Poetry. Memoir. A mosaic of lyrical vignettes, at once deeply personal and political, set against the turbulent backdrop of Arab/Western relations. Adnan writes, "Contrary to what is usually believed, it is not general ideas and grandiose unfolding of great events that impress the mind during times of heightened historic upheavals, but rather the uninterrupted flow of little experiences, observations, disturbances, small ecstacies, or barely perceptible discouragements that make up day-to-day living."
author siteKim Jensen @ Rain Taxi
Etel Adnan was born in Beirut, Lebanon in 1925, the daughter of a Greek Christian from Smyrna and a high- ranking Ottoman officer from Damascus. Her work as a whole is a faithful record of the times and places she has lived in Beirut, Paris, and in the San Francisco Bay Area. At least eighteen works by Adnan have been published in English. They include SITT MARIE ROSE (Post-Apollo Press, 1982); THE ARAB APOCALYPSE (Post-Apollo Press, 1989); SEA AND FOG (Nightboat Books, 2012), winner of the Lambda Literary Award for Lesbian Poetry and the California Book Award for Poetry; and PREMONITION (Kelsey Street Press, 2014). Nightboat Books published the 2-volume set, TO LOOK AT THE SEA IS TO BECOME WHAT ONE IS: AN ETEL ADNAN READER, in 2014. In 2011, Adnan received Small Press Traffic's Lifetime Achievement Award. Her paintings, described by New York Times art critic Roberta Smith as "stubbornly radiant abstractions," have been widely exhibited, most recently at Documenta 13 and in the 2014 Whitney Biennial. Spanning media and genres, Adnan's writings have led to numerous collaborations with artists and musicians, including the French part of CIVIL WarS, a multi-language opera by American stage director Robert Wilson, performed in Lyon and Bobigny in 1985. Author City: SAUSALITO, CA USA