Headlands Center for the Arts

Emily Wolahan

california | writing
Affiliate Program 2018—2019
Affiliate Program 2017—2018
Affiliate Program 2016—2017

Artist Statement

I’m a poet interested in how expectations are challenged and reversed in art, history, and our personal lives. I seek forms that push back against lyric and narrative expectations perceived and imagined, generous and overbearing. Most of my writing involves a rigorous practice of looking. An exploration of the ethics of looking has become central to my outlook and current projects.

While at Headlands

At the Headlands, I am working on two projects. The first is a manuscript titled Second-generation Landscape that explores how the constant presence of disaster has changed perception and experience. Through a mixture of lyric poems and one central long poem, Second-generation Landscape explores how words convey savage change and asks how much we are prepared to learn about this and ourselves. I am also working on a collection of “wife-woman” poems and surrounding ephemera. The “wife-woman” poems portray a twentieth-century artist and what she sacrificed and earned in order to make her nature-based sculptures. The setting of the Headlands directly informs this work.

Selected Texts

Still Lifes and Landscapes, Georgia Review, Spring 2017, Winner of the Loraine Williams Poetry Prize

Our Notes Say—, Tinderbox Journal, March 2017

When We Weary, What Art?, DIAGRAM 10.5

Personal Website