that. I don't know - Robert Kelly (poet)
Robert Kelly (poet)
Robert Kelly is an American poet associated with the deep image group.-Early life and education:Kelly was born in Brooklyn, New York, to Samuel Jason and Margaret Rose Kelly née Kane, in 1935. He did his undergraduate studies at the City College of the City University of New York, graduating in 1955...

 just seemed a different kind of poet. Mysterious, in a way. He was interested in the occult, in gnosticism and abstract art - things that had a particular appeal to me." According to Rohrer, Yau's decision to attend Bard College was motivated by his admiration of Kelly.

Yau's most recent books are Exhibits (Letter Machine Editions, 2010), A Thing Among Things: The Art of Jasper Johns (D.A.P., 2009), and The Passionate Spectator: Essays on Art and Poetry (University of Michigan Press, 2006). His collections of poetry include Paradiso Diaspora (Penguin, 2006), Ing Grish, with Paintings by Thomas Nozkowski (Saturnalia, 2005),Borrowed Love Poems (Penguin, 2002), Forbidden Entries (Black Sparrow, 1996), Berlin Diptychon with Photographs by Bill Barrette (Timken, 1995), Edificio Sayonara (Black Sparrow, 1992),Corpse and Mirror (Holt & Rinehardt, 1983), a National Poetry Series
National Poetry Series
The National Poetry Series is an American literary awards program.Every year since 1979 it has sponsored the publication of five books of poetry...

 book selected by John Ashbery
John Ashbery
John Lawrence Ashbery is an American poet. He has published more than twenty volumes of poetry and won nearly every major American award for poetry, including a Pulitzer Prize in 1976 for his collection Self-Portrait in a Convex Mirror. But Ashbery's work still proves controversial...

, and Broken Off by The Music (Burning Deck, 1981). Artists' books include projects with Squeak Carnwath, Richard Tuttle, Norbert Prangenberg, Hanns Schimannsky, Archie Rand, Norman Bluhm, Pat Steir, Suzanne McClelland, Robert Therrien, Leiko Ikemura, and Jürgen Partenheimer
Jürgen Partenheimer
Jürgen Partenheimer is among the most renowned German artists of his generation. Since his participation at the Paris Biennial in 1980 and the Venice Biennial in 1986, his work has been widely shown internationally.-Work:...

 (a.o.), his books of art criticism include The United States of Jasper Johns
Jasper Johns
Jasper Johns, Jr. is an American contemporary artist who works primarily in painting and printmaking.-Life:Born in Augusta, Georgia, Jasper Johns spent his early life in Allendale, South Carolina with his paternal grandparents after his parents' marriage failed...

(1996) and In the Realm of Appearances: The Art of Andy Warhol
Andy Warhol
Andrew Warhola , known as Andy Warhol, was an American painter, printmaker, and filmmaker who was a leading figure in the visual art movement known as pop art...

(1993). He has also edited Fetish (1998), a fiction anthology.

He has been the Arts editor of The Brooklyn Rail
The Brooklyn Rail
The Brooklyn Rail is a political, artistic and literary magazine based in Greenpoint, Brooklyn. Coverage includes political andliterary essays, art criticism, interviews, original fiction and poetry, and reviews....

since March 2004. (See http://www.brooklynrail.org). He currently teaches art criticism at Mason Gross School of the Arts
Mason Gross School of the Arts
Mason Gross School of the Arts is the arts conservatory at Rutgers University in New Brunswick, New Jersey. It is named for Mason W. Gross, the sixteenth president of Rutgers...

, Rutgers University
Rutgers University
Rutgers, The State University of New Jersey , is the largest institution for higher education in New Jersey, United States. It was originally chartered as Queen's College in 1766. It is the eighth-oldest college in the United States and one of the nine Colonial colleges founded before the American...

.

Awards


Yau has received awards and grants from Creative Capital/Warhol Foundation, the Academy of American Poets
Academy of American Poets
The Academy of American Poets is a non-profit organization dedicated to the art of poetry. The Academy was incorporated as a "membership corporation" in New York State in 1934...

 (Lavan Award), The American Poetry Review
The American Poetry Review
The American Poetry Review is an American poetry magazine printed every other month on tabloid-sized newsprint.Founded in 1972 by Stephen Berg, APR has always been published from editorial offices in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. Berg is one of three editors, along with David Bonanno and Elizabeth...

