Houston is indeed an international city. Likewise, it’s a creative hub for both local and visiting artists. Soon, writers from around the world will unite in the Bayou City for an insightful evening of prose and poetry.
On Jan. 22, University of Houston literary journal Gulf Coast will present “Transnation/Translation,” an evening of readings featuring works from UH’s Creative Writing Program students and guests Kim Kyung Ju and Jake Levine. The event kicks off at 7 p.m. at Asia Society Texas (1370 Southmore Blvd.). Admission is free.
Ju is among Korea’s most popular poets. His collection of poems “I Am A Season That Does Not Exist In The World” sold more than 20,000 copies. Additionally, he has composed books of poetry, essays and translations. His poetic dramas have been performed in Seoul and New York. Ju also has curated art exhibitions and has contributed to interdisciplinary projects with artists from other disciplines – including a hip-hop project “Poetic Justice” with Korean rapper MC Meta.
A native of Tuscon, Ariz., Levine is currently pursuing a Ph.D. in comparative literature from Seoul National University. He’s an editor at Spork Press and has authored two chapbooks, “The Threshold of Erasure” and “Vilna Dybbuk.”
Henk Rossouw, a doctoral candidate in UH’s Creative Writing Program and poetry editor for Gulf Coast, also will share works during “Transnation/Translation.” A native of Cape Town, South Africa, he has contributed poetry to The Paris Review and The Boston Review. Rossouw’s non-fiction work has been published in The Threepenny Review, and he’s had fiction appear in Tin House. Rossouw has taught undergraduate courses at UH and the University of Massachusetts Amherst. He also has taught high school students at Amherst College and in Prague.
The event also will feature readings by Gulf Coast editor and Ukraine transplant Luisa Muradyan Tannahill. A doctoral candidate in UH’s Creative Writing Program, Tannahill’s work has appeared in Blackbird, West Branch, Ninth Letter, Mudlark and PANK among other journals.
“Transnation/Translation” is part of Gulf Coast’s popular reading series, which spotlights UH writers, as well as guest authors and poets. During 2016, readings will alternate between Brazos Bookstore and Rudyard’s British Pub.
This year, Gulf Coast, A Journal of Literature and Art, celebrates its 30th anniversary. Founded in 1986 by Donald Barthelme and Philip Lopate, Gulf Coast spotlights the literary and visual arts communities. The journal is a partnership between CWP, the Museum of Fine Arts-Houston and the Menil Collection. It reviews submissions from artists and writers from around the country. To learn more about the Gulf Coast journal and the reading series, visit www.gulfcoastmag.org.