Collaboration Deltaworkers and the Dutch Foundation for Literature

Olivier Willemsen to New Orleans as WiR

1 Apr-31 May 2016

The talented young Dutch writer Olivier Willemsen has been selected by the Dutch Foundation for Literature for a residency period of two months at Deltaworkers in New Orleans, U.S.A. His novel Morgen komt Liesbeth (Liesbeth’s Coming Tomorrow; De Harmonie), published in late 2014, was nominated one of the two best first novels of the year by the Dutch daily newspaper Trouw. His second novel is due in mid-2016. During his residency Willemsen will work on his second and third novel.

This is the first collaboration between the Dutch Foundation for Literature and Deltaworkers, a nomadic artistic production and residence program that hosts and presents European artists from different disciplines in New Orleans. The name of the residence refers to the home-towns of its promotors Maaike Gouwenberg and Joris Lindhout: Rotterdam (NL) and New Orleans, which are both located in a river delta.

The residence is a typical New Orleans shotgun house. This means that the artists staying there have to walk through each others rooms to get to other rooms, the porch, the kitchen, the bathroom, which requires a certain level of sociability. It is a communal place to work and live, aimed at stimulating cooperation between the residing artists.

Olivier Willemsen (1980) grew up on an old farm on the outskirts of Haps, a Dutch village right on the border with Germany. At the age of eighteen he left for Amsterdam, where he studied history, but he became a full-time writer.

Willemsen will reside in New Orleans April through May of 2016. During his residency he will work on his second novel for which he will specifically look into the role of border patrol during the cold war. Next to that he will start working on his third novel by doing research into the effects of the devastating hurricane Katrina on the inhabitants of New Orleans. Moira Crone, author of The Not Yet, will help him in the initial stages of this novel.

During his stay, Willemsen will write a blog on his experiences for the website of Deltaworkers.

For additional information on:

Orli Austen


Orli Austen

Residency program

[email protected]