 (Jerome Shestack Award), the National Endowment for the Arts
National Endowment for the Arts
The National Endowment for the Arts is an independent agency of the United States federal government that offers support and funding for projects exhibiting artistic excellence. It was created by an act of the U.S. Congress in 1965 as an independent agency of the federal government. Its current...

, the New York Foundation for the Arts
New York Foundation for the Arts
The New York Foundation for the Arts was created in conjunction the in 1971. The organization gives grants to individual artists and writers and developing arts organizations with a mission to '.'-NYFA's Programs:...

, the General Electric Foundation, the John Simon Guggenheim Memorial Foundation
John Simon Guggenheim Memorial Foundation
The John Simon Guggenheim Memorial Foundation was founded in 1925 by Mr. and Mrs. Simon Guggenheim in memory of their son, who died April 26, 1922...

, and the Foundation for Contemporary Arts
Foundation for Contemporary Arts
Foundation for Contemporary Arts , originally known as Foundation for Contemporary Performance Arts, is a nonprofit based foundation in New York City founded by artists Jasper Johns , John Cage, Elaine de Kooning and others in 1963. FCA offers financial support and recognition to contemporary...

.

Selected bibliography

  • 1983 – Corpse and Mirror (Poems)
  • 1989 - Radiant Silhouette: Selected Writing 1974-1988 (Poems and Prose)
  • 1992 – Edificio Sayonara (Poems)
  • 1993 – In the Realm of Appearances: The Art of Andy Warhol
    Andy Warhol
    Andrew Warhola , known as Andy Warhol, was an American painter, printmaker, and filmmaker who was a leading figure in the visual art movement known as pop art...

     (Critique)
  • 1995 – Berlin Diptychon (Poems)
  • 1995 – Hawaiian Cowboys (Short Stories)
  • 1996 – Forbidden Entries (Poems)
  • 1996 – The United States of Jasper Johns
    Jasper Johns
    Jasper Johns, Jr. is an American contemporary artist who works primarily in painting and printmaking.-Life:Born in Augusta, Georgia, Jasper Johns spent his early life in Allendale, South Carolina with his paternal grandparents after his parents' marriage failed...

     (Critique)
  • 1998 – Fetish (Editor)
  • 1998 – My Symptoms (Short Stories)
  • 1999 – In Company: Robert Creeley's Collaborations ( Essay of Yau)
  • 2002 – Borrowed Love Poems (Poems)
  • 2005 - Ing Grish
  • 2006 - Paradiso Diaspora
  • 2006 – "andalusia" Authors: John Yau (Poems), Leiko Ikemura
    Leiko Ikemura
    is a Japanese-Swiss painter and sculptor.-Biography:Leiko Ikemura left her country to study in Spain from 1973 to 1978 at the Academia de Bellas Artes in Granada and Seville. In 1979, Ikemura moved to Zurich to live and worked there for 4 years. The first of her mature paintings developed around 1980...

    , Verlag: Weidle Verlag, ISBN 3931135969
  • 2008 - A Thing Among Things: The Art of Jasper Johns, Distributed Art Publishers, ISBN 1933045620'
  • 2010 - Exhibits (Poem)

Critical studies

  1. The Language of Ethnicity: John Yau's Poetry and the Ethnic/Aesthetic Divide By: Mar, Christine. pp. 70–85 IN: Davis and Lee, Literary Gestures: The Aesthetic in Asian American Writing. Philadelphia, PA: Temple UP; 2006. (book article)
  2. The Object of Experiment: Figurations of Subjectivity in Asian American Experimental Literature By: Liu, Warren Tswun-Hwa; Dissertation Abstracts International, Section A: The Humanities and Social Sciences, 2005 Aug; 66 (2): 594. U of California, Berkeley, 2004. (dissertation abstract)
  3. John Yau By: Birns, Nicholas. pp. 348–58 IN: Madsen, Asian American Writers. Detroit, MI: Gale; 2005. (book article)
  4. Two Hat Softeners 'In the Trade Confession': John Yau and Kimiko Hahn
    Kimiko Hahn
    Kimiko Hahn is an American poet and instructor of poetry.-Personal:Hahn received a bachelor's degree from the University of Iowa and an M.A...

