announcing : hcx

we are delighted to announce the forthcoming publication of hcx — the 10th number in the hand-made journal that launched harlequin creature 10 years ago. this will also be our last publication. hcx includes contributions from 10 poets, artists, & musicians. eight unique print projects will come together in a single encasement in an edition of 100 copies.

read contributor bios below, and pre-order a copy by clicking here. by purchasing your copy now, you help us to cover production costs, and reserve your own limited edition copy! 

hcx editorial is ian mclellan davis, meghan forbes, sherese francis, hannah pröbsting

allia abdullah-matta is a poet and Professor of English at CUNY LaGuardia, where she teaches composition, literature, creative writing, and Women, Gender, and Sexuality Studies courses (WGS). She writes about the culture, and history of Black women and explores the presence of Black bodies and voices in fine art and poetry. She was the co-recipient of the The Jerome Lowell DeJur Prize in Poetry (2018) from The City College of New York (CCNY). She has featured at the Women Writers in Bloom Poetry Salon Anniversary (2017), for Newtown Literary at the NYC Poetry Festival (2017), and the Poets & Writers Cross Cultural Reading (2018), and for No Dear Magazine Poets Who Love Poets (2018). Her poetry has been published in Newtown Literary, Promethean, Marsh Hawk Review, Mom Egg Review Vox, Global City Review, and the Jam Journal Issue of Push/Pull.

photo credit Jamil Smith

Dubravka Ugresic is one of Europe’s most distinctive novelists and essayists.

Following degrees in Comparative and Russian Literature, Ugresic worked for many years at the University of Zagreb’s Institute for Theory of Literature, successfully pursuing parallel careers as both a writer and as a scholar. In 1991, when war broke out in the former Yugoslavia, Ugresic took a firm anti-war stance, critically dissecting retrograde Croatian and Serbian nationalism, the stupidity and criminality of war, and in the process became a target for nationalist journalists, politicians and fellow writers. Subjected to prolonged public ostracism and persistent media harassment, she left Croatia in 1993. She therefore positions herself as a “transnational” or rather a “post-national” writer and champions the right of authors not to recognize or respect ethnic and national borders, especially in cases where these are being imposed by force, as they are in her case.

Her books—which includes seven books of fiction and seven essay collections—have been translated into thirty languages. She is the winner of several major literary prizes: Austrian State Prize for European Literature 1998; finalist of Man Booker International Prize 2009; Jean Améry Essay Prize, awarded for her essayistic work as a whole, 2012; Vilenica Prize 2016; while Karaoke Culture was a finalist for the National Book Critics Circle Award for Criticism 2011. She is the winner of the 2016 Neustadt International Prize for Literature, which is often referred to as the American Nobel. Ugresic lives in Amsterdam.

photo credit Judith Jockel

Hiromi Kiba is a Queens-based interdisciplinary artist, originally from Japan. Her poetry performances in collaboration with various artists utilize elements of spoken words, light, and sound, to create environments that explore memory in relation to her experience of music and dance. After 8 years of working for USPS, she returned to full-time dancing: treating the experience of live music as an occupation, seeking out performances almost every night of the week, and experiencing the way in which music affects spiritual and mental health on the deepest levels. Kiba has released two cassette tapes of her recent projects, presented by mh PROJECT nyc. She is a contributor of “Music and Spirituality” column to Love Injection fanzine. Kiba received her MFA in new form from The City College of New York and BFA in painting from School of Visual Arts.

photo credit Guarionex Rodrigues Jr.

Ian Davis (b. 1989) is a composer and guitarist based in New York City. His work is informed by folk music, canon, counterpoint, works by children, graph notation, low-fidelity, and seemingly simple and transparent structural devices. 

photo credit Katie Vogel

JP Howard is an educator, literary activist, curator and community builder. Her debut poetry collection, SAY/MIRROR (The Operating System)was a Lambda Literary Award finalist. She is also the author of bury your love poems here (Belladonna*) and co-editor of Sinister Wisdom Journal Black Lesbians–We Are the Revolution!  JP was a featured author in Lambda Literary’s LGBTQ Writers in Schools program and was a Split this Rock Freedom Plow Award for Poetry & Activism finalist. JP is featured in the Lesbian Poet Trading Card Series from Headmistress Press and has received fellowships and grants from Cave Canem, VONA, Lambda Literary, and Brooklyn Arts Council. She curates Women Writers in Bloom Poetry Salon. Her poetry and essays have appeared in The Slowdown  podcast, Academy of American Poets, Anomaly, Apogee Journal, The Feminist Wire, Split this Rock, Muzzle Magazine, and The Best American Poetry Blog, amongst others.JP’s poetry is widely anthologized. She is a general Poetry Editor for Women’s Studies Quarterly and Editor-At-Large of Mom Egg Review VOX online. 

photo credit Nivea Castro

Kelani Abass (b. 1979) studied at the Yaba College of Technology, Lagos, graduating in painting with distinction. He has taken part in several residencies and workshops including Malt Air, Maltfabrikken, Ebeltoft, Denmark, 2020, Headlands Center for the Arts, San-Francisco, California, 2018, Summer Academy of Fine Art, Salzburg, Austria, 2014,  History/Matter, Centre for contemporary Art, Lagos, Nigeria. 2012.

