Doug Lang, born in Swansea, Wales, came to the US in 1973, and quickly became the most American of poets.In Washington, DC, he has been for many years a human hub of the local community of writers and artists. The reading series he directed at Folio Books helped establish the DC-New York-Bay Area poetry axis that fostered the work of dozens of emerging poets in the ‘70s and ‘80s. His own work, in collections like Hot Shot, Magic Fire Chevrolet, and Dérangé, and in many small-press and zine publications, has influenced American poets and poetry for decades. His erudite command of literature, cinema, music, and visual art, his wit, and his indefatigable spirit of patience and good will have inspired the admiration of writers throughout the US and around the world.
At the Corcoran School of Art in Washington, Doug offered generations of students a living example of the writer as artist, introducing innovative, student-centered and experiential methods long before they were adopted in classes throughout the US. He made the Corcoran a prestigious and productive place to study writing as well as visual art and design. He was always available to offer advice, critique, and encouragement—to his colleagues in faculty and staff as well as students. In 37 years as a teacher, Faculty Association President, department chair, and Interim Dean, Doug Lang served as a mentor to hundreds of students and alumni, a beloved colleague, a valued leader in difficult times, and for many of us, the heart, soul, and conscience of one of the nation’s most original places to study art. Now, in his retirement years, our friend and colleague Doug Lang faces serious medical issues, and his expenses exceed his resources—as so often is the case with those who have devoted themselves to writing and teaching. We are reaching out to you, the community for whom Doug so often proved a tireless advocate and ally, to donate what you can to defray the expenses of his care at Springvale Terrace in Silver Spring MD.