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Oana Avasilichioaei is a poet, translator, and editor whose poetry collections include We, Beasts (winner of the Quebec Writers’ Federation’s A.M. Klein Prize for Poetry) and feria: a poempark.
Exploring the infinite social, political, intimate possibilities of language, Oana Avasilichioaei’s work traverses textual architecture, orality and multilingualism, translation and collaboration, and geography and public space. In recent years, Avasilichioaei has also been mapping poetry into performative sound work (oanalab.com).
Born in Romania and living in Montreal, Canada, she has translated poetry and prose from Romanian (Nichita Stanescu’s Occupational Sickness and the work of Paul Celan) and from French (Louise Cotnoir’s The Islands, Daniel Canty’s Wigrum, and Bertrand Laverdure’s Universal Bureau of Copyrights).
Avasilichioaei has edited several magazine issues, including the Poetry in Translation from Quebec issue of Aufgabe (New York, 2013) and the Mapping issue of Dandelion (Calgary, 2011). Current projects include Thresholds, which transposes some of the work in Limbinal into sound performances and immersive installations, as well as a collaborative translation with Ingrid Pam Dick of Suzanne Leblanc’s The House as P’s Thinking, in 2015.
Also see Avasilichioaei’s website, OanaLab.com.
October 2017 : A GG nomination for In Search of New Babylon!
August 2016 : Oana Avasilichioaei on the East Coast this September!
January 2016 : Best of 2015
September 2015 : Our windiest book yet has just blown in
January 2015 : Announcement: New Books for Spring 2015!
January 2015 : Three Talon Poets in “Canada and Beyond” Periodical
May 2014 : We Believe in Wigrum
January 2014 : New Year, New Logo
December 2013 : Wigrum Found in the Glasgow Review of Books & Geist Magazine
October 2013 : Launched! Daniel Canty's Wigrum in Brooklyn, NY
October 2013 : A Collaborative Affair: Wigrum Launch in Montreal
October 2013 : Talon Authors Unite at WORD Vancouver
September 2013 : Daniel Canty To Launch Wigrum in Montreal, Toronto, and Vancouver!
QUOTES OF NOTELimbinal
“… two books in one, with a portfolio of colour photographs in the middle. The Romanian-born Montreal poet has an instinctive interest in boundaries. … It is heavily theorized and works brilliantly with formatting and fonts, but remains curiously detached, even in the love poems. The photographs that both join and divide the book illustrate the concepts more powerfully than the poems of the first part. … It takes courage to juxtapose one’s own writing with such giants [as Paul Celan and Nelly Sachs]. She carries it off honourably.”
– Montreal Review of Books
“Oana’s layout activates the border between pages. A textless white line materializes from the fold. This line is not passive. … For Oana, the poetic frame is photographic by way of translation. … To translate is to convert one form into another form, life to image, image to language, language to language. To translate is process, again, the liminal (Limbinal) state, which energizes and prepares for metamorphosis. Oana translates in flux, words change with the speed of thought …”
– Resonance Reading Series Archives
“_Limbinal_ is full of wonder, of questions, of beautiful language and imagery. It’s more than I can possibly know or write about. Which is the best kind of book there is.”
– Amanda Earl
“Methodologically social, and dialogic in spirit, the different works here collected under the rubric of Limbinal offer powerful experiences of inhabitation. As a physical presence, one is always central to the spaces one moves through, even when they are marginal or ostensibly minor. Meanwhile, in one’s thinking, one often finds oneself at a remove, detached and ‘out of place.’ For Oana Avasilichioaei, this simultaneously central and marginal location is not that of the exile or alienated (though she readily acknowledges such experience); rather she discovers that borders, edges, margins, peripheries, and outskirts bind us to our world. From them, we generate our most meaningful commitments. Limbinal is, finally, a book of commitments – to the real, to distant intimacies, to immediate ideas, and to possibility. The result is stunning.” – Lyn Hejinian
“Limbinal tenaciously delineates and explores the zone(s) encountered when the poetic imagination meets the materiality of its practice. The writing is boundary walking, blindfolded, and traumatized that ‘this is the moment to speak.’ And the place to speak. The site of Avasilichioaei’s moment buzzes with the anxiety of political, historical, linguistic, and textual boundaries. The contact zone in these exquisite poems is the site of interrogation, a tension between words and mouth, spectacle and spectator, photo and text, invention and translation. Limbinal goes out on a limb and refuses to perform an easy answer.”
– Fred Wah
“Avasilichioaei is an experimentalist … [her] work is sophisticated, challenging, and transgressive, yet well worth the effort.”
– Elena Wolff
We gratefully acknowledge the financial support of the Canada Council for the Arts; the Government of Canada through the Canada Book Fund (CBF); and the Province of British Columbia through the British Columbia Arts Council for our publishing activities.