The New Social Environment#243

Richard Kraft with Mónica de la Torre


1 p.m. Eastern / 10 a.m. Pacific

Artist Richard Kraft joins poet and translator Mónica de la Torre for a conversation on Richard’s newest book project “It Is What It Is” (Siglio Press, 2021). We’ll conclude with a poetry reading from Peter Gizzi.

To celebrate our participation in Printed Matter’s Virtual Art Book Fair, we’ve organized a week of NSE programming highlighting the many voices involved in art books and publishing. From February 24-28, you can view our virtual table and enjoy all the fair has to offer here.


In this talk

Richard Kraft

Artist Richard Kraft poses in front of one of his pieces called “Wing”  (Scott Smeltzer)
Photo by Scott Smeltzer
An artist whose multidisciplinary works often use public spaces as well as converse with the literary. Many of his works use language, book pages, and appropriated narratives as material. He has had numerous group and solo gallery shows, including at Charlie James Gallery, LA Louver, and Rosamund Felsen, the Portland Art Museum, the Laguna Art Museum, Bemis Center for Contemporary Art, and Printed Matter, among others. 100 Walkers, West Hollywood, commissioned by The City of West Hollywood for its thirtieth year celebrations, won a Year in Review Award from Americans for the Arts/Public Art Network. Kraft was born and raised in London and now lives in Los Angeles and New York.

Mónica de la Torre

A photo of poet and writer Mónica de la Torre in front of bookshelves.
Bruce Pearson
Author of six books of poetry of which the most recent is Repetition Nineteen, published by Nightboat Books in the spring of 2020. Others include The Happy End/All Welcome—a riff on a riff on Kafka’s Amerika— as well as Public Domain. Born and raised in Mexico City, she has lived in NYC since mid-’90s and has published several books in Spanish, including Taller de Taquimecanografía, written jointly with the eponymous women’s collective she formed with Gabriela Jauregui, Laureana Toledo, and the late Aura Estrada. She teaches poetry at Brooklyn College and in the Bard MFA program. Recent work appears in Granta 151: Membranes and The Believer. The anthology Women in Concrete Poetry 1959–1979, co-edited with Alex Balgiu, is just out from Primary Information.

The Rail has a tradition of ending our conversations with a poem, and today we’re fortunate to have Peter Gizzi reading.

Peter Gizzi

Peter Gizzi
Courtesy of Peter Gizzi
The author of eight collections of poetry, most recently, Now It’s Dark, and Archeophonics (Finalist for 2016 The National Book Award). His honors include fellowships from The Rex Foundation, The Howard Foundation, The Foundation for Contemporary Arts, and the Guggenheim Foundation. He works at the University of Massachusetts, Amherst.

How to join

💻 This event will be held over ZOOM. We’ll send you a link to join this event after you register. Download and install ZOOM for desktop or mobile devices

🕰 Please arrive 5-10mins in advance to ensure you’re connected and ready to go.

🎧 We recommend viewing with headphones. It is easier to hear people and will be easier for you to ask a question, should you decide.

🗝 Accessibility: Closed-captioning in English will be available during the event. Our Q&A will be conducted using Zoom’s chat function, with the option to voice your question or have our staff read it.

📺 Videos of past events can be viewed on events page at

👾 Technical difficulties

We work hard to make sure this is easy and enjoyable for everyone, but technology is not always kind. If you are not happy with the experience, we’ll happily refund any donation you made. We just ask that you let us know how we could have made the experience better for you.

💌 Questions/feedback? Let us know how we can make this experience better [email protected]