Etel Adnan Awarded the 2020 Griffin International Poetry Prize for “Time”
Published by Night Boat Books and translated from French by Sarah Riggs
Galerie Lelong & Co., New York, congratulates Etel Adnan, winner of the 2020 Griffin International Poetry Prize. Apart from being an accomplished artist, Adnan was first an author of poetry and prose, often addressing and protesting against the turmoil of the Vietnam War and the Lebanese Civil War. In her art practice, Adnan's career encompasses a wide range of media—including painting, drawing, tapestry, film, ceramics, and leporello artist books—as it does traditions and locations.
“‘I say that I’m not afraid/of dying because I haven’t/ yet had the experience/ of death’ writes Etel Adnan in the opening poem to Time. What is astonishing here is how she manages to give weariness its own relentless energy. We are pulled quickly through this collection – each poem, only a breath, a small measure of the time that Adnan is counting. Every breath is considered, measured, observant – perceiving even ‘a crack in the/ texture of the day.’ If Adnan is correct and ‘writing comes from a dialogue/ with time’ then this is a conversation the world should be leaning into, listening to a writer who has earned every right to be listened to.”