Photo of Jesse Minkert

Jesse Minkert

Jesse Minkert’s work has appeared in about fifty literary journals including the Cream City Review, Confrontation, Mount Hope, the Floating Bridge Review, the Minetta Review, Poetry Northwest, Common Knowledge, and Harpur Palate. Thanks to Raven Chronicles, he is a 2016 Pushcart Nominee. Over twenty years he has written about fifty short radio stories that were performed and produced by blind and visually impaired young people in the Blind Youth Audio Project, and many short pieces for the Jack Straw New Media Gallery workshops, in collaborations between Jack Straw and Arts and Visually Impaired Audiences.

Minkert has collected a wide variety of experiences from the art world and the real world which have made him the writer he is now. His training in the visual arts is the source of his approach to form and design in literature. He has a BFA as a painter and an MA as a sculptor. His work has been displayed in galleries and shows in Houston, Carmel, Humboldt County, and Seattle. He has created many objects in wood, including a six-foot sperm whale from a single piece of western red cedar, which hangs from the ceiling of the Whale Museum in Friday Harbor, Washington. He has been a picture framer, sign maker, hot tub maker, cabinet maker, radio theater producer, and art shipping specialist for galleries and museums.

He founded the nonprofit corporation, Arts and Visually Impaired Audiences, which has provided arts access for blind and visually impaired people in Washington State since 1991. In that capacity he has kept books, designed programs, written and administered grants, served as a consultant to arts organizations on accessibility issues, and trained access providers. He ran the Audio Description Service in Seattle, coordinated around 700 live descriptions of theatrical productions, trained describers, described about 160 performances himself, and conducted descriptive tours of exhibits such as the King Tut exhibition, the MoPoP Guitar Gallery, and the Olympic Sculpture Park. He wrote upwards of 600 preshow descriptions of sets and characters for plays. He wrote and recorded descriptive tracks for art videos and access training videos. His theatrical plays and radio plays have won awards. Decades of living with Type 1 diabetes have led Minkert to address in his work themes of health and the body. In 1981, diabetic retinopathy threatened to take away his vision. This critical moment helped him to decide to commit less to the visual arts and to focus his creative efforts on writing.

New Media Gallery 1999 (with Susie Kozawa): Nearly Seen, Closely Heard


Susie Kozawa and Jesse Minkert | Nearly Seen, Closely Heard READ MORE >

Education Projects

Blind Youth Audio Project 2019 READ MORE >

A student wearing glasses and a baseball cap sits holding an ukulele, a microphone in front of him.

Blind Youth Audio Project 2023 READ MORE >

Sasha Petrenko and a student with a white cane stand inside a large, geometric structure made of wooden rods in a darkened room. An image is projected on the wall behind them.


Engineer Daniel Guenther and student holding a white cane standing at a studio computer.

Ching-In Chen & Cassie Mira: Breathing in a Time of Disaster READ MORE >

Rachel Lodge: Transfigurations: Carbon Flow READ MORE >

Grid of six images from an online meeting. Cameron Perry Fraser in the studio, students trying out simple instruments.

Cameron Perry Fraser: Large String Array READ MORE >

Grid of four zoom screens. In the bottom left, hands shape a small pile of soil.

Peter Christenson: F40.298: Generalized Opus Foramina READ MORE >

Close-up image of a wooden sculpture with holes and vibrating strings like a musical instrument.

Andrew Fallat: Timbre READ MORE >

A student at a microphone, holding a wooden box up to their mouth and wearing headphones.

Tiffany Danielle Elliott: I Promise I Won't Scream READ MORE >

Perri Lynch Howard and a student wear headphones; Perri holds a container on a table while the student pours something into it from another container.

Perri Lynch Howard: On Our Watch READ MORE >

Blind Youth Audio Project 2022 READ MORE >

Grid of 12 screens in a Zoom session from Blind Youth 2021

Blind Youth Audio Project 2021 READ MORE >

Yunmi Her: Natural Individuals READ MORE >

Blind Youth Audio Project 2020 READ MORE >

Naima Lowe: Aren't They All Just Love Songs Anyway? READ MORE >

Blind Youth Audio Project 2012 READ MORE >

Erin Elyse Burns: To Take the Shape of the Container READ MORE >

Blind Youth Audio Project 2018 READ MORE >

Gallery Workshop for Garrett Fisher and Tori Ellison's Mikawa

Garrett Fisher and Tori Ellison: Mikawa READ MORE >

A visually impaired girl is recording vocals in front of a microphone

Blind Youth Audio Project 2017 READ MORE >

Jack Straw New Media Gallery workshop with James Borchers. Photo by Sherwin Eng.

James Borchers: Obiectum Resonare READ MORE >

Andy Behrle: luminous soundscape READ MORE >

Joel Ong: Those Who Observe the Wind . . . READ MORE >

Zack Bent: Lean-out, Lean-to READ MORE >

Rachel Green and Seth Sexton: Hypnagogic Jerk READ MORE >

Student in the 2016 Jack Straw Blind Youth Audio Project

Blind Youth Audio Project 2016 READ MORE >

Blind Youth Audio Project 2015 READ MORE >

Blind Youth Audio Project 2014 READ MORE >

Blind Youth Audio Project 2013 READ MORE >