Forrest Gander

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Forrest Gander (born 1956) is an American poet, essayist, novelist, critic, and translator.

Born in the Mojave Desert, he grew up in Virginia and has degrees in geology, a subject referenced frequently in both his poems and essays, and English literature. He spent significant periods in San Francisco, California, Dolores Hidalgo, Mexico, and Eureka Springs, Arkansas, before moving to Providence, Rhode Island. A writer in multiple genres, Gander is noted for his collaborations with photographers such as Sally Mann and Graciela Iturbide and with the dancers Eiko & Koma. He is a United States Artists Rockefeller Fellow and the recipient of fellowships from the Library of Congress, the National Endowment for the Arts, the John Simon Guggenheim Foundation, The Whiting Foundation, and the Howard Foundation. He is the Adele Kellenberg Seaver Professor of Literary Arts and Comparative Literatures at Brown University in Rhode Island.

Writing and Translation[edit]

His poetry is lyrical and often complex rhythmically and structurally. Critic Karla Huston, writing in "Library Journal," notes that, "Owing to the poems' placement on the page and the near absence of punctuation, the reader is propelled through the verse, left with a sense of urgency and awe." Noting the frequency and particularity of Gander's references to ecology and landscape, Robert Hass, former U.S. Poet Laureate, calls him "a Southern poet of a relatively rare kind, a restlessly experimental writer." Gander's book Core Samples from the World was a finalist for 2012 Pulitzer Prize and the 2011 National Book Critics Circle Award. The Pulitzer citation notes that Core Samples from the World is "A compelling work that explores cross-cultural tensions in the world and digs deeply to identify what is essential in human experience."

The subjects of Gander's formally innovative essays range from snapping turtles to translation to literary hoaxes. His critical essays have appeared in The Nation, Boston Review, and The New York Times Book Review.

In 2008, New Directions published As a Friend, Gander's novel of a gifted man, a land surveyor, whose impact on those around him provokes an atmosphere of intense self-examination and eroticism. In The New York Times Book Review, Jeanette Winterson praised As a Friend as "a strange and beautiful novel.... haunting and haunted." It needs, she wrote, "to be read slowly, to be uncovered like a secret or discovered like a treasure." It has been published in translation in Bulgarian, Spanish, French, and German editions.

Gander is a translator with a particular interest in poetry from Spain, Latin America, and Japan. Besides editing two anthologies of Mexican poetry, Gander has translated discrete volumes by Mexican poets [1] Pura López Colomé, [2] Coral Bracho (PEN Translation Finalist for "Firefly Under the Tongue"), and [3] Alfonso D'Aquino. With Kyoko Yoshida, Gander translated Spectacle & Pigsty: Selected Poems of Kiwao Nomura (OmniDawn, 2011), winner of the 2012 Best Translated Book Award. The second book of his translations, with Kent Johnson, of Bolivian poet Jaime Saenz, The Night (Princeton, 2007), received a PEN Translation Award. Gander's critically acclaimed translations of the Chilean Nobel Laureate Pablo Neruda are included in The Essential Neruda: Selected Poems (City Lights, 2004).

Selected publications[edit]

Poetry Collections

Chapbooks

Novels

Collaborative Works

  • Redstart: An Ecological Poetics (University of Iowa Press, 2012)] collaboration with John Kinsella.
  • Twelve X 12:00 (Philip Elchers, 2003), collaboration with artist Tjibbe Hooghiemstra.
  • Sound of Summer Running (Nazraeli Press, 2005), collaboration with photographer Raymond Meeks.

Essay Collections

  • A Faithful Existence: Reading, Memory and Transcendence (Counterpoint, 2005).

In Translation

  • Como Amigo. Spanish translation of As a Friend. (Sexto Piso Editorial, Mexico City & Barcelona, 2013).
  • Ligaduras. A work of selected poems in Spanish translation. (Ventana Abierta Editorial, Santiago, Chile, 2011).
  • Als es dich gab. Roman. German translation of As a Friend. (Luxbooks, Wiesbaden, Germany, 2010).
  • Libreto para eros. A work of selected poems in Spanish translation. (Amargord, Madrid, 2010).
  • En Ami. French translation of As a Friend. (Sabine Wespieser Editeur, Paris, 2010).
  • Като приятел. Bulgarian translation of As a Friend. (Altera, Sofia, Bulgaria, 2010).

Translations

Anthologies Edited

Awards and honors[edit]

  • Pulitzer Prize Finalist, 2012
  • National Book Critics Circle Award Finalist, 2011
  • Library of Congress Witter Bynner Fellowship, 2011
  • United States Artists Rockefeller Fellowship, 2008
  • Guggenheim Foundation Fellowship, 2008
  • Howard Foundation Award, 2005
  • PEN Translation Fund Grant from PEN American Center, 2004
  • Pushcart Prize, 2000
  • Jessica Nobel Maxwell Memorial Prize (from American Poetry Review, 1998)
  • Whiting Writer’s Award, 1997
  • Gertrude Stein Award in Innovative North American Poetry (1997, 1993)
  • Fund for Poetry Award, 1994
  • National Endowment for the Arts Fellowship in poetry (1989, 2001)

External links[edit]