Each month Rochford Street Review will be featuring an artist, whose work will appear on the cover of the issue, and a writer, whose work will be highlighted throughout the issue. The featured artist concept kicked off in Issue 13 with Sheila Murphy and is continued in Issue 14 with Cecilia White. Issue 14 also features Anna Couani, Rochford Street Review‘s first featured writer.
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Anna Couani is a Sydney teacher, writer and visual artist and has degrees in architecture, art education and TESOL. She also studied Fine Arts, painting (Western & Chinese), video production, photography, sculpture, printmaking and music. She worked as an art teacher for 30 years, mostly in Intensive English Centres in Sydney and more recently for 10 years, as an ESL teacher in high school. She also gave adult creative writing classes at Parramatta TAFE and Bankstown Library.
Small press work
In the 1970’s, Anna joined Ken Bolton on the small literary magazine, Magic Sam and they subsequently established Sea Cruise Books. She co-edited two Island in the Sun prose anthologies with Damien White, Telling Ways an anthology of experimental women’s writing with Sneja Gunew, Minute to Midnight anthology of writing on peace with Red Spark Press. In 2012, she edited a Cordite chapbook, Falling Angels. Anna has also designed covers and produced the artwork for numerous publications.
Anna was a founding member of the Sydney Poets Union and the No Regrets women writers group that ran 1978-92. With her husband, sculptor Hilik Mirankar, she established The Shop Gallery in 2014 in a building that was previously a 2nd hand bookshop, a space for artists to hire and run their own exhibitions.
- 2015 group show at the opening of The Shop Gallery
- 2014-15 exhibitions in Hong Kong of postcard collaborations
- Since 2011, participated in the postcard collaborations, Macao-Elsewhere and Home and from 2014, in a new collaboration called Somewhere. These postcards are visible at:
- 1970’s group shows at The John Ogburn Studio
Published Books of poetry and prose
- 2012 Small Wonders published by Flying Islands Books, Macao
- 1996-2000 The Western Horizon a serial novel in Heat magazine
- 1990 The Harbour Breathes (with visual artist Peter Lyssiotis) Sea Cruise/Masterthief, Sydney
- 1985 Italy and The Train (reprint) Rigmarole Books, Melbourne
- 1983 Leaving Qld. and The Train (with Barbara Brooks), Sea Cruise Books, Sydney
- 1982 Were all Women Sex-Mad? Rigmarole Books, Melbourne
- 1977 Italy, Rigmarole Books, Melbourne
Work from the 70’s to 2000 is now available in downloadable pdf’s on the Sea Cruise website at: http://seacruise.ath.cx/annacouani/index.html
Anna’s work has been published in numerous anthologies such as:
Notes for the Translators 2013 (ASM Poetry, Macao), Small Wonder 2012 (Spineless Wonders, Sydney), Mothers from the Edge (Owl Press), Penguin Book of Australian Women Poets, Transgressions (Penguin), Off the Record (Penguin), Up from Below (Redress), Telling Ways (Aust Feminist Studies), Inner Cities (Penguin), Moments of Desire (Penguin), Goodbye to Romance (Allen & Unwin), The Writing Book (Allen & Unwin), An Arc of Australian Voices (OUP), The Temperament of Generations (Melbourne Uni Press), Striking Chords (Allen & Unwin), Memory (A&R), The Penguin Book of Modern Australian Poetry (Penguin), Reading from the Left (Freemantle ACP), Retelling the Tale-bilingual Greek women (Owl), Litmus Suite (Live Poets Society), Made in Australia (Gan Gan, Germany), Contemporary Modern Classics (Vintage), Eat the Ocean (Literary Mouse Press), Wombats of Bundanon (ASM, Macao), Indigo Book of Australian Prose Poems (Ginninderra Press SA), Southern Sun, Aegean Light (Arcadia)
She has also appeared in many literary magazines such as: P76, The Wonderbook of Poetry, Jacket 2, Meanjin, Southerly, Otis Rush, Magic Sam, To Chroniko, X-Text
- Anna Couani’s Website http://seacruise.ath.cx/annacouani/
- 33 Poems by Anna Couani at The Australian Poetry Library http://www.poetrylibrary.edu.au/poets/couani-anna
- Spineless Wonders asks Anna Couani http://shortaustralianstories.com.au/spineless-wonders-asks-anna-couani/
- Jane Skelton: Interview – Anna Couani on experimental writing, influences & reading http://janeskelton.com.au/interview-with-anna-couani/
- Poems by Anna Couani on Jacket 2 http://jacket2.org/poems/poems-anna-couani
- Women Writing and Literary Practice (Paper presented by Anna Couani to the Women Writing: Views and Prospects, 1975-1995 seminar, November 1995) https://www.nla.gov.au/events/couani.html
- Life lived outside the enclosure: Virginia Shepherd reviews Small Wonders by Anna Couani https://rochfordstreetreview.com/2013/07/03/life-lived-outside-the-enclosure-virginia-shepherd-reviews-small-wonders-by-anna-couani/
- A review by Mary Hawkins of Leaving Queensland & The Train (Sea Cruise Books) in P76 Issue 1 https://p76issue1.wordpress.com/2012/08/22/barbara-brooks-leaving-queensland-anna-couani-the-train-review-by-mary-hawkins/
- Falling Angels: A Chapbook Curated by Anna Couani Cordite September 2012 http://cordite.org.au/chapbooks-features/falling-angels/
- Anne Brewster ‘The Radical Poetics of the Gendered
Urban Quotidian: Reading Anna Couani’s Literary Experimentalism of the 1970s and 1980s http://ses.library.usyd.edu.au/bitstream/2123/7672/1/Chapter-3.pdf