Kelani has been selected to present his work at the forth coming 5th International Biennale Casablanca. 

He has won several awards and prizes including First prize in painting of the Caterina De Medici/3rd Black Heritage Prize (2010).

His recent body of work explore the importance of material inheritance and interrogate how past and present coalesce. He attempt to make a statement of the future that concedes the interdependence of different moments, investigating the possibilities inherent in painting, photography and printing using archival materials to highlight personal stories against the background of social and political events which also engage time and memory.

Recent solo exhibitions include ‘IRANTI, 31 project, Paris, France, 2020’ ‘[Re:] Entanglements, Contemporary Art and Colonial Archives’, National Museum Lagos. 2019 ‘if I could save time’, Centre for Contemporary Art, Lagos. 2016, ‘Aso Igba’ Art Clip Africa, Lagos. 2016, ‘Asiko’ Centre for Contemporary Art, Lagos (2013); ‘Man and Machine’ Omenka Gallery, Lagos (2011) and ‘Paradigm Shift’ Mydrim Gallery, Lagos (2009).

As a daughter of mixed heritage, Mexican-American cellist, Laura Cetilia is at home with in-betweenness, straddling the worlds of performer / composer, acoustic / electronic and traditional / experimental sound practices. Her music has been described as “unorthodox loveliness” (Boston Globe) and hailed as “alternately penetrating and atmospheric” (Sequenza 21). Her compositions have been played by ensembles such as Wet Ink, HereNowHear, tacet(i), Mivos Quartet, S.E.M. Ensemble, Splinter Reeds, Dog Star Orchestra,, Verdant Vibes, LCollective, The Furies, and violinist Erik Carlson. She has created site-specific sound installations for the Bennington Museum and Ben Ari Museum for Contemporary Art. She has curated for the performance series ctrl+alt+repeat, ars subtilior, public offering, durational concerts at RISD museum, and for the Estuary Ltd. imprint. The Grove Dictionary of American Music describes her electroacoustic duo Mem1 as a “complex cybernetic entity” that “understands its music as a feedback loop between the past and present.” In the performer / composer collective Ordinary Affects she has collaborated with, commissioned and premiered works by composers such as Alvin Lucier, Christian Wolff, Michael Pisaro, Jürg Frey, Eva-Maria Houben, and Magnus Granberg. She is currently pursuing her D.M.A. in Music Composition at Cornell University and is a proud mother of one.

photo credit Mark Cetilia

Prajna Desai moves across art history, fiction, and translation, weaving through archives and speculative theories drawn from photography, architecture, and print culture. She has spent the last decade as a writer and teacher of cultural histories of twentieth century Asia, occasionally channelling projects through curatorial collaboration. She lives and works in Mumbai.

artist credit: rehaan engineer. drawing. 2019

Sherese Francis is a Queens, NY-based, Afro-Caribbean-American (Barbados and Dominica) poet, editor, interdisciplinary artist, workshop facilitator, and literary curator of the mobile library project, J. Expressions. She has published work in various publications including Furious Flower, Obsidian Lit, Rootwork Journal, Spoken Black Girl, The Operating System, Cosmonauts Avenue, No Dear, Apex Magazine, Bone Bouquet, African Voices, Newtown Literary, and Free Verse. Additionally, she has published three chapbooks, Lucy’s Bone Scrolls (Three Legged Elephant) and Variations on Sett/ling Seed/ling (Harlequin Creature), and Recycling a Why That Rules Over My Sacred Sight (DoubleCross Press). Besides her publications, she has had work featured in exhibitions from The Lit Exhibit, NY Live Arts, Queens Public Library, York College Arts Gallery, Jamaica Center for Arts & Learning, and Baxter St Camera Club.

photo credit Rosalyn Fernandez

Vlad Beronja is a scholar, translator, and occasional bookmaker and artist, currently working as an Assistant Professor of Slavic and Eurasian Studies at the University of Texas at Austin. His scholarly work examines critical memorial and archival practices in postsocialist literary and visual culture, with a focus on the former Yugoslavia. He is a co-editor of a volume Post-Yugoslav Constellations: Archive, Memory, and Trauma in Bosnian, Croatian, and Serbian Literature and Culture (2016) and has published articles, book reviews, and translations in a variety of journals, including The Journal of Graphic Novels and ComicsSlavic and East European JournalInTranslation,and Fluminensia. As an artist and bookmaker, he is interested in the aesthetic potential of the traditional book form to cross media boundaries and accommodate alternative reading practices that foreground non-verbal and haptic experiences.

Both his scholarly and artistic work are inflected by cultural dislocation, national and ethnic hybridity, and queerness.

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