On Wednesday, April 19, poet John Ashbery and screenwriter and director Jim Jarmusch will read from their work as part of the Althea Ward Clark W’21 Reading Series, presented by the Lewis Center for the Arts’ Program in Creative Writing at Princeton University. The reading, beginning at 4:30 p.m. in McCosh Hall, Room 50, on the Princeton campus, is free and open to the public. Ashbery will be appearing via Skype. (Note: this reading is not being held in the usual venue at the Berlind Theatre at McCarter Theatre Center.)

john ashbery

Poet John Ashbery. Photo by Lynn Davis.

John Ashbery’s work has won numerous awards and has been translated into 25 languages. His most recent book of poetry, Commotion of the Birds, was published in November 2016. Other collections include Breezeway (2015); Quick Question (2012); Planisphere (2009); and Notes from the Air: Selected Later Poems (2007), which was awarded the 2008 International Griffin Poetry Prize. His work Self-Portrait in a Convex Mirror (1975) won the Pulitzer Prize, the National Book Award, and the National Book Critics Circle Award, and an early book, Some Trees (1956), was selected by W.H. Auden for the Yale Younger Poets Series. He was a chancellor of the Academy of American Poets from 1988 to 1999. In addition, the Library of America published the first volume of his collected poems in 2008, and a two-volume set of his collected translations from the French (poetry and prose) was published in 2014. The winner of many prizes and awards, both nationally and internationally, he has received two Guggenheim Fellowships and was a MacArthur Fellow from 1985 to 1990. Recently, he received the Medal for Distinguished Contribution to American Letters from the National Book Foundation (2011) and a National Humanities Medal, presented by President Obama at the White House (2012). He lives in New York and exhibits his collages at the Tibor de Nagy Gallery. Ashbery holds degrees from Harvard and Columbia.

jim jarmusch

Screenwriter and director Jim Jarmusch. Photo by Sara Driver.

Jim Jarmusch is an American film director, screenwriter, actor, producer, editor, and composer. His works include Paterson (2016), Gimme Danger (2016), Only Lovers Left Alive (2013), The Limits of Control (2009), Broken Flowers (2005), Coffee and Cigarettes (2003), Ghost Dog: The Way of the Samurai (1999), Year of the Horse (1997), Dead Man (1995), Down by Law (1986), Night on Earth (1991), Mystery Train (1989), Stranger than Paradise (1984), Permanent Vacation (1980), and the short film Int. Trailer. Night. (2002). His honors include the Josef von Sternberg Award from the international film festival in Mannheim-Heidelberg and the Filmmaker on the Edge Award from the Provincetown International Film Festival. He has also won the Grand Prix of the 2005 Cannes Festival for Broken Flowers, and he was the 1999 laureate of the Douglas Sirk Preis at Filmfest Hamburg, Germany. Born in Akron, Ohio, Jarmusch lives and works in New York.

Both writers will be introduced by Pulitzer Prize-winning poet and member of Princeton’s Creative Writing faculty Paul Muldoon.

The Lewis Center’s Program in Creative Writing annually presents the Althea Ward Clark W’21 Reading Series, which provides an opportunity for students, as well as all in the greater Princeton region, to hear and meet the best writers of contemporary poetry and fiction. All readings are free and open to the public, and they take place on select Wednesdays at 4:30 p.m. in the Berlind Theatre at McCarter Theatre Center.

On May 3, the Program will present a reading of selected student work from spring semester writing seminars. On May 8 and 10, seniors in the Program will read from the novels, screenplays, or collections of short stories, poetry, or translations written for their senior theses under the mentorship of faculty advisors.