Imtiaz Dharker is Artist in Residence for Chester Literature Festival

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Imtiaz Dharker is Artist in Residence for Chester Literature Festival

Chester Literature Festival kicked off at the weekend, over 120 events will be staged at the award-winning arts centre until 30 November.

This year the acclaimed multi award-winning poet, filmmaker and artist Imtiaz Dharker joins Storyhouse as artist in residence with her brand-new striking poem entitled Storyhouse: inspired by Dharker's visit to the building and the community she met there.

The poem is emblazoned across Storyhouse's spaces alongside stunning hand-drawn illustrations. It explores shelter, hope and rebirth, forgiveness and the strength that can be found with a sense of community and belonging.

Storyhouse's former artists in residence include Ted Hughes winner Hollie McNish and winner of the PEN Pinter prize Lemn Sissay MBE.

Imtiaz Dharker said:

Storyhouse is more than a library, reading room, cinema, theatre, café. For the thousands who walk through its doors, it is a welcoming space, a safe haven, a meeting-place for all kinds of unexpected stories. I see it as a huge breathing book, alive with possibilities, ready to tell you a new story, or rewrite an old one, every time you turn a corner or a page

Set to be installed for a year, verses from Dharker's poem alongside her illustrations will be installed on walls, doors, staircases, mirrors, windows, balconies and ceilings. Dharker will appear at the festival on Friday 22 November, she will be joined by celebrated and emerging artists including former poet Laureate Carol Ann Duffy.

Imtiaz Dharker is a poet, artist and video film-maker. She was awarded the Queen's Gold Medal for Poetry in 2014. A Fellow of the Royal Society of Literature, she has been Poet in Residence at Cambridge University Library and has worked on several projects across art forms in Leeds, Newcastle and Hull, as well as the Archives of St Paul's Cathedral. Her six collections include Over the Moon and the latest, Luck Is the Hook, all published by Bloodaxe Books UK, and her poems have been broadcast widely on BBC Radio 3 and 4 as well as the BBC World Service. She has had eleven solo exhibitions of drawings around the world, and scripts and directs video films, many of them for non-government organisations working in the area of shelter, education and health for women and children in India

All of Dharker's installations can be viewed for free, and no booking is necessary.

Other artists appearing at the Chester Literature Festival include Armistead Maupin, last year's artist in residence Lemn Sissay, Nadiya Hussain, Michael Morpurgo, Roger McGough, Benjamin Zephaniah and many more, with an incredible 128 events across the three weeks of the festival.

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