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Isabel Fargo Cole

Isabel Fargo Cole

area: Literature

Key Facts


Germany, USA





recommending institution


time period

May 2023 - June 2023

Reading & Talk at MQ Summer Stage: Thu 22.06., 19h

Isabel Fargo Cole, born 1973, Galena, Illinois, USA, grew up in New York City and studied humanities at the University of Chicago. She has lived in Berlin since 1995 as an author and translator from German of works by Annemarie Schwarzenbach, Wolfgang Hilbig, Franz Fühmann, Alexander Kluge, and Adalbert Stifter, among others. Her translation of Wolfgang Hilbig's Alte Abdeckerei was awarded the Kurt & Helen Wolff Prize in 2018.

She has been writing in German since 2005 and publishes short prose and essays in Sinn und Form and elsewhere. Fellowships include: Kunststiftung Sachsen-Anhalt, Künstlerhaus Wiepersdorf, Künstlerhaus Lukas, Grenzgänger-Stipendium.

Her debut novel Die grüne Grenze was published by Edition Nautilus in 2017 and was nominated for the Klaus-Michael-Kühne-Prize 2017 and the Prize of the Leipzig Book Fair 2018. Her second novel Das Gift der Biene (Edition Nautilus, 2019) was selected for the LiteraTour Nord. Her long essay Die Goldküste. Eine Irrfahrt was published by Matthes und Seitz in 2022.

Cole is the initiator of the project

© Dirk Skiba

Project info

During her residency at the MQ, Isabel Fargo Cole is working on an essay complex that, among other things, circles around themes of "nature writing" in Adalbert Stifter, traces his ways - whether in his books, in the streets of Vienna, or in the countryside - and continues to write in our changing world.

She also hopes to gain important momentum in a second venture that is not purely literary: in early 2020, she launched the "" initiative, a project that encourages Berlin-based cultural workers to participate in forest projects and incorporate this active experience into their work. Fargo Cole would like to use her stay at the MQ to talk to environmentally interested Viennese artists about how to combine artistic and practical environmental commitment.

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