We are pleased to announce the winners of the 2018 “Looking Glass Ekphrastic Poetry Contest,” held in partnership with the Cornell Art Museum at Old School Square.

Five cash prizes and five honorable mentions were selected by our distinguished contest judge, poet, Stephen Gibson. First Place award is $100, and four awards for 2nd, 3rd, 4th, and 5th place will receive $25.00 each. The winners are:

FIRST PLACE“The Muses” by Linda Flaherty Haltmaier

SECOND PLACE“phantoms” by Dmitry Blizniuk

THIRD PLACE“Elsa’s Staircase” by Jen Karetnick

FOURTH PLACE“French Existentialist Bulldog” by Stefan David Martin

FIFTH PLACE“Covering Up” by Blake Mason

Five HONORABLE MENTIONS were selected and recognized:
Personified Lightness” by Melissa Renaud;
The Press of Light” by Paul Weigel;
So, Glitzy Gals” by Erika Michael;
Muse” by Feby Joseph, and
Façade for Siri” by Jennifer Greenberg.

About the contest, Stephen Gibson said, “Judging this year’s contest was a delight, and, again, congratulations to these fine poets and to all of those poets who submitted their works, and thanks also to the artists for sharing their wonderful glass creations.”

The works in the Looking Glass exhibition delved into ways in which visual artists approach ideas of reflection and perception. The unique artworks on display allow viewers to see themselves in the works and to “find a sense of belonging in the Cornell Art Museum.” We were pleased to see that poets visited the museum locally and virtually including entries from 25 different states and 13 foreign countries, including Kharkov, Ukraine; Nanaimo, British Columbia, Canada; and Mumbai, India, said Festival Director, Susan R. Williamson.

Poems were inspired by the following images/items from the Looking Glass exhibit at The Cornell Museum of Art at Old School Square.

“Muse” by Jeremy Penn
“Portrait of Joan Agajanian Quinn” by Andrew Logan
“Facade” by Elle Schorr
“Invisible Quilt” by Peter Symons
“Outer Reflection” by Lilibeth Rasmussen
“One Day You’ll be Mine” by Graeme Messer
“Dog Mirror” by Liliana Porter
“Five Squares” by Chul-Hyun Awn

Ekphrastic Poems come from the poetic tradition of taking inspiration from objects and works of art known as “ekphrasis” from the Greek. These may include literal descriptions of a work of art, the poet´s mood in response to a work of art, metaphorical associations inspired by a work of art, or personal memories about a work of art.

The Contest Judge is Stephen Gibson, author of seven poetry collections, most recently, Self-Portrait in a Door-Length Mirror, winner of the 2017 Miller Williams Prize (Univ. of Arkansas Press), selected by Billy Collins. His poetry and fiction have appeared in such journals as American Arts Quarterly, Gargoyle, The Georgia Review, The Gettysburg Review, North American Review, The Paris Review, Pleiades, Poetry, River Styx, The Sewanee Review, Shenandoah, The Southern Review, and The Yale Review among others. He taught for thirty-two years at the Belle Glade campus of Palm Beach State College.

Results Announced: April 2018 is National Poetry Month and we congratulate and applaud the artists, the winners, and all the poets who submitted poems for their interest “in,” passion “for,” and pursuit “of” their art and their poems.

The Cornell Art Museum at Old School Square is open to the public, Tuesday – Saturday, 10am – 5pm, Sunday, 1pm – 5pm. $8 (general); $5 (seniors 65+ and students with ID); free for children under 12, Old School Square members and Veterans; free for Florida residents on Sundays.

*Images courtesy the Cornell Art Museum at Old School Square and artist as noted above.