     By: Zhou, Xiaojing. pp. 168–89 IN: Zhou and Najmi, Form and Transformation in Asian American Literature. Seattle, WA: U of Washington P; 2005. (book article)
  5. John Yau By: Rohrer, Matthew. pp. 177–98 IN: Henry and Zawacki, The VERSE Book of Interviews: 27 Poets on Language, Craft, and Culture. Amherst, MA: Verse; 2005. (book article)
  6. Postmodernism and Subversive Parody: John Yau's 'Genghis Chan: Private Eye' Series By: Zhou, Xiaojing; College Literature, 2004 Winter; 31 (1): 73-102. (journal article)
  7. Pidginizing Chinese By: Huang, Yunte. pp. 205–20 IN: Sommer, Bilingual Games: Some Literary Investigations. New York, NY: Palgrave Macmillan; 2003. (book article)
  8. Undercover Asian: John Yau and the Politics of Ethnic Self-Identification By: Wang, Dorothy J.. pp. 135–55 IN: Davis and Ludwig, Asian American Literature in the International Context: Readings on Fiction, Poetry, and Performance. Hamburg, Germany: Lit; 2002. (book article)
  9. Remarkable Modernisms: Contemporary American Authors on Modern Art By: Morris, Daniel. Amherst, MA: U of Massachusetts P; 2002. (book)
  10. John Yau By: Caples, Garrett. pp. 305–15 IN: Meanor and Lee, American Short-Story Writers since World War II: Third Series. Detroit, MI: Gale; 2001. (book article)
  11. Strangers and Oneself: John Yau's Writings on Contemporary Art By: Morris, Daniel; Talisman: A Journal of Contemporary Poetry and Poetics, 2001 Winter-Spring; 21-22: 45-57. (journal article)
  12. Form and Identity in Language Poetry and Asian American Poetry By: Yu, Timothy; Contemporary Literature, 2000 Spring; 41 (3): 422-61. (journal article)
  13. Necessary Figures: Metaphor, Irony and Parody in the Poetry of Li-Young Lee
    Li-Young Lee
    Li-Young Lee is an American poet. He was born in Jakarta, Indonesia, to Chinese parents. His maternal grandfather was Yuan Shikai, China's first Republican President, who attempted to make himself emperor...

    , Marilyn Chin
    Marilyn Chin
    Marilyn Chin is an American poet who grew up in Portland, Oregon, after her family immigrated from Hong Kong. She received an M.F.A. from the University of Iowa. Her awards include two National Endowment for the Arts grants, the Stegner Fellowship, the PEN Oakland/Josephine Miles Literary Award,...

    , and John Yau
    By: Wang, Dorothy Joan; Dissertation Abstracts International, Section A: The Humanities and Social Sciences, 1999 Sept; 60 (3): 747. U of California, Berkeley, 1998. (dissertation abstract)
  14. Word and Flesh: Materiality, Violence and Asian-American Poetics By: Chang, Juliana Chu; Dissertation Abstracts International, 1996 Mar; 56 (9): 3579A. U of California, Berkeley, 1995. (dissertation abstract)
  15. A Bughouse Interaction By: Peterson, Eric; Bughouse, 1994 Summer; 2: 47-59. (journal article)
  16. John Yau and the Seductions of Everything That Used to Be By: Foster, Edward Halsey; MultiCultural Review, 1994 Mar; 3 (1): 36-39. (journal article)
  17. 'Chaos Goes Uncourted': John Yau's Dis(-)Orienting Poetics By: Wald, Priscilla. pp. 133–58 IN: Colatrella and Alkana, Cohension and Dissent in America. Albany: State U of New York P; 1994. (book article)

Talisman on Yau


The Fall 1990 (vol. 5) issue of Talisman: A Journal of Contemporary Poetry and Poetics featured several articles on Yau:
  1. An Interview with John Yau By: Foster, Edward; 31-50.
  2. John Yau By: Foster, Edward (ed.); 31-50, 113-151.
  3. On John Yau By: Chaloner, David; 113-114.
  4. On John Yau By: Corbett, William; 114-115.
  5. On John Yau By: Hemensley, Kris; 116-118.
  6. Harmonic Interferences: A Note on John Yau By: Donahue, Joseph; 118-119.
  7. The Dream Science of John Yau's 'Dragon's Blood' By: Mobilio, Albert; 119-120.
  8. Guilt by Dissociation: John Yau's Poetics of Possibility By: Wald, Priscilla; 121-125.
  9. 'Pieces of a Piece' By: Campbell, Bruce; 126-134.
  10. John Yau: A Selected Bibliography By: Foster, Edward; 147-151.

External links