Jane Wong Chosen as the 2017 James W. Ray Distinguished Artist

Submitted by Brian Reed on
media credit: Karen Wennerstrom

UW English Department alum Jane Wong (Ph.D 2016) has been named as the 2017 James W. Ray Distinguished Artist by the Artist Trust | Frye Art Museum Consortium.

Currently in its fourth year, the James W. Ray Distinguished Artist Award of $50,000 is the largest cash grant available to Washington State artists and recognizes artists in all disciplines whose work demonstrates exceptional originality and is intended to advance the creative work of an outstanding individual artist. The evaluation of applications and selection of recipients was performed by a multi-disciplinary panel of five arts professionals.

Jane Wong is a poet, essayist, and, as of Fall 2017, an assistant professor at Western Washington University. The author of Overpour (Action Books, 2016), she is invested in public scholarship; her project on the poetics of haunting in Asian American poetry appeared as a TEDx talk and a multimedia website. Wong’s writing seeks to name forgotten histories and address the intergenerational impacts of migration and violence.

Earlier this year, Wong was selected as the Graduate Medalist in the Humanities, an award given each year to the most exceptional graduate student in the Humanities Division at the University of Washington. She defended her dissertation in Fall 2016; its title is "Going Toward the Ghost: The Poetics of Haunting in Contemporary Asian American Poetry."