Friday, March 27, 2015

LaTasha N. Nevada Diggs at Headlands Center for the Arts

Poet and sound artist LaTasha N. Nevada Diggs was awarded a 2014 Fellowship in Poetry from the NEA along with a month-long residency at Headlands Center for the Arts where she will be beginning April 27. “You have no idea what this means to me given I've been in a such a mental funk,” says LaTasha. “This will provide some time away from New York to focus soundly on new and on-going work. It also grants me the opportunity to travel to a handful of places for research. So I guess the universe is saying I'm doing alright even when I don't always understand this path taken. What is clear is that many hands, eyes and spirits are holding me up and pushing me forward on this path. For that I am humbled and grateful.”

Latasha works is a hybrid of sounds and words incorporating many languages, including Japanese, Spanish, Hindi, Welsh, and Maori. Her highly acclaimed first collection of poems, TwERK (Belladonna* 2013), has been called “a dope jam of dictions” by poet Terrance Hayes. In a review of TwERK for the online literary site Montevidayo, poet Joyelle McSweeney writes: “Diggs’s poems truly work the whole body of the poem, the whole body of sound, the whole body of history, the whole body of voice and ear, the whole body of language and the ability of the page to be its own sonic syntax; they articulate and rotate joints that seemed fixed; they are bawdy and triumphant and they more than work. They TwERK.” 

A graduate of the Borough of Manhattan Community College with an MA from New York University and an MFA from California College of the Arts, LaTasha has published several chapbooks, as well as the album Television (2003). She has been a poetry editor for the online arts journal exittheapple and, with writer Greg Tate, is a founding editor of YoYo/SO4magazine

Diggs’s interdisciplinary work has been featured in exhibits at several New York museums, including the Whitney and the Museum of Modern Art. Her additional honors include scholarships and residencies from the New York Foundation for the Arts, Cave Canem, VCCA, the Harlem Community Arts Fund, the Jerome Foundation, the Eben Demarest Trust, Caldera Arts, Black Earth Institute, and the Barbara Deming Memorial Foundation.

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