Thursday, May 25, 2017

Catching Up With Artist Watch Artists 6

Following is the sixth in a periodic series about the careers and recent activities of artists I have showcased in my monthly Artist Watch column at the online arts magazine Escape Into Life. Congratulations to all on their many noteworthy successes!

✦ Tina Spratt, Somerset, England (December 17, 2015, Artist Watch) ~ Tina's gorgeous painting Slumber was selected for the 12th International ARC Salon Exhibition at New York's Salmagundi Club (May 12 - June 1); the show travels to the MEAM Museum, Barcelona, Spain this fall (September 23 - November 27). Tina's was one of 82 contemporary realist works selected from 3,100 entries from 63 countries. Tina's Cocooned was pre-selected to appear in the "Figurativas 17" exhibition at MEAM.

✦ Amy Pleasant, Seattle, Washington (May 19, 2016, Artist Watch) ~ Amy's paintings can be seen through May 30 in "A Humble Gathering: Kelsey Willis and Amy Pleasant" at the Dallas Public Library.

✦ Maggie Matthews, West Cornwall, England (September 17, 2015, Artist Watch) ~ Maggie's Painting the Seasons collection goes on view at Cornwall Contemporary from July 5 to July 31.

✦ Alexandra Eldridge (January 19, 2017, Artist Watch) ~ The contemporary Nuart Gallery, Santa Fe, New Mexico, is host to Alexandra Eldridge's solo exhibition "the land of dreams is far better", opening tomorrow and continuing through June 11. Alexandra's poetical images (the exhibition title comes from a line by William Blake and the works are inspired by a Carl Jung metaphor) are composed of venetian plaster, collage, and photographs printed from vintage glass negatives.


Alexandra Eldridge, The Witness Bird
Mixed Media on Panel
30" x 40"

✦ Kazaan Viveiros, Washington, D.C., Area (May 15, 2014, Artist Watch) ~ Kazaan was commissioned to do a portrait of German singer-songwriter Bernhard Karakoulakis (aka Boo Hoo) for the cover of his 2017 album Lushly. (See the Commissions section of Kazaan's Website for more information about the CD cover.) Kazaan's new series of acrylics on paper is Circlescapes. (Also see Kazaan's page at Page Bond Gallery, Richmond, Virginia.)


Lushly CD
Cover Art by Kazaan Viveiros

✦ Elke Vogelsang, Hildesheim, Germany (August 18, 2016, Artist Watch) ~ Elke recently celebrated her sixth anniversary of her business as a photographer.

✦ Noel Paine, London, England; Vienna, Austria (August 20, 2015, Artist Watch) ~ Noel is exhibiting a selection of his recent, smaller paintings and new drawings in "Evolving Moments" at Gallery 54, Mayfair, London. The show closes June 3. Noel also has made available images of some of his work for duvet covers and iPhone case covers. His images also appear on towels, mugs, pillows, and other products.

✦ Page Turner, Roanoke, Virginia (October 16,  2014, Artist Watch) ~ Page will be exhibiting in "Immediate Present", a group art show, at the Mormon Arts Center Festival, New York City, from June 29 to July 1. The exhibition of paintings, photography, video installation, and sculpture features contemporary LDS artists represented in the permanent collection of the Church History Museum.

✦ Salma Arastu, Berkeley, California (January 16, 2014, Artist Watch) ~ Salma presented "My Journey towards God through my Art" on May 13 at the Pacifica Institute, Albany, California. Her work is featured at the Your True Greetings company, which uses her paintings and calligraphy to serve the needs of Muslim communities in the U.S., Canada, Japan, and the United Kingdom.

✦ Sophie Ploeg, South Gloucestershre, United Kingdom (November 19, 2015, Artist Watch) ~ Sophie's painting The Guest was selected for the annual exhibition of the Society of Women Artists, Mall Galleries, London, July 4-9. Read the details.


Sophie Ploeg, The Guest
Oil on Linen
61 cm x 46 cm (24" x 18")

In addition, Sophie's painting The Tapestry was selected for the summer exhibition of the Bath Society of Artists. See the show through July 15 at Victoria Art Gallery.


Links to all the artists' Websites can be found in their respective EIL column.

If you've been featured in Artist Watch and are interested in sharing your accomplishments, please drop me a line periodically.

