Steve Abbott: Poetry Responding to Visual Art

Thursday, January 9, 2020 - 7:00pm
Gramercy Books
2424 East Main Street
Bexley, OH 43209

Notable poet, Steve Abbott, will read from A Language the Image Speaks, a collection of poems responding to artworks from Ohio museums (Columbus Museum of Art, Dayton Art Institute, Cleveland Museum of Art) and other museums and galleries across the country. 
Columbus Museum of Art and Ohio Poetry Association are Community Partners for this program.

Using the approach of ekphrasis--poetry responding to visual art—this collection of 48 poems explores a range of responses to paintings, photographs, and sculpture. Poems appear opposite the images that inspired them, including high-quality color and black-and-white reproductions of works from museums, galleries, and private collections throughout the United States, including works by Edward Hopper, Andre Kertesz, Herbert Bayer, Louise Nevelson, Jerome Liebling, and Ben Shahn, as well as paintings and photographs by other artists from throughout the country. Poem and image inform each other, blending to create a unique literary and visual experience.

Abbott’s collection contains five images from the Columbus Museum of Art: Edward Hopper’s “Morning Sun”; Alexej Jawlensky’s "Schokko with Red Hat”; Ben Shann’s “Father Coughlin”; and Elijah Pierce’s “Pilgrim’s Progress” and “Elijah Escapes the Mob.”

Steve Abbott was a founding member in 1984 of The Poetry Forum, Ohio’s longest-running poetry series. His poems have appeared in dozens of literary journals and multiple anthologies, and he has edited two poetry anthologies and published five chapbooks of poems. He edits Ohio Poetry Association’s annual member journal Common Threads and represented OPA on the committee that selected Ohio’s first Poet Laureate.