Chicago performance artist, poet and scholar, Rey Andújar is scheduled to appear at the Columbia Library, 624 S. Michigan, on Thursday, April 25, 7 – 9 p.m. What he’ll actually do is anyone’s guess, according to Columbia College instructor, Jesus Macarena-Avila. In theory, Dr. Andújar will present a lecture on Dominican Poetry to Macarena-Avila’s Caribbean Art, Literature and Music class and the public. In practice, Macarena-Avila says, “It could be a lecture, a performance, or something completely unexpected.”
Macarena-Avila says. “It could be a performance based on poetic literature inspired by Buddhism or street urban culture. With Dr. Andújar, expect the unexpected. It can open a discussion on the contemporary literary pathways that Dominican writers are exploring.” The program is co-sponsored by the Columbia Library, and Illinois Latino Voice, a local social media organization focused on Latina/o/x community affairs and Poesia en Abril, a program initiated by Contratiempo, a local literary journal focused on Latin American writers and Latina/o/x cultural criticism.
Dr. Andújar is a true Renaissance man. He is the author of several award-winning works of fiction, including Saturnalia, a short story collection that captured the Ultramar Literature Prize NYC in 2010, Candela, a novel, won the PR Pen Club Awards in 2009, and Amorcidio, a short story collection, was conferred the FIL-Santo Domingo Fiction Award in 2006. Dr. Andújar is also Artistic Associate at Aguijón Theater, where he wrote and performed the critically-acclaimed play, Adverses. His 2006 performance work Ciudadano Cero was part of the prestigious Festival Internacional de Teatro Santo Domingo. Another performance piece, Antípoda, was presented in Santo Domingo, Paris, and various U.S. cities and Mexico.
Dr. Andújar was born in the Dominican Republic, lives in Chicago, and teaches Latin American History and Literature at Governors State University. He holds a PhD in Caribbean Literature and Philosophy. His research and performances explore the connection between body, language and literature. He is inspired by a multitude of sources: Caribbean traditions, mediation, and urban culture has influenced his performances.
Macarena-Avila uses his class to bring prominent individuals and scholars on Caribbean, Latin American and Latina/o/x art, literature, music and crossing over to other fields of study such as cultural anthropology to Columbia. Following Dr. Andújar’s presentation, there will be a Q&A session and book signing of Saturnalia. Light Cafecito refreshments will be served.