Air in Unexpected Places

Air in Unexpected Places

Take a deep breath, prepare to air new work, and join us as we break out of the vacuum to explore the air around us.

‘We have been made aware of the fragility of something that has been previously taken for granted, but now asserts itself as fundamentally important. ‘Atmo-spheres’ become understood as one of the ontological spheres in which humanity exists, and through which different micro-spheres are connected to one another.’ – Matt Bluemink 

‘Artworks let in a breath of fresh air from the chaos that brings us vision.’ – Deleuze & Guattari 

Luce Irigiray in The Forgetting of Air says that to forget the air is a privilege, one that runs the risk of being impossible in the future. Although often thought of as a vacuum – an empty space into which we can project – the air is teeming with life and vital matter. In this class, we will pay sustained attention to the air we breathe, to our unequally-shared emergency of air. 

Among others, we will read Luce Irigiray, Bruno Latour, Christina Sharpe, Jerry Zhee, Robin Wall Kimmerer, Charles Olson, AR Ammons, Daisy LaFarge, Dylan Thomas, Juliana Spahr, Paul Celan, and Alexis Pauline Gumbs, asking how they share and shape our understandings of air, and how they show us where to find it; from foams, aircrete and other bubbles, to the cracks in city pavements, to the pockets of air in our masks. We will ask what we can learn from these authors and how we can attend to shared histories and futures of air through our poetry.

5 fortnightly sessions over 10 weeks. No live chats. Suitable for UK & International students.

To apply for a concessionary rate, please send relevant documentation showing your eligibility for one of our concessions to administ[email protected]. Conditions of eligibility are detailed here. If you have any questions or wish to be added to the waiting list of a sold-out course, please email [email protected]. For more information visit our Online Courses page. 

Image Credit: Maria Teneva

About Andrew Wells View Profile

Andrew Wells is the author of two chapbooks, SEALED (Hesterglock, 2020) and Menacing Sense (Osmanthus, 2021). His work has appeared, or is forthcoming, in The Rialto, Poetry Wales, The London Magazine, Amberflora, The Scores, SAND Journal, and others. His recent writing is concerned with disorientation, anxiety among new ecologies, and being under the weather. He is co-editor of HVTN Press and an MFA Candidate at Columbia University.

‘The Poetry School has given me more confidence in sharing my work with strangers. The supportive environment has provided me with a safe space to experiment. I've learned more about my own writing, but also about the huge diversity of contemporary poetry and poets. I've felt part of a poetry community where poets, regardless of experience mingle freely. It's been liberating.’

– Spring 2023 School Survey

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