Wednesday, May 24, 2017

Wednesday Artist: William Kentridge on Time


[M]oments of coherence, of understanding and changing
the world, [are] the most we can hope for.
~ William Kentridge

Five years ago, South African draughtsman, sculptor, and filmmaker William Kentridge created a fascinating, immersive, five-channel installation, The Refusal of Time (2012). Synchronized video projections show live action, animation, and dance; audio feeds comprise both music and sound; a kinetic sculpture (dubbed "the elephant") "breathes". Visual images and megaphones also are featured.

As Kentridge explains in the video below, the piece visualizes time while at the same time upsetting our notions of how we mark time's passage. The installation "uses the metaphors scientists use when they're doing their deepest thinking about time." It is not, however, "a scientific lesson in time"; rather, Kentridge says, "It's much more about to what extent do we escape our fate? To what extent are we heading towards our fate[,] whether we like it or not? Can we change the world on our way or is this all illusory?" The Refusal of Time references not only the science and the philosophy of time but also colonial wars and revolts, cinematic history, Einstein's theory of relativity, Greenwich Mean Time, and South African theatre. 

Kentridge was interviewed by Christian Lund when the artist's work, a joint acquisition of the Metropolitan Museum of Art and the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, opened in February of this year at the Louisiana Museum of Modern Art, where it continues on view through June 18. Featured in the video are excerpts from Making Time, Catherine Meyburgh's 2011 film about the creation of The Refusal of Time.




An artist whose work is exhibited internationally and found in museum collections throughout the world, Kentridge is well-known for his animated films based on charcoal drawings. A printmaker, he also works in photography, collage, and books; designs stage sets; and has produced and directed opera. A witness to the dismantling in the 20th Century of apartheid in South Africa, Kentridge uses art to explore such subjects as time's expansion and contraction, colonialism and totalitarianism, and the consequences of political control and oppression. Among Kentridge's most recent projects is the Centre for the Less Good Idea, an arts foundation in Johannesburg, South Africa, that he describes as a "safe space for uncertainty, doubt, stupidity and, at times, failure." (Read Cristina Ruiz's article "Kentridge Opens Johannesburg Space for Artists to Learn by Failing" in The Art Newspaper, April 13, 2017.)

The publication William Kentridge | The Refusal of Time (Editions Xavier Barral;Har/Bklt, 2013) is available through booksellers.

William Kentridge at Art21 and Barbara Krakow Gallery

William Kentridge on The Refusal of Time at SFMoMA. The installation was shown at the museum from December 16, 2016, through April 2, 2017. The video was produced by the Metropolitan Musuem of Art.

Watch a video on the SFMoMA Website that shows how Kentridge reworks charcoal drawings to create stop-motion animations. Also see the YouTube video Pain & Sympathy, from Art21, in which Kentridge discusses how artists draw on tragedy as subject matter and how the act of drawing can itself be an act of compassion.

Tuesday, May 23, 2017

'Night Court' (Videopoem)

Poet Erica Goss recently made her second videopoem, Night Court, below, doing all of the filming, recording, and editing over two weeks. The poem is from her collection of the same name, which received Glass Lyre Press's 2016 Lyrebird Award. 

Goss, former Poet Laureate of the City of Los Gatos, California (2013-2016) and widely published, also is the author of the chapbook Wild Place (Finishing Line Press, 2012) and Vibrant Words: Ideas an Inspirations for Poets (Pushpen Press, 2014).



(My  thanks to  Dave Bonta, who posted the videopoem to his Moving Poems Website.)

Another version of "Night Court", created by Marie Craven and narrated by Nic Sebastian, can be seen at Gnarled Oak online.


Erica Goss on FaceBook

Monday, May 22, 2017

Monday Muse: Poet Melissa Green


[M]y battle to find language again after a series
of shock treatments destroyed my attachment to it....
~ Poet Melissa Green

A lover of poetry since childhood, Melissa Green also suffered depression at approximately two-year intervals. In 2013, she decided to have a dozen shock treatments and for four years thereafter "had no language"—and no memory of having written anything. In Conversation with Melissa Green (Penny Ante Productions), below, by Green's friend Melissa Shook, the poet describes what it took to "put things back together after [they'd] been destroyed" so that she could "become a poet again." With strength and determination, Green found her way through mental illness and what she suffered because of her shock treatments by making things with her hands and doing what she had never done before. 

Green, who studied with the great Derek Walcott and Joseph Brodsky while in a masters program at Boston University, is the recipient of a Lavan Award (Academy of American Poets) and a Norma Farber Award (Poetry Society of America, 1989). She lives in Massachusetts.





(My thanks to Cynthia Haven's blog, The Book Haven, where I first saw the documentary short and discovered Green's wonderful poetry.)


