Millay Colony for the Arts Resident Bios Past Artists


Spencer Everett, Karla Wozniak, Michael Dauro, Matt Barnson, Alyse Knorr, Sophie Lee, Tereza Swanda (not pictured)

June, 2014

Matthew Barnson, Composer; Dublin, Ireland - Matthew composes for orchestras, choirs, string quartets, voices, chamber ensembles, dancers, and computers. Recently, his music has been performed at Carnegie Hall, the Museum of Modern Art, the Kennedy Center, the Aldeburgh Festival, the Royal Academy of Music, the Santa Fe Chamber Music Festival, ISCM World Music Days, MATA, Wigmore Hall, Aspen, the San Francisco War Memorial, and other venues throughout the United States and Europe. His work has been recognized with awards and commissions from the Barlow Endowment, the Aaron Copland House, NewMusicUSA, the Jerome Foundation, Yale University, and the American Academy of Arts and Letters, among others and in addition to residencies at a number of artist colonies in the United States and abroad. He studied at Eastman, the University of Pennsylvania, IRCAM, and Yale with Christopher Rouse, Joseph Schwantner, Steven Stucky, Augusta Read Thomas, Martin Bresnick, Ezra Laderman, Ingram Marshall, and David Lang. Studies with Wolfgang Rihm at Acanthes were brief but important and influential. Large-scale works have been commissioned by, and performed in recent seasons by Third Coast Percussion, the Yale School of Music, the JACK Quartet, and Volti.
     Barnson teaches composition, electronic music, theory and the history of music after 1945 and has taught at Yale College, chaired the composition and theory department at New York’s Third Street Music School Settlement, and currently serves as an assistant professor of composition at Trinity College Dublin. Important engagements on the horizon include the premiere of a new string orchestra work with Yale at Carnegie Hall and a new dance work to be premiered in June at the Centre Pompidou in Paris. A recording by the Arditti and JACK Quartets of Barnson’s string quartets will be released on Tzadik this summer.

Michael Luis Dauro, Poetry; Bloomington, IN - Michael was born in Long Island, N.Y. He received his MFA from Indiana University and continues to live in Bloomington where he works, writes and tutors at an after-school program. He is also a mentor with PEN’s Prison Writing Mentorship Program. His work has appeared in At Length, Poets Weave, La Fovea, and is forthcoming in Toe Good Poetry.
     Michael was recently named a finalist for the 2013 Ruth Lily Poetry Fellowship. He is also a CantoMundo Fellow. While in graduate school, Michael served as the Genre Editor of Poetry for the Indiana Review and will be the Guest Editor at Toe Good Poetry for 2014. 

Spencer Everett, Poetry; Brooklyn, NY - Spencer is the recipient of the 2011 Hyman Brown award from Brooklyn College, where he graduated last spring with an MFA in poetry. He continues to teach composition in Brooklyn College’s English department. His poems and reviews have been featured or are forthcoming in iO: A Journal of New American Poetry, Flying Object’s It’s My Decision, and The Faster Times. He is co-curator of Copula, a Brooklyn-based reading series featuring innovative poetry and multimedia art.

Alyse Knorr, Poetry; Anchorage, AK – “I am the author of Annotated Glass (Furniture Press Books 2013), a novel-in-verse exploring the lesbian lyric love poem set against the backdrop of the deep American South. I received my MFA from George Mason University. My work has appeared or is forthcoming in more than 50 national literary journals, including Drunken Boat, RHINO, Puerto Del Sol, and The Southern Poetry Anthology. I co-founded and co-edit the inclusive feminist press Gazing Grain Press and serve as a term instructor of English at the University of Alaska Anchorage.
     "I have completed an artist's residency at Vermont Studio Center, participated in numerous gallery shows and cross-disciplinary artist's collaborations, and given readings and panels across the United States, including at the 2013 AWP conference."

