Dorothea Smartt was born and brought up in London and is of Barbadian heritage. She worked for many local groups and Black/Women’s co-operatives in London while writing, then began to perform her work and contribute to poetry anthologies.
She was Poet in Residence at Brixton Market and Attached Live Artist at the Institute of Contemporary Arts in London, where she was also awarded her first commission to create the collaborative performance from you to me to you. Her solo performance work, Medusa, combining poetry and visuals, was named an 'Outstanding Black Example' of British Live Art. In 2000 she was commissioned to write her first play, Fallout, which toured primary schools.
Her first poetry collection, Connecting Medium, was published in 2001, and contains many poems exploring her Barbadian heritage and her experience of growing up in London. The Caribbean Times describes her voice as one which 'coils up your feelings, around granite chips of truth ... unwinds solace, in the most soothing volleys.' Her second collection, Samboo's Grave/Bilal's Grave (2008) explores the history of Samboo, an African slave brought from the Caribbean to Lancaster and buried at Sunderland Point.
Dorothea Smartt is an experienced workshop leader, a former part-time lecturer in Creative Writing at Birkbeck College and Leeds University, and one of the poetryclass team of poets. She regularly mentors aspiring poets and goes into London schools as a visiting or resident poet. She is poetry editor for SableLitMag, was visiting writer at Florida International University, and has given readings in countries including Hungary, Denmark, The Netherlands, Solvenia, Bahrain, USA, Egypt, and Jamaica. Taken from https://literature.britishcouncil.org/writer/dorothea-smartt