Poetry by Melissa Green

Magpiety: New & Selected Poems (Arrowsmith Press, 2015) (Read Janeil Page's review, "Why Magpiety? Because the Poet Has So Much More to Say", at Consequence magazine. M. Lock Swingen's review is available at Rain Taxi.)

The Marsh Poems

Fifty-Two (Arrowsmith Press) (This is a limited-edition chapbook of six-line poems. Read a review at New Criterion.)

Squanicook Eclogues (Reprint, Pen & Anvil Press, 2010) (This was Green's debut collection. Read a review at Anna Livia Review blog.)

Melissa Green's poetry has been published in Agni Online, The Best American Poetry, Little Star, The New Republic, The New York Review of BooksThe Paris Review, Poetry Daily, and other literary periodicals. See the blog Melissa Green Poems, which Green closed in 2012, for some of her poems.


Memoirs by Melissa Green

The Linen Way (Rosa Mira Books, 2013) (This is available on Kindle. It details her friendships with Walcott and Brodsky and her struggles with depression. Read an excerpt at Parnassus Poetry in Review. A review is available at Nerobooks.)

Color Is the Suffering of Light (W.W. Norton, 1995) (This is available via resellers.)

Green also is the author of the novel Tres Riches Hours de la Belle Heloise.


Recordings

Recording Session: Melissa Green (April 2015) in the Poetry Room Listening Booth (2015)


Criticism

Soundings: On the Poetry of Melissa Green (Arrowsmith Books, 2016) The book's editor is Sumita Chakraborty, who describes the contents of Soundings on his Website. A 2017 review by Mary Germaine is available at Break Water Review.)

Melissa Green on FaceBook (See her videos on FaceBook.)


Also of Interest

"On Joseph Brodsky and suffering through, by Melissa Green" (52 Men Podcast) at Louise Leonard Website (2017)

Leslie McGrath, "Still a Maker: A Profile of Melissa Green", AWP magazine (2016)

Askold Melnyczuk, "Second Opinions: Vesper Sparrow at Dawn", Drunken Boat (2016)

David Rivard, "'I've Been Awhile Away': The Poetry of Melissa Green" (Review of Magpiety), Agni Online (2016) 

Sumita Chakraborty, "Violet  and Violent: A Conversation with Melissa Green", Los Angeles Review of Books (2016)

Daniel Evans Pritchard, "MAGPIETY: An Interview with Melissa Green" at Woodberry Poetry Room (2015)

Toni Nicolas, "Walcott Introduces Author of Magpiety!", St. Lucia Star (2015)

"'Magpiety': getting to the bottom of it." at The Book Haven Blog (2015)

"Poet Melissa Green: Virgil would still be proud" at The Book Haven Blog (2014)

"Q&A with poet Melissa Green" at Rosa Mira Books Blog (July 2013)

"An Interview with Melissa Green" at Tim Jones's Books in the Trees Blog (2013)

 "Melissa Green; A place from Words", The Ottoman Estate Blog, September 24, 2010 (A recording by Green also is available here.)

Nora Delaney, "The Poetry of Melissa Green", Jacket 37 (2009)

Melissa Shook at Joseph Bellows Gallery

Sunday, May 21, 2017

Thought for the Day


Forgiveness is not a form of forgetting. It is,
rather, a profound form of remembering.  . . .
~ Archbishop Desmond Tutu
__________________________________

Quoted from Desmond Tutu and Mpho Tutu, Made for Goodness and Why This Makes All the Difference (HarperCollins, Reprint 2011)

Desmond Tutu, Theologian (Anglican), Human Rights Defender, Nobel Peace Prize Winner (1984), First Black African Archbishop 



Desmond Tutu on FaceBook

Mpho Tutu, Daughter of Desmond Tutu; Executive Director, The Desmond and Leah Tutu Legacy Foundation; Episcopal Priest 

Mpho Tutu on FaceBook

Saturday, May 20, 2017

Saturday Short

I don't like to take photographs of people who are sad.
I somehow have this misguided therapeutic idea that
it's my role in the universe to make people feel better.
~ Elsa Dorfman


Film Poster

Today's short is the trailer for Errol Morris's documentary The B-Side: Elsa Dorfman's Portrait Photography (2016). Based in Cambridge, Massachusetts, Dorfman, who was most interested in "the surfaces of people", took photographs for 35 years, using an unwieldly, weighty (240 pounds) Polaroid 20"x24" camera. The subjects of her large-format portraits included families, Beat poets (e.g., Allen Ginsberg, Peter Orlovsky), folk and rock stars (e.g., Bob Dylan), and other notables. Before retiring, she invited Morris to her studio to share her memories and give him a look into her archives.