Sophie Lee, Visual Arts; Los Angeles, CA – “Since graduating from the University of California, Irvine, with an MFA in 2011, I have been very fortunate to have had two solo exhibitions at the well respected artist run gallery, Commonwealth and Council. Additionally, I have participated in group shows at The Armory Center for the Arts, Beacon Arts Building, Human Resources, and Las Cienegas Art Projects. All of the above galleries are located in Los Angeles.
     "I received the Resident Fees Graduate Fellowship at the University of California, Irvine between 2008-2011. I was a nominee for the Dedalus Foundation MFA Fellowship in Painting and Sculpture in 2010, and received the Mills College Scholarship between 2002- 2003.”

Tereza Swanda, Visual Arts; Swampscott, MA – “I have shown my series, Bodies Form, To/From Mothering Alphabet, at the Center on Contemporary Art where the series won first prize in the 2010 Annual Exhibition, Memory Upgrade. I have exhibited nationally and internationally at Pradelna Bohnice in Prague, at the University of Oregon in Eugene, Berliner Kunstprojekt in Berlin, at the Kinsey Institute in Bloomington, IN, at 450 Broadway Gallery in New York City, and online in Storyscale Journal. My work has been published this year in the Yakima Herald, in the article by Pat Muir “10x10x10 Tieton: Mighty Tieton’s small art exhibit keeps getting bigger,” where one of my soaps won the Juror’s Award. My artwork was also published in the Statesman Journal in the article, “Open Hearts Out of Africa,” by Ron Cowan and a number of times in the NY Arts/Berliner Kunst magazine. I have installed site-specific work, Bodies Reform, in the Bakalar and Paine Galleries of Masssachusetts College of Art and Design as well as at Chemeketa Community College Art Gallery in Through the Eyes of Strangers, artists visit South Africa. I received my M.F.A. in Visual Arts from Vermont College of Fine Arts and I hold two BFAs, one in Painting and the other in Sculpture both from Massachusetts College of Art and Design.
     "Residencies and workshops are a continuous part of my artistic development as I greatly appreciate the dialogue with other artists and professionals. This year I have attended a Ceramic Residency in the Czech Republic. I attend workshops with the artistic duo, Rosenclaire, (Rose Shakinovsky and Claire Gavronsky,) in Italy since 2000. I have participated in The Everyday in Contemporary Art and Practice at UC Berkeley in 2009 and was part of the Visual Art and Cultural Exchange Workshop at Michaelis School of Fine Art in Cape Town in 2004.”

Karla Wozniak, Visual Arts; Knoxville, TN – Karla is a native of Berkeley, CA, received her MFA from the Yale School of Art. Her recent solo exhibitions include This Weather Is Cosmic, Gregory Lind Gallery, San Francisco, CA; Magic Mountain, Colburn Gallery, University of Vermont, Burlington; and Significant Landscapes, Gregory Lind Gallery, San Francisco, CA. Recent group exhibitions include LIFE AND TIMES: Contemporary Notions of Place, Georgia Southern University, Statesboro, GA; and Bronx Calling, Bronx Museum of Art, Bronx, NY. In 2013 she curated The Sacred and Profane Love Machine at Ortega y Gasset Projects, in Queens and in 2012 she co-curated the exhibition Mark, Wipe, Scrape, Shape, at SPACESHIFTER, Brooklyn, NY with the Artist Sangram Majumdar.
     Wozniak’s distinctions include a UCross Fellowship (2012), a New York Foundation for the Arts fellowship (2011); participation in the Bronx Museum’s Artist in the Marketplace program (2011); participation in the Marie Walsh Sharpe Space Program (2009-10); and MacDowell Colony Fellowships (2007, 2005). Her work has been featured in a number of publications, including The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, San Francisco Chronicle, Houston Chronicle, Village Voice, Art Ldt. Magazine and The Huffington Post, among others. Wozniak is currently an Assistant Professor at the University of Tennessee, Knoxville.


