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Recognising the achievements of our Fellowship shortlist 2023

Each year, the Red Room Poetry Fellowship is awarded to a previously-commissioned poet to foster and enhance their poetic and professional development. Established to recognise and develop the achievements of contemporary Australian poets, the Fellowship supports the artistic growth of the individual as well as the wider community.

Congratulations to our Fellowship Shortlist for 2023. These poets are a vivid reflection of the incredible poetic talent in Australia today.

Statement from the Judges

The judges would like to congratulate the ten shortlisted poets for the 2023 Red Room Fellowship. 

The Fellowship received nearly fifty applications this year, from poets almost at the very beginning of their poetic journeys to very established and highly credentialled poets. There was an impressive diversity of voices from all around the country including Indigenous and refugee poets. Deciding on a shortlist was a difficult decision, with several applications of a high calibre. Very few points separated the fifteen top-ranking applicants. We wished we could have chosen more than the ten places on offer.

As judges, we selected entries that demonstrated evidence of impact on the poet’s creative development and the merit of the project proposed. It was fascinating and exciting for the judges to consider such a diverse range of voices and projects. Some applications touched hearts, some broadened minds, and some amplified voices that needed to be heard.

The selected poets detailed deeply considered, thought out and well-articulated projects, sometimes having a very specific and laser-like focus. The projects span space and time and showcase innovation, flair, and ambition. As a group, the poets demonstrate an exciting Australian poetry landscape, one that is not afraid to take risks and engage with important subject matter. We would like to thank Red Room Poetry for the opportunity of judging this important Fellowship. We would also like to thank the poets for the privilege of reading your work and we encourage everyone who applied to please apply again.

~ Ellen van Neerven, Scott-Patrick Mitchell, David Adès

Partners and Supporters

  • Australia Council for the Arts

  • Create NSW

  • Bunanon Trust