The 76-minute film was screened at the Toronto International Film Festival and Independent Film Festival Boston and officially opens June 9 in Boston.



The B-Side at Neonrated on FaceBook and Instagram

Elsa Dorfman Website (Dorfman describes her Website as her "obsession".)

Elsa Dorfman Photography on FaceBook

Read Mark Feeney's article "'The B-Side' Could Be Early Birthday Present for Photographer Elsa Dorfman", Boston Globe, April 21, 2017.

Also see Sara Cravatt's "Celebrated Portraitist Elsa Dorfman Takes Her Final Giant Polaroids" at American Photo. Included is an 8:54-minute radio segment with Dorfman.

Friday, May 19, 2017

All Art Friday

All Art Friday

All Art Friday Spotlights

✦ Three years after debuting her sphinx Sugar Baby in "A Subtlety" at Brooklyn's Domino Sugar Refining Plant, Kara Walker is taking on two new public works projects. Read Doreen St. Felix's feature article "Kara Walker's Next Act" at Vulture to learn what's on Walker's artistic radar.


✦ How does an artist respond to a war that has ravaged his country? Damascus-born artist Wissam Al Jazairy paints the reality of Syria. Watch a short film featuring Al Jazairy's  paintings.

Wissam Al Jazairy on Tumblr and Flickr

Syria.Art on FaceBook

Read Diana Al Rifai's "Anatomy of a Revolution Through Art" at Al Jazeera; and "Wissam al-Jazairy" at Syria Untold. 

✦ Nancy Perloff, author of Explodity: Sound, Image, and Word in Russian Futurist Book Art (Getty Research Institute, 2017), explores zaum, an experimental language used by Russian painters and poets, in an interview with The J. Paul Getty Trust's president Jim Cuno. Both audio and a transcript of the interview are available at the iris, The Getty's blog.


Cover Art

✦ Work by England's MacKenzie Thorpe is on view through May 29 at New York City's AFA Gallery. For information and images, see the gallery's exhibition page for Thorpe.


Mackenzie Thorpe on FaceBook

AFA Gallery on FaceBook, Instagram, and YouTube

✦ Chinese artist Ai Weiwei has crafted a response to the humanitarian crisis caused by conflicts in Syria, Iraq, and Afghanistan. His Law of the Journey, on view through July 1 at the National Gallery in Prague, is featured in Hyperallergic; read Dorian Batycka's "Ai Weiwei Floats a New Project About the Refugee Crisis".


✦ Following is the trailer for Linda Hatendoft's The Cats of Mirikitani (Brightwide Films), a film about an elderly homeless man, Jimmy Mirikitani, who uses art to heal from the trauma he suffered during WWII and on the streets of New York City, especially after 9/11. The documentary won numerous awards following its 2006 premiere at the Tribeca Film Festival.



ArtHouse Films


Exhibitions Here and There

✭ In New York City, The Grolier Club continues through July 29 its exhibition "The Revival of Calligraphy: 1906 to 2006". Drawn from public and private collections, the show features calligraphic art by more than 70 Western artists. The San Francisco Public Library's Richard Harrison Collection of Calligraphy & Lettering and private collectors are among those who have loaned calligraphic art for the show. Read about the exhibition at the blog of Fine Books and Collections magazine. A full-color catalogue is available.

The Grolier Club on FaceBook and Flickr

✭ Next up in Penland School of Crafts' John & Robyn Horn Gallery, Penland, North Carolina, is "Within the Margins | Contemporary Ceramics". Opening May 30 and running through July 16, the exhibition is curated by Steven Young Lee.


Penland on FaceBook and YouTube

✭ More than 1,000 artifacts, images, video clips, music, and oral histories comprise "Cotton Fields to Skyscrapers: Reinventing Charlotte and the Carolina Piedmont in the New South", an 8,000-square-foot "centerpiece" exhibition at Levine Museum of the New South. Charlotte, North Carolina, and its 13 surrounding counties are the exhibition's focus, illustrating profound changes in the South since the Civil War. The museum has created six "environments" that offer visitors interactive, hands-on experiences in a one-room tenant farmer's house, a cotton mill, a mill house, a chapel that was within one of the first African American hospitals in the South, a Belk department store, and a lunch counter for local sit-in leaders; the sixth installation includes an opportunity to see and touch seed cotton. A selection of installation photos is available at the exhibition link above.