Josie Sigler, Dickson Lam, Galen Cheney, Meredith Nickel, Carmen Machado, Samuel Ace

May, 2014

Samuel Ace, Poetry; Tuscon, AZ - Samuel Ace is the author of three collections of poetry: NORMAL SEX, HOME IN THREE DAYS, DON'T WASH., and most recently STEALTH, co-authored with poet Maureen Seaton (Chax Press). He is a recipient of a New York Foundation for the Arts grant, two-time finalist for a Lambda Literary Award in Poetry, winner of the Astraea Lesbian Writer’s Fund Prize in Poetry, The Katherine Anne Porter Prize for Fiction, the Firecracker Alternative Book Award in poetry. He was also a 2012 finalist for the National Poetry Series. His work has been widely anthologized and has appeared in or is forthcoming from, Ploughshares, Eoagh, Spiral Orb, Kenyon Review, Rhino, 3:am, Versal, Trickhouse, The Collagist, Pear Noir!, The Volta, Mandorla and others. He lives in Tucson, AZ and Truth or Consequences, NM.

Galen Cheney, Visual Arts; Middlesex, Vermont - Chaney has been painting professionally for more than 20 years. After receiving her MFA from the Maryland Institute, College of Art, she lived in Italy then criss-crossed her way across the US doing a variety of jobs, from magazine editor to bronze foundry carver to teacher, custom framer, and massage therapist, all the while continuing to paint. She has received numerous awards and fellowships for her painting, including a nomination for a 2013 Joan Mitchell Foundation grant, three full fellowships to the Vermont Studio Center, and a publication award from Open Studios Press.
     Galen has exhibited her work in Florence, Italy, Montreal, and throughout the U.S. Recent exhibitions of 2012-13 include Helen Day Art Center, BCA Center, and the Fleming Museum, all in Vermont; Saint-Gaudens National Historic Site, in Cornish, N.H.; and The Painting Center in New York City. In 2014 she has solo exhibitions scheduled for the Alliance of Visual Arts in Lebanon, NH, the Vermont Supreme Court, Vermont Studio Center, and Green Mountain College.

Dickson Lam, Non-fiction; Houston, TX – ‘I am a nonfiction MFA candidate at the University of Houston. I also hold an MFA degree in fiction from Rutgers-Newark University.
     “My work can be found in The Rumpus, the Kartika Review and The Review Review. I have received a Napa Valley Writers’ Conference Scholarship (2011), placed in the Writers at Work Nonfiction Contest (2nd Place, 2008) and also The Ledge Magazine Fiction Competition (Semi-Finalist, 2008).”

Carmen Machado, Fiction; Philadelphia, PA - “I'm a graduate of the Iowa Writers' Workshop and the Clarion Science Fiction & Fantasy Writers' Workshop. My writing has appeared or is forthcoming in AGNI, The American Reader, Tin House's Open Bar, Five Chapters, Best Women's Erotica 2012, VICE, The Paris Review Daily, The Hairpin, The Rumpus, Los Angeles Review of Books, and many other publications. I was the recipient of the 2011 Richard Yates Short Story Prize, and was nominated for a Pushcart Prize in 2012.”

Meredith Nickie, Visual Arts; New York, NY - Nickie is a Vincentian-Canadian artist based in New York who works in sculpture, installation and photography. Her diverse projects challenge conventional ideas of structure, taste and progress in representations of race and class framed by the enduring legacies of culture and capital.
     Nickie completed the Whitney Museum ISP, earned a MFA from Cornell University, and a BFA from York University. She was a DAAD Fellow in Berlin at the Universität der Künst, and a Jackie McLean Fellow at the University of Hartford. Nickie has held residencies at the Skowhegan School of Painting and Sculpture, and the Santa Fe Art Institute. Her work has recently been exhibited in New York at Art in General, Sculpture Center, Winkleman Gallery, PS122, and Rush Arts Gallery; in addition to IDEA Space at Colorado College, Colorado Springs; Galerie Circa, Montreal; A Space Gallery, Toronto; Vox Populi Gallery, Philadelphia; Artspace, New Haven; The John and June Allcott Gallery, The University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill; and the 2010 Sculpture Biennial at the Evergreen Museum, Baltimore.

