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Art in the Library
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September 2005

September 2005


February 2006


February 2006

May 2006


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February 2008


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February 2008

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February 2008


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September 2008


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September 2008

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September 2008


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September 2008


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November 2008

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November 2008


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November 2008


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November 2008

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November 2008



Kristy Bowen

This project, in particular, offers a visual representation of text, freeing it from the page, undoing stanza form, loosening its lines. I was intrigued by the idea of free-flowing text--the interaction between poetry as language and as a piece of visual art. Utilizing traditional free-verse, my work, in general, typically explores myth, history, and archetype, grounding itself in everyday, predominantly female, experience. Some of my influences include Emily Dickinson, Sylvia Plath, W.B. Yeats, Anne Sexton, and T.S. Eliot, whose essay "Tradition and the Individual Talent: is my poetic bible. My work has appeared in a number of small press print and online journals, including After Hours, Verse Libre Quarterly, Stirring, and Blue Fifth Review. My chapbook, The Archaeologist's Daughter, is forthcoming next spring from Moon Journal Press. Last April, I was awarded 3rd Place in The Poetry Center of Chicago's Eighth Annual Juried Reading Competition, and was a previous winner of the Korone/Womanspace Poetry Contest and The College Poetry Prize sponsored by the Academy of American Poets. After studying English and Theatre as an undergraduate at Rockford College, I earned an M.A. in English Lit from DePaul University, with a focus on women authors and feminist criticism. In addition to my day job in the Circulation Department of the library, which is actually more like a night job, I also edit the online literary journal Wicked Alice, which can be accessed, along with my personal web site, at: http://www.angelfire.com/poetry/wickedpen



Second Statement

Lately, I've been thinking about poetic process, fragmentation, and collage - how my own poems coalesce - from word to phrase, image to poem. The text of this piece is culled mostly from pieces in my manuscript-in-progress, Destination. I began by transcribing random lines, images, and words to form an entirely new text. The medium, tea-washed muslin, reflects a certain ephemeral quality - something lilting and feminine, ethereal and haunting...

My work has appeared in over 30 small press print and online journals over the past few years. In the spring, a poem that appeared in Moon Journal was nominated for an Illinois Arts Council Literary Award. My manuscript, Bloody Mary, earned Honorable Mention in the Sarasota Poetry Theatre's EDDA competition for 2003. Recently, I received a Pushcart nomination for "After the Flood", a poem that appeared in Stirring and was featured as part of last spring's Art of the Library Series. The Archaeologist's Daughter, a chapbook collection of earlier work, is due out early next year from Moon Journal Press. This fall, I began courses in the MFA in Poetry program here at Columbia.


Third Statement (April 2004)


The poetic fragments in this installation are taken from a mammoth hypertext project in progress titled generalities, a series of pieces finding their roots and organization in the dewey decimal system. (Yes, I have been working in the library too long.) Each classification contains its own universe and yet comes together to form a cohesive whole. More of my work may be seen at www.angelfire.com/poetry/wickedpen


Fourth Statement (October 2004)

This series of collages, formed from scraps of poetry manuscripts and drafts, images, and textured papers, take their inspiration largely from the work of surrealist Joseph Cornell. I find that working in a predominantly visual form forces me to look at my written work in new ways.


Fifth Statement (March 2005)

These collages are purely visual musings created conjunction with a Victorian-inspired series of poems I recently completed titled errata. My current project, an altered book/collage/poetry piece, The Book of Red, will appear in the "Secret Place, Sacred Space" show at WomanMade Gallery in April. As for written work, several poems are forthcoming in Another Chicago Magazine, Slipstream, and Spoon River Poetry Review. My most recent chapbook, belladonna, is available from my website: www.angelfire.com/poetry/wickedpen



Sixth Statement (September 2005)

These collages were created in conjunction with a series of carnivalesque poems titled girl show, which themselves were inspired by AW Stencell's book Girl Show: Into the Canvas World of Bump and Grind. The overall project seeks to explore the lines between beauty and the grotesque, particularly as it relates to the female form and male gaze.


Seventh Statement (February 2006)

Kristy Bowen occasionally hates poetry and wants to be a collage/book artist. (or an interior designer) Nevertheless, her work has appeared in publications like Cranky, Another Chicago Magazine, and Slipstream. She also edits the online literary zine, wicked alice, and runs dancing girl press, which publishes work by women authors. She's the author of several handmade and small press chapbooks which may be obtained at her website (www.kristybowen.net) Her full-length book, the fever almanac, is forthcoming from Ghost Road Press in November 2006.


Eighth Statement (September 2008)

A poet and visual artist, Kristy Bowen runs dancing girl press & studio, which publishes a chapbook series for women poets, produces the online zine wicked alice, and hosts a series of salons and workshops devoted to poetics and publishing. The studio's online shop, dulcet features a variety of books, art, and paper goods, as well as a selection of vintage finds, random fancies, and bookish accessories. Bowen is the author of the fever almanac (Ghost Road Press, 2006) as well as several chapbooks, including feign (NMP, 2007) and at the hotel andromeda, a collaborative book arts project inspired by Joseph Cornell. Her second collection, in the bird museum is forthcoming from Dusie Books this summer. Another, girl show, will be published by Ghost Road Press in 2009.


Ninth Statement (November 2008)

In an age of both attempted and successful book banning in communities and public schools, this project explores how obscuration hints at illicitness. Is what we see as important as what we DON'T see? Is our experience of the piece and our response determined by what is actually there or what we might imagine?