Saturday, September 20, 2008


Artifact presents...

Kathleen FRASER

Saturday, October 25, 2008
7PM Doors/7:30 Reading*** (note new time!)

@ Oakland Art Gallery
Frank Ogawa Plaza
199 Kahn's Alley
Oakland Ca 94612

$5 suggested donation


Kathleen Fraser has published eighteen books of poems, most recently W I T N E S S (2007, Chax); Discrete Categories Forced Into Coupling (2004, Apogee), and the collaged work hi dde violeth i dde violet (2004, Nomados). Her collected essays, Translating the Unspeakable, Poetry and the Innovative Necessity (2000), are part of the Contemporary Poetics Series. U. of Alabama Press. Her il cuore : the heart, Selected Poems, 1970-1995, is available from Wesleyan University Press. Fraser has collaborated on artist books with Sam Francis, Mary Ann Hayden, David Marshall and Nancy Tokar Miller. Twenty wall pieces from ii ss, a collaboration-in-progress with NY painter Hermine Ford, were recently shown at the Pratt Institute of Architecture in Rome and a capsule version of this show will open at Melville House, in the Dumbo gallery area of Brooklyn, on Nov. 6.


In 1973, Fraser founded The American Poetry Archive, during her tenure as Director of The Poetry Center at San Francisco State University. Between 1983 and 1992, she published and edited HOW(ever), a journal for poets and scholars interested in modernist/ innovative directions in writing by 20th century women—up-dated to the current electronic journal How2 @


Fraser is winner of a Guggenheim and two N.E.A. Fellowships in Poetry, and the Frank O’Hara Award for innovative achievement. She currently teaches in the graduate writing program at California College of the Arts/SF and lives for the spring months of each year in Italy, lecturing widely on American poetry and translating Italian poets.

Katy Lederer is the author of the poetry collections, Winter Sex (Verse Press, 2002) and The Heaven-Sent Leaf (BOA Editions, 2008) as well as the memoir Poker Face: A Girlhood Among Gamblers (Crown, 2003), which Publishers Weekly included on its list of the Best Nonfiction Books of 2003 and Esquire Magazine named one of its eight Best Books of the Year 2003.

Her poems and prose have appeared in The American Poetry Review, Boston Review, The Paris Review, GQ, and elsewhere. She has been anthologized in Body Electric (Norton), From Poe to the Present: Great American Prose Poems (Scribner), and Isn't It Romantic? (Verse Press) among other compilations.

Educated at the University of California at Berkeley and the Iowa Writers' Workshop, she serves as a Poetry Editor of Fence Magazine. Her honors and awards include an Academy of American Poets Prize, fellowships from Yaddo (2001; 2004; 2005), MacDowell (2007), and the New York Foundation for the Arts (2005-2006), and a Discover Great New Writers citation from Barnes & Noble's Discover Great New Writers Program.

Will Skinker
's work has appeared in Weigh Station, Mirage/Periodical, Shuffle Boil, Ellipsis, word for/word, digital artifact, and The Denver Quarterly; his poems have been in The Night Palace and Morning Train from Auguste Press, which has also recently published his book Mascara.

He grew up in the mountains of Virginia and moved to Oregon, then California in 2000. He lives in San Francisco with his fiancee Yolanda and their two cats, Tootie and Pablo.

a new class for you


Poets Laura Moriarty and Brent Cunningham will be teaching a weekly evening class for writers and poetry readers starting October 7th. Together they taught a popular "Martian Poetics" class in the Spring. The new class, "Realisms of the Everyday," will take place Tuesday evenings at Small Press Distribution in northwest Berkeley. New students especially welcome!

For questions, contact Information and sign-up for the class can be found here:

CLASS DESCRIPTION: A great deal of poetic invention has found its way forward by revaluing or returning to the “real”: the ordinary, the everyday, the mundane, the colloquial, the immediate, the tangible. In this class we will explore the problems and potentials of the real from the perspective of working writers. We will take a look at actuality and everydayness as aesthetic tactics, aesthetic forms, and aesthetic inspirations. We will notice our existence in what we think of as everyday life and note how others have solved the problem of both occupying and representing this “life.” We will focus especially on the difficult problem of defining the “real”: is it what we continuously think, what we immediately perceive, what we actually do, what lasts, what would exist without us, or something else? Is it all of these things? Is it some specific (secret, discoverable?) combination? And, practically speaking, what does it mean to one’s writing to value certain ideas of reality over others? We will often write during class. We will do exercises that use “what is” as their generative engine. In place of in-class workshopping, each student will receive a 30-minute individual consultation with one of the instructors outside of class hours. For interested students there are additional opportunities for one-on-one meetings outside of class at (cheap) hourly rates. There will be opportunities to browse the thousands of small press titles at SPD. And there will be a 30% discount on all SPD books for all students of this class! Throughout, we will attempt to complicate our presumptions about what really is, while also recognizing the undeniable power and vitality of is-ness.

LAURA MORIARTY'S A Semblance: Selected & New Poetry 1975-2007 is just out from Omnidawn Publishing. Other recent books are Ultravioleta, a novel, from Atelos and Self-Destruction, a book of poetry, from Post-Apollo Press. She has taught at Mills College and Naropa University among other places & is currently Deputy Director of Small Press Distribution. She received a Poetry Center Book Award in 1984 for Persia. She has also been awarded a Gerbode Foundation grant, a residency at the Foundation Royaumont in France, a New Langton Arts Award in Literature and a grant from the Fund for Poetry.

BRENT CUNNINGHAM is a writer, publisher and visual artist currently living in Oakland with his fiancee and new daughter. His first book of poetry, Bird & Forest, was published by Ugly Duckling Presse in 2005. After receiving his MA in English from SUNY Buffalo in 1998, he began working for Small Press Distribution (SPD) in Berkeley, the nation's only not-for-profit distributor of literary books. He currently holds the position of Operations director. A board member of Small Press Traffic since 2001, he was a founding curator of SPT's "Poets Theater Jamboree," an annual ritual of amateur experimental theater. In 2005 he and Neil Alger founded Hooke Press, a chapbook press dedicated to publishing short runs of poetry, criticism, theory, writing and ephemera. Hooke has published four titles so far, with two more on the way.