Title
Poet
Location
Brooklyn, New York
Age
58 at time of award
Deceased
September 3, 2017
Area of Focus
Poetry
Published July 1, 1985

About John's Work

John Ashbery is best known as a poet, but he is also an art critic, a playwright, and a translator.

His poetry is formally inventive, exhibiting a brilliant use of language, wit, technical skill, and imagination.  He is the author of over twenty books of poetry, including April Galleons (1987), Flow Chart (1991), Hotel Lautréamont (1992), And the Stars Were Shining (1993), Can You Hear, Bird (1995), Wakefulness (1998), and Chinese Whispers (2002).  He also published a novel, a collection of plays, a volume of art criticism, Reported Sightings: Art Chronicles, 1957-1987 (1989), and a set of essays exploring the lives and work of six writers with insights about legacy and dignity of writing, Other Traditions: the Charles Eliot Norton Lectures (2000). 

Biography

Ashbery lived in France from 1955 to 1965, first as a Fulbright Fellow and later as an art critic for the International Herald Tribune.  He returned to New York to become the executive editor of Art News, a position he held until 1972.  He is a former chancellor of the Academy of American Poets and is currently the Charles P. Stevenson, Jr., Professor of Languages and Literature at Bard College. 

Ashbery received a B.A. (1949) from Harvard University and an M.A. (1951) from Columbia University.

Updated January 2005.

Select News Coverage of John Ashbery
September 6, 2017
"John Ashbery’s Whisper Out of Time"
The New Yorker
John Ashbery , 1985 MacArthur Fellow
Ben Lerner, 2015 MacArthur Fellow
September 4, 2017
"Acclaimed Poet John Ashbery Dies At 90"
NPR
John Ashbery , 1985 MacArthur Fellow
September 3, 2017
"John Ashbery Is Dead at 90; a Poetic Voice Often Echoed, Never Matched"
The New York Times
John Ashbery , 1985 MacArthur Fellow
September 3, 2017
"John Ashbery, Esteemed and Inventive Poet, Dies at 90"
PBS NewsHour
John Ashbery , 1985 MacArthur Fellow
June 2, 2015
"American Snipper"
The New Yorker
John Ashbery , 1985 MacArthur Fellow
May 22, 2015
"When John Ashbery Was New York’s Art Critic"
Vulture
John Ashbery , 1985 MacArthur Fellow
May 7, 2015
"John Ashbery: By the Book"
The New York Times
John Ashbery , 1985 MacArthur Fellow
View all news
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