Josie Sigler, Fiction; Portland, OR - Josie Sigler was born Downriver Detroit and grew up in the Midwest. Her chapbook, Calamity, was the winner of the Proem Press Award, published in 2009. Her first full-length book of poems, living must bury, winner of the 2010 Motherwell Prize, was published by Fence Books in 2010. Her collection of stories, The Galaxie and Other Rides, was selected for the Ruby Pickens Tartt First Fiction Award and published by Livingston Press in 2012. Other recent awards include the Barthelme Prize for “The Compartment” selected by Ander Monson; first place in the Fugue Magazine Annual Writing Contest for “The Watcher in the Woods” selected by Pam Houston; the Prism International Fiction Prize for “Ms. Pacman”; and first place in the Story Quarterly Short Fiction Competition for “My Catholic Boyfriend” selected by Karen Russell. Josie was the recipient of a 2011 PEN Northwest Margery Davis Boyden Wilderness Residency, which affords a writer the opportunity to work on a remote homestead near the Rogue River in southern Oregon’s Klamath Mountains. She recently accepted a job teaching writing and literature at University of Rhode Island in Kingston. She is currently working on a novel and a new book of poetry.


April Group Residency; Sacred Hostess: Kristi Sword, Roberto Carlos Lange, Nadia Hironaka, Matthew Suib. Not pictured, Jena Osman

Makalani Bandele, Rachel Ostrow, Deborah Salomon, Emily Witt, Adam Klein, Gilbert Hsiao

April, 2014

Makalani Bandele, Poetry; Louisville, KY – “I grew up "a fly in the milk' in the suburbs of Louisville, KY. I narrowly escaped from the parochial school system there. In fact, I attended Catholic school from elementary through college. It is a long and complicated story, but after college I ended up in North Carolina, went to Divinity school, and became an ordained Baptist minister, eventually pastoring two churches in North Carolina before becoming a writer, musician, and freelance instructor of Literature and Creative Writing. I am a member of the Affrilachian Poets, a group of writers of color founded by Frank X Walker that live or have their roots in the region of Appalachia. I have been the recipient of an Ernest Sandeen Poetry Prize, a Literary LEO 1st Prize in Poetry, and a fellowship from Cave Canem Foundation. I have been nominated for a Pushcart Award in 2012 and 2013. My poems can be read in a wide variety of literary magazines and journals, both in print and online. Just to name a few: Prime Number Magazine, Barely South Review, The New Sound, African-American Review, Louisville Review, Black Arts Quarterly, Platte Valley Review, and Sou’wester. Hellfightin’, published by Willow Books, is my first full-length volume of poetry.”

Gilbert Hsiao, Visual Arts; Jersey City, NJ – “My work has been seen in venues such as PS 1, Mass MOCA, Contemporary Art Museum Houston, White Columns, and the Museum of Contemporary African Diasporia Arts, and I am represented in collections such as the Indianapolis Museum of Art, Swope Museum of Art, and the Progressive Art Corporation as well as in numerous private collections. I have shown work in commercial and public galleries in New York as well as internationally in countries such as Germany, France, Holland, Italy, Croatia, Thailand, Mexico, Australia, Canada, New Zealand and Brazil. I am currently represented by Minus Space in New York City, and dr julius | austullengen projekten in Berlin, Germany.
     “I received a fellowship from the New York Foundation for the Arts in 2008, which was used to spend time to paint and to meet other artists working in a similar vein Germany, where I lived for four years. Upon returning from Germany in 2012, I was awarded a yearlong residency at the Marie Walsh Sharpe Art Foundation Space program, with studios in Brooklyn, New York, which enabled me to explore several new directions that I had been thinking about for a number of years. A desire to expand beyond the scale of my panel paintings resulted in my first wall paintings. These wall paintings led to my creation of whole room environments lit by ultraviolet light. Further explorations with ultraviolet lighting led to pieces painted on recycled record albums, spun on old record players. Articles and reviews about my work have appeared in such publications as Art News, The Village Voice, Arts Houston, Houston Press, Hartford Courant and The New York Sun."

