ABRACADABRA Studio of Poetics is a Toledo Warehouse District artist space opened in late 2013 by Joel Lipman, Lucas County Poet Laureate (2008-2013).

ABRACADABRA Studio of Poetics is at the end of the second-floor hallway in the Gathered Gallery & Studio Building, reached through the Gallery.

ABRACADABRA Studio of Poetics is a space where poetry roams, rules and abandons rules.

Poetry books and periodicals on shelves or tables at ABRACADABRA want to be read, browsed or honorably borrowed.

ABRACADABRA is unabashedly partial in its dedication to print and to books and their papery pages.

Visual poems, language objects, broadsides and working typescripts of studio members speak from ABRACADABRA’s walls.

Poets, writers and artists from across the regional community meet at ABRACADABRA in workshops and conversational groups to discuss and practice writing poems.

ABRACADABRA workshops and conversations seek to inspire the poet, the artist and the self-motivated new writer of poetry.

ABRACADABRA workshops and conversations benefit long-practicing poets.

ABRACADABRA sessions provide artists and writers the robust conversational company of fellow poets, text-attentive critiques of poems-in-progress and the regularity of a directed writers’ group.

Periodically ABRACADABRA schedules conversations and presentations on visual poets, spatial poetics and the shared practices of artists and poets.

ABRACADABRA poetry residencies and tutorials can be individually scheduled.


JL picture Joel Lipman, Biographical Note

Joel Lipman was born in 1942 in Washington, D.C., and spent his youth in Kenosha, Wisconsin. His degrees are from the University of Wisconsin and SUNY-Buffalo. As a graduate student Joel studied under master poets Gwendolyn Brooks (Pulitzer Prize for Poetry, 1950), James Wright (Pulitzer Prize for Poetry, 1972), John Logan (Poetry editor, The Nation) and Robert Creeley (Bollingen Prize; editor, Black Mountain Review).

Named by the County Commissioners as the first Poet Laureate of Lucas County Ohio [2008-2013] and Emeritus Professor of English, for 37 years Joel held positions as professor (Art & English) and associate dean for the Arts at the University of Toledo. He previously taught at Columbia College-Chicago and the University of Illinois-Chicago, and continues to periodically do so at the Toledo Museum of Art School of Art & Design.

Conceptualizing a desire to develop an independent community poets’ studio, in October 2013 Joel founded ABRACADABRA Studio of Poetics as an immediate for working with individual poets and groups in an intimately-scaled environment without the limitations and proscriptions of an academic curriculum, canon or institutional norms.

Five times recipient of Ohio Arts Council Individual Artist fellowships in Poetry, founding co-director of the Toledo Poets Center, and past Literary Editor for the University of Toledo Press, Joel’s distinctions include the Ohio Governor’s Award for an Individual Artist, Fulbright Scholar, Harry Ransom Humanities Center and Lilly Library Research fellowships. In 2011 he received the Ohioana State Library’s Pegasus Award for Lifetime Achievement in Poetry.

Joel’s slammed at Chicago’s Green Mill, and published in periodicals both widely read and obscure. Joel’s reviewed and juried for periodicals and contests, conducted school and community residencies and developed practical programs and writer’s workshops for poets of all backgrounds and ages.

Lipman’s poems have almost always been independently published. Among his hard to find and extremely limited small press editions, fine print broadsides, letterpress books and chapbooks of poetry are Mercury Vapor Lamp [Ocooch Mountain Press], Chicago, You Got a Wide Stance [Piirto Press], “My love is” & Provocateur [Bloody Twin Press], Machete Chemistry/Panades Physics, co-authored with Yasser Musa [Cubola New Art Foundation], Glass Will [Toledo Poets Center Press], The Real Ideal [Luna Bisante Prods] and Ransom Notes [Obscure Publications]. A mail artist and visual poet, his essays and visual poems are found on-line at the Light & Dust Anthology of Poetry and Poetry Foundation websites. “A legendary visual poet,” wrote the Poetry Foundation, Joel Lipman’s unique poems are distinguished by publication in 2008 and 2011 in Poetry Magazine.

Married to Cynthia Landrum and father of three grown children, Joel Lipman resides in Toledo, Ohio, and Belfast, Maine.