Installation Photo: Barber Shop

Levine Museum on FaceBook and Instagram

Museum Blog

✭ On view through September 4 at Missouri's St. Louis Art Museum is "In the Realm of Trees: Photographs, Paintings, and Scholar's Objects from the Collection". Presenting photographs, paintings, and decorative works by Chinese artists,  the exhibition also features contemporary photographs by American Michael Cherney, the set titled Sacred Tree on Mount Lu, mounted on a folding screen; acquired by SLAM in 2016, this exhibition marks the first time the set has been shown. Ink monochrome paintings on hanging scrolls and scholar's objects that depict trees as revered subjects also are exhibited. SLAM's curator of Asian art, Philip Hu, curated the exhibition. Cherney is based in Beijing, China.

Michael Cherney at Photography of China and Qui Mai

SLAM on FaceBook, Instagram, and YouTube

✭ In the East Building Tower of the National Gallery of Art, Washington, D.C., you'll find "Theaster Gates: The Minor Arts", a new body of work, continuing through September 4. Featured are Gates's towering library constructed of old copies of Ebony magazine; a landscape painting created from roofer's tar on yellow Naugahyde; the floor of a Chicago high school gym; and other works repurposed from the outdated and left-behind, yet acquiring value through the stories they tell us. The exhibition is free. A related, comprehensive monograph about Gates, which includes a survey by Lisa Lee, an interview by Carol Becker, and Gates's own writings, as well as 220 illustrations, is available.


Monograph Cover Art


NGA on FaceBook and Instagram

Thursday, May 18, 2017

New Artist Watch Feature at Escape Into Life



Sharon Wolpoff, Dave, 2013
Oil on Linen
22" x 22"
© Sharon Wolpoff

PLEASE DO NOT COPY IMAGE

I am delighted to introduce the work of Sharon Wolpoff in my new Artist Watch column at the online arts magazine Escape Into Life.

Sharon, who began her art training at age 5, has a master's of fine arts degree in painting from American University, Washington, D.C., and has also studied fine jewelry design, tapestry weaving, beadwork, and printmaking. In addition, she is a skilled hands-on healer. A native of Washington, D.C., she maintains her studio in Kensington, Maryland.

You'll find in today's Artist Watch column eight images of Sharon's paintings as well as Sharon's Artist Statement and biography. The images are all selected from Sharon's upcoming exhibition at the National Institutes of Health, "Sacred Thresholds & Other Spaces: Glimpses of Italy"; their appearance at EIL marks their first showing anywhere.

Wednesday, May 17, 2017

Wednesday Artist: Thomas Hirschhorn


I try to give form to what I can't accept:
that someone else can decide for me what
I should do, see or think.
~ Thomas Hirschhorn


"I see life as a possible collage," says the award-winning Swiss artist Thomas Hirschhorn, whose large-scale work, which makes use of such ordinary materials as cardboard, duct tape, and plastic bags, never hides the violence, destruction, and gruesomeness of our world. Using the collage technique to interpret and critique, to "create a new world" from what already exists, Hirschhorn aims, he says, to reach "strangers, passers-by, and people from other cultures" to engage their senses in ways that open them to questions of moral responsibility, mass production and consumerism, aesthetics, and social justice issues.

Trained as a graphic designer, Hirschhorn, who lives and works in Paris, France, and is considered both an influential and uncompromising artist, exhibits his often political work throughout the world; moreover, his work can be found in the permanent collections of such museums as the Centre Georges Pompidou in Paris, the Tate Modern in London, the Museum of Modern Art in New York City, and the Walker Art Center in Minneapolis, Minnesota. In addition to sculptures, drawing, paintings, and assemblages, Hirschhorn creates videos and art for public spaces.

Below is a Louisiana Channel interview with Hirschhorn, conducted by Kasper Bech Dyg at Kunsthal Aarhus, in Denmark, in January 2017. 



Thomas Hirschhorn at ArndtArt 21Gladstone Gallery, and Stephen Friedman Gallery

See Angelo A. Ludin's insightful film about Thomas Hirschhorn's Gramsci Monument, a project at Forest Houses in the Bronx, New York. Also read Veronica Simpson's feature article about the project, "Thomas Hirschhorn: 'The Gramsci Monument, like all monuments, is made for eternity'" at Studio International.

