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  • Sarah Lao

2020 Microgrant Winner: Sneha Subramanian Kanta

Due to COVID-19 and the extenuating situations of 2020, we launched our inaugural BIPOC microgrant opportunity in September and received an overwhelming amount of interest. We were humbled by the talent of our applicants, and the heartbreak we felt at not being able to fund all these immensely deserving creators has only strengthened our resolve to support our creative community in every way we can going forward.

This year, we are honored to announce KWAN-ANN TAN and SNEHA SUBRAMANIAN KANTA as our two microgrant winners, who will each receive $100 and the publication of their portfolio in our ISSUE II. Here, read Sneha's discussion of her work.

Tell us about yourself and who you are as an artist.

"As an artist, I'm primarily interested in how language helps to shape explorations of identity and ancestral history. In its semblance, literature to me embodies those subterranean hinges that cannot be reached mechanically to its core; but in the sheer pleasure of revisiting, rereading and re-engaging with its seminal discourses. My artistic influences are an amalgamation of vital voices that speak about their experiences from myriad peripheries. I have been closely studying the work of Rilke, Hermann Hesse, Amrita Pritam, Dalip Kaur Tiwana, Joy Harjo, Ocean Vuong, Chelsea Dingman, and Tarfia Faizullah in the most recent years. There is a plethora in the magnitude of their works that beckons a sense of understanding and participating in the world around us. Poetics that seek to resist heteronormative practices are of keen interest to me. A powerful paradigm shift takes place when our families share their histories with us, and we operate from a lens of unlearning. It is often within the folds, silences, absences, and gaps that we derive our most meaningful and important work.

I believe that the act of engaging with poetry is one filled with solitude, but it does not have to be a lonely venture. My manuscript in-progress addresses the diversity of languages, ancestral trauma, Partition, gender, and violence. I hope to continue this endeavor towards the formation of my first full-length book of poetry.​"

Find Sneha at or on Twitter: @SnehaKantaS


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