Ya-Wen Ho is a letterpress researcher, graphic designer, and poet currently living in and working from Wellington. As research assistant for the Chinese Scholars’ Studio project at Wai-te-ata Press, Victoria University of Wellington, she is cleaning and archiving a unique collection of Chinese metal type, once used to print the New Zealand Chinese Growers Journal (1949-1972). As part of the project, she researches and contextualises the local history of the Growers Journal within broader Chinese-language print histories.
Always seeking to bridge academia and broader communities, she also practises as a poet and freelance graphic designer. Her first book of poetry was published by Tinfish Press (Hawaii, 2012). Literary awards include a Horoeka/Lancewood Reading Grant in 2015 and the Ema Saiko Poetry Fellowship at New Zealand Pacific Studio in 2016. She designs print matter, from community zines to the first English-Mandarin bilingual edition of 25 Best New Zealand Poems (Wai-te-ata Press, 2016). A Taipei-born New Zealander, she works bilingually between Mandarin and English, merging the two languages in performance.