Thursday, May 21, 2009

Artist Statement

I am trying to write an Artist Statement for something I'm applying to and I'm really having difficulty with it.

What they want--

An intro text that provides background for my work.

Why is this so hard? They are very open, yet I'm struggling.

Any ideas or suggestions? Any good examples?


  1. You didn't happen to say how long the statement needs to be, though for this kind of thing I'm guessing a page at most.

    I find it difficult to talk in any way objectively about my own poems -- I don't much feel able to say anything about what my poems accomplish, or what qualities they exhibit.

    So usually (for statements of this kind) I talk about my intentions, my ideas of what poetry is, maybe a little about the poetry and other forces that have shaped my ideas about writing.

  2. I'll agree with Lyle on this one: I had to write a similar statement for a writers' conference last summer. I tried to lay out my intentions, how I conceived of my poetry, and my ideas about how poetry happens.

    You also might consider laying your work alongside some of your favorite poets. This way, you can compare and contrast. Doing so helped me.

  3. thanks, Jeff! I'll try this.

  4. It is sooo much easier having someone else help you with this kind of task. Kind of like swapping back massages.

    I'd be happy to take a look at your statement---email me if you need an extra set of eyes!


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