Bio & Contact

Marina Beach, Santhome, Chennai

 

Andy Jackson has performed at dozens of events and festivals (including The Age Melbourne Writers Festival, Brisbane Writers FestivalPrakriti Poetry Festival [in Chennai, India], Goa Literary & Arts Festival, Australian Poetry Festival, Queensland Poetry Festival, Clifden Arts Festival [Ireland], Newcastle Young Writers Festival and Overload Poetry Festival), had poems published in a variety of print and on-line journals, been awarded grants from the Australia Council and Arts Victoria, been the recipient of an Australian Society of Authors mentorship, and self-published two collections of poetry.  He has been awarded residencies from Victorian Writers Centre, Katharine Susannah Prichard Writers Centre (Perth) and Asialink.  He is also an infrequent collaborator with musicians, sound artists and other writers.

His first full-length collection of poems, Among the Regulars,was published by papertiger media in 2010 – this book was shortlisted for the NSW Premier’s Prize for Poetry (the Kenneth Slessor Prize) and Highly Commended in the Anne Elder Award.  A collaborative puppetry-poetry performance with Rachael Wenona Guy entitled Ambiguous Mirrors won the City of Yarra Award for Most Innovative Work at the Overload Poetry Festival in 2009.  He won the 2008 Arts ACT Rosemary Dobson Award for Best Unpublished Poem for Secessionist.

In 2013, with thanks to funding from Copyright Agency, he attended the Summer Writing Program at the Jack Kerouac School of Disembodied Poetics at Naropa University, Boulder, Colorado USA.  Also in 2013, with funding from Arts Victoria and through Pozible, he performed Ambiguous Mirrors in Ireland with Rachael Guy.

Also in 2013, he won the Whitmore Press Manuscript Prize.  The resulting collection of poems – the thin bridge – has just recently been released.

Another collection – Immune systems – was released by Transit Lounge in 2015.

In 2016, a chapbook – That knocking – will be published by Little Windows. A full-length collection of (auto)biographical poems of people with Marfan Syndrome – Music our bodies can’t hold – is forthcoming through Hunter Publishers.

Andy has the genetic condition Marfan Syndrome.

 

QUOTES

So scholarly without the vanity, the poems feel as intimate as if you had naturally written them and dreamt them up all by yourself, no doubt of it. In a way, they are conversational, but mostly they are reflective and witness-poetics that are composed in order to get what foulness you have to look at, and what inspiration. Let us hope that Andy Jackson scores every prize there is for poetry, not just in Australia, where poetry seems not all that possible due to our ministers not reading any of it, but in every country where art is seen as higher than the latest machine-gunning.

Barry Dickins, Arena Magazine

This is a poetry in which seemingly contradictory attributes are embodied. Lyric beauty combines with an unflinching gaze, self-assuredness with vulnerability, awareness of minute bodily gesture with existentialist questionings… ‘Among the Regulars’ is a distinctive, impressive and thought-provoking collection. By asking the reader to step into the body of another, it challenges us to consider the impact of assumptions of ‘normality’ on the individual. Ultimately though, it is the presence of Jackson himself breathing through the lines which makes this such a moving work.

Debbie Lim, Mascara Literary Review

As director of the festival, all poets are my favourite children, but a special mention needs to go to Andy Jackson who along with Genevieve and her trusty harp Jezebel, and David Splatt on saw, absolutely knocked the socks off the punters at the Edinburgh Castle. Coburg never sounded so good.

– Luis Gonzales Serrano, Director, Overload Poetry Festival

Heartbreaking but controlled… parables, hymns and moving observations of relationships between people and then between the poet and himself or him-selves…  Poem upon poem, the reader is confronted by the political and private (one is the other, here), then forcefully invited to take notice of those things from which we often shy away.  It combines passion, originality and a control of form. He eloquently, emotionally tells his own story while never letting these strong emotions override the poetry – he is in total control of his matter. It is an intelligent but accessible collection.

Judges, NSW Premier’s Literary Awards, 2011

A polished and assured collection, so radiant with insight and sureness of touch that it’s impossible to remain unmoved. Andy Jackson has the uncanny knack of seeing humanity, like a burning filament, underneath what appears at first mundane. His poems, like beautifully shaped pieces of music, change melody and cadence but always resonate, coming to us out of pools of silence to show us the pathos in difficult conversations, late night drinks with friends, sexuality, grief, and an extraordinarily acute awareness of physicality and mortality. They’re poems that disarm you with their gentleness while refusing to flinch from what’s there.

– Cate Kennedy

Compassion is, and has always been, the distinguishing feature of Andy Jackson’s work… [a compassion which is] hard-won rather than casual; unflinching rather than sentimental.

Geoff Page, The Australian

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27 thoughts on “Bio & Contact

  1. Andy, great to hear from you! i guess you heard from Mandy that we bumped into her at St. Andy’s mkt recently. i asked her for your details as i haven’t heard a fart from you since you closed GMC!

    reading your notes shoots memories across my brain from when i visited with Bronya in 2000, but i won’t patronise you with snippets of my short visit.

    i would love to catch up with you in feb when you get back. let me know if you want to do that. i believe Mandy sent you my details….. let me know if you need them again.

    i’ve never done a blog b4 (blog virgin) and i feel like such a nerd doing it, but here goes.

    take care, my old friend.

    thom

    1. Would be good to catch up when I get back, for sure, Thom. And, no, it wouldn’t be patronising at all – I’d be so interested in hearing what India seemed lke to you. Feel free to post here, or email me. Hope you’re well.

