Tuesday, February 5, 2019

Friday, February 8: Steve Benson, Jermane Cooper, Suzanne Stein

The Poetic Research Bureau presents...

Suzanne Stein and Steve Benson, reading and performing together, and celebrating the GaussPDF release of DO YOUR OWN DAMN LAUNDRY, which documents the 36 improvisational dialogues they performed together in 2011-2012. Accompanying them will be poet Jermane Cooper.



Friday, February 8 2019

Doors 7:30pm
Reading 8pm


Steve Benson has written in various modes and media under the sign of poetry, most often orally and textually, since 1966. He has lived in downeast Maine since 1996, where he’s worked as a clinical psychologist in a small town. His poetry readings have often incorporated diverse media, improvisation, and collaboration with brilliant, radical writers, musicians, and filmmakers. Benson acted in the late 1970s Poets’ Theater in San Francisco, directed Carla Harryman’s play La Quotidienne at New Langton Arts in 1983, and held a poets theater workshop at Intersection for the Arts in 1992. He wrote and transcribed (from orally improvised performances) the material in Blindspots (1981), Blue Book (1988), Open Clothes (2005), and other books. What This Is is forthcoming from chax press. Benson co-authored the Grand Piano series of autobiographical essays (2006-10) with nine old friends. He and Suzanne Stein partnered in a series of 36 improvised on-line messaging chat performances in 2011 and 2012, appearing as a book this month from Gauss.pdf as DO YOUR OWN DAMN LAUNDRY. They also created a half-hour film, NOW, for the Third Annual Festival of Poets Theater in December 2017. Benson shares links to work products on-line through http://www.stevebensonasis.com/.

As an African American military brat growing up around the U.S., Jermane Cooper did not often think about heritage or culture. Only when diverse populations and college-level coursework broadened his horizons did he realize that a significant part of who he was had turned up missing. Jermane’s work explores common issues, often portrayed through fantastical elements. It stresses the ideals that should be a part of every culture, such as acceptance, honor, and compassion, as well as concepts of what ‘could be’ regarding himself and the world. His work can be found online at Timbooktu.com under the pen name ‘Tyiako’, or his blog at wordsmithshelf.blogspot.com.

Suzanne Stein’s poetry publications and performance documents include The Kim Game, TOUT VA BIEN, and Passenger Ship; her book-length poem New Sutras is forthcoming this spring. With the poet Steve Benson, she is the author of DO YOUR OWN DAMN LAUNDRY, just released from GaussPDF, which documents the 36 improvisational dialogues they performed together between 2011 and 2012. Essays and poems have appeared recently in The Best American Experimental Writing, Elderly, and Open Space; performance recordings are archived at PennSound. Suzanne is also a publisher, editor, and curator. She was the founding editor, and for eight years editor-in-chief, of Open Space, the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art’s hybrid art and language platform and publication. Her chapbook press TAXT was formed in 2005 to distribute the work of Bay Area writers and artists then under-represented in print. In the mid-90s she was the co-director and film curator of a little gallery called {four walls, in San Francisco.

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