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Stetson University MFA of the Americas: January 2019 Readings

January 2, 2019 - January 9, 2019

Join us for readings, talks, and performances by distinguished artists and writers, including our third graduating cohort. All readings are free and open to the public

Schedule of Readings/Public Lectures:

Wednesday, January 2, |8:00-9:00 pm| MFA Graduating Students: Nikki Barnes, Savannah Kater, Pablo Vindel, and Wendy Wakeman

Thursday, January 3, |8:00-9:00 pm| Cyriaco Lopes & Terri Witek / Patty Yumi Cottrell

Friday, January 4, |8:00-9:00 pm| Sergio Vega

Saturday, January 5, |8:00-9:00 pm| Samuel R. Delany

Sunday, January 6, |8:00-9:00 pm| Teresa Carmody / Veronica Gonzelez Peña / Urayoán Noel

Monday, January 7, |8:00-9:00 pm| Latasha N. Nevada Diggs

Tuesday, January 8, |8:00-9:00 pm|  Jena Osman / Poupeh Missaghi

Wednesday, January 9, |8:00-9:00 pm| Pola Oloixarac

About MFA faculty and visiting artists/writers:


Terri Witek is the author of six books of poems, most recently The Rape Kit, selected by Dawn Lundy Martin as the Slope Editions Book Prize. Witek’s poetry often traces the breakages between words and images: she has collaborated with Brazilian visual artist Cyriaco Lopes since 2005. Their works together include gallery shows, video, performance and site-specific projects– featured internationally in New York, Seoul, Miami, Lisbon, and Rio de Janeiro. Collaborations with digital artist Matt Roberts use augmented reality technology for smart phones to poetically map cities and have been featured in Matanza (Colombia), Lisbon, Glasgow, Vancouver, and Miami. With Lopes she team-teaches Poetry in the Expanded Field in Stetson University’s low-residency MFA of the Americas, and also Stetson’s undergraduate creative writing program.

Cyriaco Lopes has exhibited at the Museum of Modern Art in Rio de Janeiro, the Museum of Art of São Paulo (MASP), El Museo del Barrio in NYC, the Centre Wallonie Bruxelles in Paris, Casa Degli Artisti in Milan, among many other international venues. He is the winner of the NYC World Studio Foundation Award and the Contemporary Art Museum Saint Louis Project Award, among others. He regularly collaborates with poet Terri Witek; their most recent solo show was at Oi Futuro Center for Art & Technology in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.

Patty Yumi Cottrell is often described as a writer who “opens up fresh lines of questioning in the old interrogations of identity, the politics of belonging, and the problem of other minds.” Her work has appeared or is forthcoming in Guernica, BOMB, Gulf Coast, Black Warrior Review, and other places. Her debut novel, Sorry to Disrupt the Peace, received the 2018 Whiting Award in fiction. She was born in Korea, raised in Pittsburgh, Chicago, and Milwaukee, and currently lives in St. Petersburg, FL.


Sergio Vega attended the Whitney Museum of American Art Independent Study program and received an MFA in sculpture from Yale University in 1996. Vega’s work involves a range of media, including text, photographs, videos, sculpture, objects, dioramas, scale models and installations. His critical revision of the colonial baroque, romanticist and modernist periods discloses how these representations enacted Edenic fantasies about the New World and supported the colonialist conception of the Americas. His work has been exhibited in art galleries and museum in over thirty countries, and reviewed in Art in America, Flash Art, Artforum, Frieze, Camera Austria, Art Nexus, Bomb, The New York Times and more. He has participated in the Venice, Lyon, Gwangju, Yokohama, Johannesburg, Sharjah and Moscow Biennials. He has been full-time faculty at the University of Florida since 1999 and currently teaches in the photography and sculpture departments


Samuel R. Delany is an acclaimed novelist and critic who taught English and creative writing at Temple University. After winning four Nebula Awards and two Hugo Awards, he was inducted into the Science Fiction Hall of Fame in 2002. In 2013, Delany was named the 31st Damon Knight Memorial Foundation Grand Master by the Science Fiction and Fantasy Writers of America.  Read Articles in STETSON UNIVERSITY TODAY  and THE DAYTONA BEACH NEWS JOURNAL


Teresa Carmody is the author of Maison Femme: a fiction (2015) and Requiem (2005). Her work has appeared or is forthcoming in The Collagist, Two Serious Ladies, Diagram, St. Petersburg Review, Faultline, Entropy, and more. Carmody is co-founding editor of Les Figues Press and director of Stetson University’s MFA of the Americas.