Adam Klein, Fiction; Castroville, CA – Adam received his MFA from The New School in 2009 and is an Assistant Professor of English at The American University of Afghanistan. Dzanc Books will publish his anthology: "The Gifts Of The State: New Afghan Writing" at the end of 2013. He is the author of High Risk's Lambda Book Award-nominee, "The Medicine Burns" and Serpent's Tail published his novel, "Tiny Ladies" in 2003. "A Hardship Post" appeared January 2012 in "Fourteen Hills" and was nominated for a Pushcart Prize. Recently, he has published in the "New York Times At War Blogs" and an essay, "The Unnameable Poor In India and Bangladesh" in openDemocracy. He is also the author of the artist monograph, "Jerome: After the Pageant," and the singer/ songwriter for the band, "The Size Queens." His work has appeared in "Bomb," "Best American Gay Fiction" (Little, Brown), "Men on Men" (Penguin/ Plume), MIT's "Performance Art Journal," "San Francisco Camerawork," and other journals and websites. His interdisciplinary piece, "Appetite for Redaction" was featured on the November 2011 "Electric Literature" blog and The Size Queens' Valentine's Day video diptych, "Old Skin" and "Affirmations for A Blow Up Doll" are available online at the Ninth Letter blog site.
     His most recent song cycle/ video "Consumption Work: Tammy, Cybertariat, At The Aral Sea" was premiered on Election Day, November 6th 2012

Rachel Ostrow, Visual Arts; Brooklyn, NY - Rachel is a Brooklyn based painter and printmaker raised in Buffalo, NY. She earned her BA in Fine Arts from Wesleyan University (1999), a Post-Baccalaureate Degree from the Maryland Institute College of Art (2002), and an MFA in painting from Hunter College (2008). She was awarded the Tom Woods award from Hunter College(2008), a printmaking residency at the Gowanus Studio Space, Brooklyn, NY (2010), and residency at the Joshua Tree Highlands Artist Residency, Joshua Tree, CA (2012). She has exhibited in Barcelona, Spain, Aix-en-Provence, France, Buffalo, NY, Joshua Tree, CA and New York City, NY. She currently (through October 9th) has an exhibition up at Gridspace gallery in Brooklyn, NY.

Deborah Salomon, Composer; Santa Rosa, CA – Deobrah attended Philadelphia College of Art, San Francisco Art Institute and received a BFA from URI. She was included in Andrea Schwartz Gallery, S.F.CA, SFMOMA Artist Gallery, S.F.CA., Drawing Center Viewing Program, NY,NY., and Kala Art Institute Print Gallery, Berkeley, CA. Attended Vermont Studio Center, 2010 and awarded Dedalus Foundation Full fellowship award. 2013 commission "Imagery Wine Label", due out in 2014. 2012 "Neiman Marcus permanent collect", Walnut Creek,CA. 

Emily Witt, Non-fiction; Brooklyn, NY – “I have written articles, essays, and reviews for The New York Times, n+1, The Nation, The New Republic, Elle, New York, The London Review of Books and many other publications. I have also worked as a staff writer at The New York Observer and the Miami New Times, where I was a finalist for a Livingston Award and received an honorable mention for the White House Correspondents’ Association Edgar A. Poe award. My writing has been included in Best American Travel Writing and Say What You Mean: The n+1 Anthology.
     “I have a BA from Brown University, Master’s degrees from Cambridge and Columbia University Graduate School of Journalism and I was the recipient of a Fulbright fellowship to Mozambique.”