  2. Hey Andy,

    I found you through Graham’s compiling of Stylus’ Street/Life edition (I’ve got a couple in there as well) and I think ‘Ghazal’ is phenomenal.

    I’ve subscribed here to keep up with what you do. Looking forward to seeing more!

    – Jeremy

    1. Cheers, Jeremy. I love the free-wheeling engaged philosophical tone of “… William St Brigade”. Now I have to actually blog! 😉

    1. KSP so far has been great – it’s under a flight-path and near the freeway, but it’s nestled among trees and near a National Park. I’m in a cottage behind the Writers Centre, so I can be busy writing, but also drop in on writers groups, sit in the library or whatever – it feels like the human-writer balance is healthy. The KSP people are sincere and amateur in a good way. I’ll probably blog more in detail on the experience once it’s over, late Aug. Cheers!

  3. Hi Andy,

    I was at Perth Poetry Club today, and bought your last copy of Among the Regulars (have already read most of it and love your writing). Your poetry is beautiful.

    I’m contacting you because you left a sheet of notes in the book, and there are some numbers on it that I thought you might want/need.

    Let me know if you do.

    Cheers,

    Pat

    1. Tried to send you an email but it didn’t seem to work. Anyway, yes, if it’s not too much of a hassle, could you send it to me c/- KSP Writers Centre? Thanks so much for your comments! Regards, Andy.

  4. hey Andy,
    just found this site on monday and found it to be so wonderful and also an ability to say hello as well..I could keep in touch! but I was at school and didn’t have the time then to write
    ….. so tonight nursing a migraine bod and Rach out catching up with sam..I thought I would look you up again..and there was a new posting!!!
    feel like I can get to know you in a whole new way so that will be a treat.
    big hug
    melinda

  5. hi Andy,
    I saw you get off the train today at flinders street and yelled out to you when you reached the bottom of the stairs, yeah just thought i would inform.

    – kayla.

  6. Hi Andy, sounds like you are having an amazing time in India. Wow. I wanted to contact you to discuss an idea for a panel at the WordStorm / AP Festival in Darwin in May 2012. Email me when you have a moment and I will send you the details. Cheers – melinda (George Dunford’s friend / AP Newcastle Symposium Tweeter-er)

  7. Hi Andy.. I actually found your blog via an advertisement for an Australian Poetry workshop that you are running later this year. I had some questions about it and despite contacting AP I haven’t had any success. So here I am leaving a little question about your online workshop “Poetry of the Body” on your blog! I am what you might dub a ‘poetry punter’, but have oft wondered about the question of how shared emotion is engendered in art despite the lack of shared experience.. Can you tell me whether it’s okay to get involved in your workshop despite being a complete poetic novice? -Kat

  8. The comments at the top of the page are fab and deserved but I wish Quasimodo was the first thing I could see when I refresh the page.

    It is the most beautiful piece of poetry I have ever read.

    1. The self-effacing me wants to say “oh you should read more poems then!”, but I’ll shove him aside and just say “thankyou so much”. It’s a fantastic thing to think someone has been affected by your writing.

      1. I will read more… and more. On another brief note as I know you are not an info kiosk, there is supposedly a good regular place for people who want to ease in to reading poetry out loud? Do you know it? btw, we shared a class about 12 years ago.. at RMIT I think. Annerliegh

  9. Hi Andy,

    Just stumbled upon your site from your poems in the current issue of Wordgathering. I absolutely loved them (“Desensitized” in particular spoke to the disillusioned patient in me.) Really enjoying your blog as well, intriguing thoughts. I just wanted to drop you a line to let you know you have a fan in Puerto Rico!

    Michelle Fernandez

    1. Oh, and I know what you mean by disillusioned patient – sometimes I think it’s almost impossible to find a non-disillusioned one! – I find it so ironic that something so personal can be so impersonal…

  10. Hello Andy – I bought a ticket for the CHR&RF (Apr 29th). Saw you on the line-up and thought I’d do a bit of research. Are there any bookstores in Melbourne stocking your work that you’d recommend?
    Sorry, old school – prefer to flip through a book in hand before I purchase. Images on an online bookshop just don’t cut it.
    Many thanks
    Wolfe

    1. Thanks Wolfe, and I totally get it – I’m tactile when it comes to books too. I always recommend Collected Works, 1st floor Nicholas Building on Swanston St in Melb, for poetry. I’m also fond of Brunswick Bound on Sydney Road. Apart from these, any independent bookshop should have (or be able to order in) my book “Immune Systems” (it has national distribution through the publisher Transit Lounge, whereas the others are direct through the publisher so they have slightly less chance of being there). Of course, I’ll also be bringing books to the festival. Looking forward to it; I’m in fine company. Cheers, A.

      1. Hello again
        Saw you at the festival today – should have been more poets there, the Sandy & Andy show was the highlight. Many thanks for signing my copy of ‘that knocking’. Which one of your books contains a goodly amount of poems about love? The one you read at the festival was absolutely beautiful
        Kindest of Regards, Wolfe

  11. Thanks Wolfe, so glad you enjoyed our session (I did too!). I almost always think festivals should have more poetry. If you’re interested in the love poems, probably “The thin bridge” would be the one. They all include one or two, though that one has three or four. It’s not a major theme in the poetry, but certainly a major theme in my life. Hopefully see you again up in Christmas Hills.

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