Urayoán Noel was born and raised in San Juan, Puerto Rico, lives in the Bronx, and is an associate professor of English and Spanish at NYU. As a poet, Noel is the author of Buzzing Hemisphere/Rumor Hemisfe’rico (Arizona, 2015), a Library Journal Top Fall Indie Poetry selection; Hi-Density Politics (BlazeVox, 2010), a National Book Critics Circle Small Press Highlights selection; Kool Logic/La Lo’gica Kool (Bilingual Review, 2005), an El Nuevo Día Book of the Year; and several books mostly in Spanish, most recently the performance text EnUncIAdOr (Educacio’n Emergente, 2014). Noel has received fellowships from the Ford Foundation, the Howard Foundation, the Bronx Council on the Arts, and CantoMundo, and is currently completing a bilingual edition of the poems of Pablo de Rokha.

Veronica Gonzalez Peña is an artist, writer, and filmmaker. Her first novel, twin time: or how death befell me, was published by semiotext(e) and was awarded the 2008 Aztlan Literary Prize. Lynne Tillman calls her second novel, The Sad Passions (2013), “honest and riveting,” and Francisco Goldman hailed it “a beautiful and moving choral tale of isolation, love, damage, and intimate struggles.” Her latest film is Pat Steir: Artist—an inspired and beautiful film about a truly groundbreaking female artist.


A writer, vocalist and sound artist, LaTasha N. Nevada Diggs is the author of TwERK (Belladonna, 2013). Her interdisciplinary work has been featured at the Brooklyn Museum, the Poesiefestival in Berlin, Museum of Modern Art, the QOW conference in Slovakia, the International Poetry Festival in Bucharest, the Whitney Museum of American Art, the Walker Art Center, the 56th Venice Biennale, Beijing and more recently, Leeuwarden. As a curator and director, she has staged events at BAM Café, Lincoln Center Out of Doors, The David Rubenstein Atrium, The Highline, Poets House and El Museo del Barrio. LaTasha is the recipient of numerous awards; of them include New York Foundation for the Arts, Barbara Deming Memorial Grant, the National Endowment for the Arts, LMCC Workspace AIR, the Jerome Foundation Travel and Study Grant, the Japan-US Friendship Commission, Creative Capital and the Whiting Foundation Literary Award. She lives in Harlem.


Jena Osman’s books of poems include Corporate Relations (Burning Deck, 2014), Public Figures (Wesleyan University Press, 2012), The Network (Fence Books 2010, selected for the National Poetry Series in 2009), An Essay in Asterisks (Roof Books, 2004) and The Character (Beacon Press, winner of the 1998 Barnard New Women Poets Prize). Her book Motion Studies is forthcoming from Ugly Duckling Press in March 2019. She co-edited the literary magazine Chain and Chain Links Books with Juliana Spahr.

Poupeh Missaghi is a writer, educator, English < > Persian translator, and Iran’s editor-at-large for Asymptote. She holds a Ph.D. in Creative Writing from the University of Denver, an M.A. in Creative Writing from Johns Hopkins University, and an M.A. in Translation Studies. Her writings (fiction and nonfiction) and translations have appeared in numerous journals, and she has several books of translation (from English into Persian) published in Iran. Her first book house one, a trans(re)lation is upcoming from Coffee House Press in the Fall of 2019. She currently teaches as a visiting assistant professor at the Creative Writing Program of Pratt Institute, Brooklyn.


Pola Olaxariac is a fiction writer and essayist. Her novels, Savage Theories and Dark Constellations, have been translated into seven languages. Her writing has appeared in n+1, the White Review, the New York Times, and Granta, which named her one of its Best Young Spanish Language Novelists. She wrote the libretto for the opera Hercules in Mato Grosso, which debuted at Buenos Aires’s Teatro Colón and had its North American premiere at New York City’s Dixon Place. She lives in San Francisco.

About The MFA of the Americas

The MFA of the Americas is a two-year, low-residency studio program in creative writing with degrees in Prose and Poetry in the Expanded Field. Designed to fit into your already full lives, the program allows learning and life to coordinate, consolidate and coalesce around the reading and writing that informs and reforms your work. We gather twice annually for ten days of workshops, readings and craft talks in an energizing community of writers. These residencies rotate between the Atlantic Center for the Arts in New Smyrna Beach, Florida, and various international locations in the Americas. Between residencies, students exchange original work with a faculty mentor; the program culminates in a student’s final project, reading, and craft talk.

Our program embraces all of the Americas, geographically and culturally, encouraging you to grow as a writer and global citizen. You are admitted to the program primarily on the strength of your application work sample.   Learn More


January 2, 2019
January 9, 2019
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