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Artists Connect: Cynthia Cruz


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  • Free with museum admission
    Museum admission is free for Illinois residents every Thursday, 5:00–8:00—including during this event.

Poet Cynthia Cruz presents an in-gallery reading and talk in response to the painting Dead Birds and Shot Bags, attributed to Flemish artist Pieter Boel. Cruz reads from her recent poetry collection, Dregs. Like a series of slides from a film reel, the poems of Dregs reveal the ruin, remnants, or dregs left over from the wars and economic and human inequalities of today’s world.

Artists Connect is a series of in-gallery programs that highlight the creative process. Artists, poets, dancers, and musicians engage with works of art, making connections to their own practice and inspiring new ways of understanding the Art Institute’s collection.

About the Artist
Cynthia Cruz is the author of five collections of poems, including her most recent, Dregs, published this fall by Four Way Books. Her first collection of essays, Quietude: Essays on Silence and Power, will be published in 2018 by BookThug. She has published poems in numerous literary journals and magazines, including the New Yorker, the Kenyon Review, the Paris Review, and the Boston Review, and in anthologies including Isn’t it Romantic: 100 Love Poems by Younger Poets (2004), and The Iowa Anthology of New American Poetries (2004). She is the recipient of fellowships from Yaddo, the MacDowell Colony, and a Hodder fellowship from Princeton University.

Cruz teaches writing at Sarah Lawrence College. She has previously taught at the Juilliard School, Fordham University, the Rutgers-Newark MFA Program, and Eugene Lang College. Born in Germany, Cruz grew up in Northern California, and earned her BA at Mills College, her MFA in Creative Writing at Sarah Lawrence College, and her MFA in art writing and criticism at the School of Visual Arts. She has published essays, interviews, book and art reviews in the Los Angeles Review of Books, Hyperallergic, Guernica, American Poetry Review, and The Rumpus. She lives in Brooklyn.

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Support for Live Arts programming is provided by the Woman’s Board of the Art Institute of Chicago.


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