Amy Catanzano

Amy Catanzano

Associate Professor of English in Creative Writing
Co-Director, Writers Reading Series

Amy CatanzanoM.F.A. Iowa Writers’ Workshop, University of Iowa


Official Author’s Website

Amy Catanzano is a poet and transmedia artist who explores the intersections of literature, science, and the arts. She publishes poetry and experimental fiction, poetic theory, and multimodal literature that challenges literary conventions by applying scientific innovation to creative and scholarly practice. An associate professor of English and the poet-in-residence at Wake Forest University, she often collaborates with scientists and visits scientific research centers for her projects. These have included CERN, where she was a research artist with the ATLAS Experiment at the Large Hadron Collider, and the Simons Center for Geometry and Physics, where she was the inaugural poet-in-residence. She is the author of three books, including Starlight in Two Million: A Neo-Scientific Novella (2014), recipient of the Noemi Press Book Award in Fiction, and Multiversal (2009), recipient of the PEN USA Literary Award in Poetry. Recent projects include World Lines: A Quantum Supercomputer Poem (2018-present), featured by APS Physics and other publications, and the digital poem, Wavicles (2017), exhibited in the 3D Poetry Editor international group show, The Gravity of Words. She holds an MFA from the Iowa Writers’ Workshop at the University of Iowa.


Poetry, poetics, and literary theory

Intergenre and experimental prose

Transmedia, interdisciplinary, and multimodal poetry 

The intersections of poetry, science, and the arts

Quantum theory, quantum computing, particle physics, astrophysics, and ‘pataphysics

The literary and artistic subcultures of the avant-garde


World Lines: A Quantum Supercomputer Poem. Long Island: Simons Center for Geometry and Physics, Stony Brook University, 2018. 

Wavicles: A Digital Poem. Amsterdam/Oslo: 3D Poetry Editor Exhibition, The Gravity of Words, 2017.

Let There Be Love. Calgary: Spacecraft Press, 2015.

Starlight in Two Million: A Neo-Scientific Novella. Blacksburg: Noemi Press, 2014. Recipient, Noemi Press Book Award in Fiction from Noemi Press. 

Multiversal. New York City: Fordham University Press, 2009. Recipient, PEN USA Literary Award in Poetry from PEN Center USA. Recipient, Poets Out Loud Prize from Fordham University Press.

iEpiphany. New York City/Boulder: Erudite Fangs Editions, 2008.

the heartbeat is a fractal. Tokyo/Toronto: Ahadada Books, 2008.

Amy Catanzano’s creative work and essays in poetic theory appear in the following publications, among others: American Letters and CommentaryPoems and Poetics, Jacket2, La VaguePerfect WaveAufgabe, Colorado Review, Conjunctions, The Dark Energy Survey: The Story of A Cosmological Experiment, Denver Quarterly, Fence Magazine, Interim, Laurel Review, New American Writing, Poetbook: An Illuminated Project, Tarpaulin Sky Journal, Volt: A Journal of the Arts, #Nodes: Entangling Science and Humanities, Best of Fence Magazine, and Hydrogen Jukebox: 40 Years of (Dis)embodied Poetics at Naropa University.


Article: “The quantum poet,” Symmetry Magazine

Conference convener: Entanglements: A Conference on the Intersections of Poetry, Science, and the Arts

Interview: “Quantum understanding in the works of Amy Catanzano,” SciArt Magazine

Podcast: “The Poetry of the Dark Energy Survey,” 365 Days of Astronomy

Article: “Poetry takes on quantum physics,” Physics

Article: “Artist explains quantum physics through poetry,” The Next Web

Performance (collaboration): “At the Edge of the Abyss: A Danced Poem” at Entanglements

Interview: “Impossible poems at invisible scales,” Jacket2

Review: “Starlight in Two Million: A Neo-Scientific Novella,” Rain Taxi

Feature: “Commentary Series in Quantum Poetics,” Jacket2 


W.C. Archie Endowed Fund for Faculty Excellence Award in support of a collaborative project and research on the Dark Energy Spectroscopic Instrument survey (DESI) and travel to Tucson, Arizona, 2021.

Reynolds Research Leave Award in support of research and creative projects, 2020-2021.

Reynolda Conference Award from the Wake Forest Humanities Institute and Reynolda House Museum of American Art, funded by a grant from the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, to convene Entanglements: A Conference on the Intersections of Poetry, Science, and the Arts, 2018.

W.C. Archie Endowed Fund for Faculty Excellence Award in support of research on the Dark Energy Survey and travel to the Cerro-Tololo Inter-American Observatory in Chile, 2018.

Summer Research Award in support of a book manuscript on poetry and science, 2018.

Dunn-Riley Faculty Development Award in support of travel to the annual conference of the Society for Literature, Science, and the Arts in Toronto, 2018.

W.C. Archie Endowed Fund for Faculty Excellence Award in support of research at CERN in Switzerland, 2016.

Junior Research Leave Award, 2016.


Amy Catanzano is an associate professor of English and the poet-in-residence at Wake Forest University in North Carolina. Prior to Wake Forest, she taught at Naropa University in the Jack Kerouac School of Disembodied Poetics in Boulder, Chatham University in Pittsburgh, Metropolitan State University of Denver, and the University of Iowa. She has been a guest faculty member at the Weatherspoon Art Museum, the Naropa Summer Writing Program, and the North Carolina Writers’ Network. She has taught graduate and undergraduate courses in creative writing, literature, poetics, and experimental artistic practice. At Wake Forest, she teaches poetry and poetics in graduate workshops in the MA Literary Studies program and undergraduate workshops in the Creative Writing minor. Her courses offer students creative and critical engagements with poetic craft, literary theory, and creative process, providing practical grounding and an exploratory space in which to read and write. Working from innovative frameworks and principles in quantum poetics, her pedagogy engages an expansive range of literary modes including investigative poetry, reality and imagination studies, transmedia and digital poetry, experimental prose, transdisciplinary and multimodal literature, installation poetry, language poetry, conceptual writing, political and activist writing, collaboration, performance, mythopoetics, aleatoric process, visual poetry, sound poetry, and more. Through writing exercises, discussions of student writing, written feedback, reading and viewing materials, and attendance to events with visiting authors, students develop as writers and readers while examining the material, aesthetic, theoretical, transpersonal, and cultural implications of working with language in an artistic practice. She has mentored students who have gone on to livelihoods in writing, teaching, art making, publishing, and more as well as MFA and PhD programs at the Iowa Writers’ Workshop, University of Denver, Brooklyn College, University of Notre Dame, Pratt Institute, the European Graduate School, and elsewhere.

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