This class will provoke participants to test the possibilities of writing that is informed by visual art. The first two classes will feature craft-lectures with a broad introduction to the intersections between visual art and literature. The four other classes will be generative, structured in three parts: close looking at art, in-class writing, and a feedback session.
The class is intended for writers of fiction and creative nonfiction who wish to use visual art to spur new or ongoing writing. The level of competence is not important, although it is essential that students have done some serious writing beforehand.
At the end of the six weeks, the students will have developed a loosely-structured narrative to build on for future work.
- Simple but targeted prompts that allow students to experiment with writing inspired by visual art
- Access to useful resources for developing further literary work inspired by art
- Students will develop the confidence to respond to art with speed and precision, even under the constraints of time
- Access to Catapult's list of writing opportunities and important submission deadlines, as well as a 10% discount on all future Catapult classes
Emmanuel Iduma is the author of A Stranger’s Pose, a book of travel stories, and The Sound of Things to Come, a novel. Born and raised in Nigeria, his stories and essays on art appear frequently in journals, magazines, artists’ books, and exhibition catalogues. He received a 2017 Creative Capital/Warhol Foundation grant in arts writing, and is a faculty member at the School of Visual Arts, New York.
"Emmanuel Iduma writes with lyricism and stunning clarity, a lush yet elegant style that resists categorization. He has an unusual sensitivity not only to image and the imagestic, but also to the slightest nuance of place, temperature, culture, and language."
"The writer is a traveler—not a refugee or migrant—but certainly a stranger, in condition, aspiring to the position and the pose. He is guileless, but carries a camera. His I is an other, as Rimbaud had it. At a time when more and more of us are strangers, at the mercy of others, it is perhaps time to delve into what that means, what it looks and sounds like, and what marvels appear. Iduma's book is a marvel."
"I dream about a book like a great ballad: full of years of living, which is another way of saying full of wisdom. The author doesn’t have to be old. The book doesn’t have to be big—better, in fact, that it be succinct, every page necessary, no wasteful flourishes. Dream of a perfect book, a ballad with all the lyrics remembered. The sleeper wakes from dreams. That book is in your hands."
"Emmanuel is an extremely intelligent and thoughtful instructor. He has taken the time to structure the course such that all students participate, even the typically silent students. I really appreciate his efforts in encouraging and facilitating student participation. His feedback on our writing is useful and relevant – he is an excellent writer and has helped the class clarify their writing and ideas behind the thesis proposal."
"This class helped me become more confident in my craft."
"The course was great and insightful."