Jean Vengua is an artist, writer, and poet. Her visual art often explores haptic perception, especially the sense of touch and sound as well as other senses; the mind and body perceive and translate perceptions through the hands and chosen tool (pencil, paintbrush, pen). Her haptics are related to asemic writing, which is gestural and experimental, as well as to the practice of zen meditation. She is currently working on series of abstract, locally-based paintings that explore the experience of California’s recurring “fire season” in the Central Coast/Big Sur areas. Jean is returning to painting after a having spent several decades focusing on writing and teaching.
Jean is the author of Prau, a collection of experimental poetry (for which she received the Filamore Tabios, Sr., Memorial Prize (2007, Meritage Press), and a chapbook, The Aching Vicinities (Otoliths Press). With Mark Young, she co-edited the First Hay(na)ku Anthology, and The Hay(na)ku Anthology Vol. II. In the mid 1990s, Elizabeth H. Pisares and Jean Vengua formed Tulitos Press and published and edited the Debut: the Making of a Filipino American Film by Gene Cajayon and John Manal Castro, and The Flipside, by Rod Pulido. Her poetry and essays have been published in many journals and anthologies. She is editor of the literary/art journal, Local Nomad, and lives in Monterey, CA.