Erato Celebrates 40 Years

Student creative arts journal records four decades of creative arts at Georgia Tech

The endurance of Erato, Georgia Tech’s student-run creative arts journal, is tangible proof that engineering and science students crave a literary arts outlet, both as authors and readers. April marks the 40th anniversary of the publication.

Erato 2009 Cover
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Cover art for the 2009 edition of Erato

Established in 1969 by student Richard Sawyer, Erato is “dedicated solely to the artistic endeavors of Georgia Tech students, another way to set Tech students apart,” said Erato Editor Amaris Gutierrez-Ray. The journal displays the creativity of Georgia Tech students, publishing an annual volume comprised of student poetry, prose, and art.

The history of Erato authenticates the existence of interdisciplinary thought and creativity at Georgia Tech. “Forty years is an especially long run for any journal, so Erato is quite distinguished for this reason,” said Karen Head, an instructor in the School of Literature, Communication and Culture as well as the journal’s faculty advisor. “One of the biggest misconceptions people have is that students at an engineering school are not interested in — or capable of producing — fine art. Erato is an excellent demonstration that this is not the case.”

Since its inception, thousands of students from all colleges and majors have contributed work to Erato. However, access to creative expression afforded to Tech students through the journal has not always been so readily accessible. “In 1979, Erato lost funding from the Student Government Association, but still managed to self-publish an issue, demonstrating the need for a creative outlet on this campus,” said Gutierrez-Ray. The Student Government Association restored funding in 1985 and remains a loyal supporter of the journal.

As Erato continues to write its destiny, plans for expansion may be a future footnote. “Erato hopes to take this history into the future to reach an even broader readership consisting of cross-college communication and collaborations with the other print publications on campus,” said Gutierrez-Ray.

The journal’s aspirations for expansion offer a unique promise to the greater community of artists outside of Georgia Tech. “Many prestigious artists were first published in small literary journals,” noted Head. “Who knows, maybe a future Nobel Prize in Literature winner is among those people being published for the first time in the 40th anniversary issue of Erato.”

Copies of the 40th anniversary issue can be found in the publication's distribution racks, which are located in the Library Rotunda, the D.M. Smith Building entrance, the Instructional Center entrance, the Student Center, and the Publications Office in the Flag Building.