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May 3, 2018

Mason Gross School of the Arts Professor John Yau Wins Jackson Poetry Prize

NEW YORK—John Yau, poet, art critic, and professor of critical studies at the Mason Gross School of the Arts at Rutgers University, has won the 2018 Jackson Poetry Prize. The prize grants $60,000 to provide time and support to poets in the creation of works of poetry. The prize has been awarded annually since 2007 by Poets & Writers, the largest nonprofit organization in the United States dedicated to serving the needs of creative writers, to an exceptional American poet deserving of wider recognition. Recent recipients include Patricia Spears Jones, Will Alexander, and X.J. Kennedy.

Judges Laura Kasischke, Robin Coste Lewis, and Arthur Sze selected Yau for his ability to compose “expansive variations, in series, that simultaneously widen, deepen, and complicate the scope of a poem. Visual art, film, and surrealism are rivers in his work, yet it is Yau’s dazzling imagination and singular command of language that create unforgettable poems.”

Yau is the author of thirteen books of poetry and, as an art critic, has published monographs on artists including Jasper Johns, Catherine Murphy, Thomas Nozkowski, Philip Taaffe, and William Blake. His writing has appeared inArtforum, Art in America, Bookforum,Artnews, and the Los Angeles Times, and he served as arts editor of the Brooklyn Railfrom 2006 to 2011. He has received awards and fellowships from the National Endowment for the Arts, the Foundation for Contemporary Art, and the Academy of American Poets, among others, and the Distinguished Alumni Award from Brooklyn College and an honorary doctorate from the College of Creative Studies.

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