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Programs and Tours


October 27

Penny W. Stamps Speaker Series

Thursday, October 27, 5:10–7 p.m.
Historic Theater, Michigan Theater
603 E. Liberty

Ann Arbor, MI 48104

For Emily Pilloton and her non-profit agency Project H Design, design is a process of building and activism to benefit the community. Pilloton and her partner, Matthew Miller, also developed and teach Studio H, a design/build high school curriculum in the poorest county in North Carolina. In one year, her students earn college and high school credits researching, designing, and constructing a contextually responsive and socially transformative piece of full-scale architecture for their home town. This is the only full-scale design/build program at a high school level in the country. Pilloton has appeared at TED and on the Colbert Report, and authored the book Design Revolution.

With support from Arts Engine and the University of Michigan Museum of Art (UMMA).

Established with the generous support of alumna Penny W. Stamps, the Speaker Series brings respected emerging and established artists/designers from a broad spectrum of media to the School to conduct a public lecture and engage with students, faculty, and the larger University and Ann Arbor communities. Additional support is provided by our media sponsor, Michigan Radio.

Events in the Penny Stamps series are always free of charge and open to the public.

categories: Artists and Curators

Writers Series

Thursday, October 27, 5:10–7 p.m.
Helmut Stern Auditorium

Poets Vievee Francis, Mary Leader, and Mark Turcotte are joined by their editors—Parneshia Jones, Tony Frazer, and Reginald Gibbons, respectively—to read from recent books and to discuss the collaborative process of bringing a book of poetry into print.

Vievee Francis is the author the forthcoming Horse in the Dark, winner of the 2010 Cave Canem Northwestern University Press Poetry Prize, and of Blue-Tail Fly, a collection of poems published by Wayne State University Press in 2006. Her work has appeared or is forthcoming in many journals, anthologies, and textbooks, including Callaloo, Crab Orchard Review, Rattle, Approaching Literature: Reading Writing and Thinking, Best American Poetry 2010 and Angles of Ascent: A Norton Anthology of Contemporary African American Poetry. She earned her MFA from the University of Michigan, where she was the 2009/2010 Poet in Residence for the Lloyd Hall Scholars Program. She is the recipient of a 2009 Rona Jaffe Award, a 2010 Kresge Artist Fellowship, and Callaloo and Cave Canem fellowships.

Mary Leader began writing poems in the midst of a career as a lawyer in her home state of Oklahoma, first as an Assistant State Attorney General and later as a Referee for the Oklahoma Supreme Court. She is the author of two award-winning books in the United States: Red Signature, a selection of the 1996 National Poetry Series, published by Graywolf Press in 1997; and The Penultimate Suitor, winner of the 2000 Iowa Poetry Prize, published by the University of Iowa Press in 2001.

Mark Turcotte spent his earliest years on North Dakota’s Turtle Mountain Chippewa Reservation and in the migrant camps of the western United States. Later, he grew up in and around Lansing, Michigan, then traveled the country, working and living on the road for nearly fifteen years before landing in Chicago where he began writing in earnest. Turcotte is author of four poetry collections, including The Feathered Heart and Exploding Chippewas. His poetry and short fiction have appeared in many literary journals, including TriQuarterly, POETRY, Hunger Mountain, Rosebud, Prairie Schooner, Kenyon Review, Ploughshares, Sentence and The Missouri Review, and has been anthologized in The POETRY Anthology, 1912–2002 and Poetry Daily: 366, among other collections.

He has been the recipient of a Lannan Foundation Literary Grant, and has also been awarded two Literary Fellowships by the Wisconsin Arts Board. He was a writer-in-residence for the National Book Foundation’s “American Voices project,” and was awarded a Lannan Writer’s Residency in Marfa, Texas. After receiving an MFA in Creative Writing from Western Michigan University, Turcotte served as the 2008–2009 Visiting Native Writer at the Institute of American Indian Arts in Santa Fe, New Mexico. He lives in Chicago where he is a Visiting Assistant Professor in Creative Writing at DePaul University.

The authors will be available to sign books after the reading. As always, books are available for purchase in the Museum Store.

UMMA is pleased to be the site for the Department of English Program in Creative Writing Zell Visiting Writers Series, which brings outstanding writers each semester. The Series is made possible through a generous gift from UM alumna Helen Zell (’64). For more information, please see

categories: Writers Series