Tuesday, May 16, 2017

Poet Charles Coe


A "Boston Literary Light for 2014", poet Charles Coe is the author of All Sins Forgiven: poems for my parents (Leapfrog Press, 2013) and Picnic on the Moon: Poems (Leapfrog Press, 1999). Many of his poems have been published in literary periodicals and anthologies. Recipient of a poetry fellowship from the Massachusetts Cultural Council, a Fellow of St. Botolph Club of Boston, and 2016-2017 Artist-in-Residence for the City of Boston, Coe's work also has been set to music by such composers as Beth Denisch and Robert Moran ("Requiem for Edith", 2009).

Coe, co-chair of the Boston chapter of the National Writers Union, published a novella, Spin Cycles (Gemma Media), in 2014. That novella is included in Inspired Journeys: Travel Writers Searching for the Muse (The University of Wisconsin Press, 2016). 

Coe also is a jazz and popular vocalist who travels widely recording and performing his work.

Roberto Mighty's short documentary about Coe, Charles Coe: Man of Letters, follows.


Charles Coe: Man of Letters from Roberto Mighty on Vimeo.


Roberto Mighty's short Peach Pie, based on Coe's poem "Fortress", had its debut in June 2016 at the California International Shorts Festival. It also was featured at the 2016 Los Angeles Short Film Festival.


Charles Coe on FaceBook

Charles Coe, "A Son's Songs", The Boston Globe, June 16, 2013

Read Coe's poem "A Poem for Happy Endings" at Solstice magazine.

Listen to Coe read "Billy Pilgrim Reflects" on YouTube video.


Ryan Pait, "Poet-in-Residence Charles Coe Still Believes in Libraries", The Chautauquan Daily, July 12, 2016

Jane Dornbusch, "Thanks to Father's Influence, This Poet Is Well Versed in Cooking", Boston.com (The Boston Globe), October 31, 2007



Boston Mayor's Office, "Ten Artists Selected for Boston Artists-in-Residence Program", October 3, 2016

Monday, May 15, 2017

Monday Muse: John Rule, Poet


Below, Sarah Moore Chrychel relates in her 33-minute documentary, Witch Hazel Advent: The Story of an Ozark Poet (2012), the life of poet and peace/environmental activist John Rule, who, with his wife Margaret, lived off the grid in their home, "Frog Bayou", in Arkansas's Ozark Mountains. Though Margaret became ill with Alzheimer's disease, Rule cared for her under less-than-ideal conditions for almost 10 years; ultimately, he was forced to place her in a nursing home, where she died in 2009. Subsequently, Rule became an activist.

Chrychel, Rule's granddaughter, tells his story, interspersing it with his poetry and interviews. Her film was made for her master's degree in journalism, which she received from the University of Arkansas.

Chrychel, who lives in Fayetteville, is a video producer at Pryor Center for Arkansas Oral and Visual History at the University of Arkansas.


Witch Hazel Advent, The Story of an Ozark Poet from Sarah Moore Chyrchel on Vimeo.


Sarah K. Moore on FaceBook

Pryor Center on FaceBook

Ozark Poets & Writers Collective on FaceBook

Hear John Rule read some of his poetry at his former blog John Rule: An Arkansas Poet.

Sunday, May 14, 2017

Thought for the Day

Love
what could be lighter in a knapsack
~ Abdellatif Laabi
_____________________________

Quoted from Fragment of a Forgotten Genesis (1998) in In Praise of Defeat: Poems by Abdellatif Laabi (Archipelago Books, 2016), trans. Donald Nicholson-Smith, page 395

See the May 6, 2017, Thought for the Day for another quote by the poet.

Saturday, May 13, 2017

Saturday Short

Today's short is an animated version of the great Russian classic Crime and Punishment by Fyodor Dostoyevsky (1821-1881). The film, which is 29:34 minutes long, is from Polish filmmaker Piotr Dumala, who is also a feature film set designer and writer.




The film also is available on Vimeo.

My thanks to Open Culture for the film. More of Dumula's work is available at Open Culture.

Friday, May 12, 2017

All Art Friday

All Art Friday

All Art Friday Spotlights

✦ Photographer Meghann Riepenhoff, whose solo show, "Littoral Drift", took place last month at New York City's Yossi Milo Gallery, "collaborates" directly with the landscape and the ocean to make her extraordinary cyanotypes, which are described as "experimental living photographic prints". (Her Artist Statement explains how she used the elements in the Littoral Drift series. Her catalogue has sold out.) Visit Riepenhoff's Website to view other series in her portfolio.

Meghann Riepenhoff on FaceBook

✦ Is David Hockney in "digital decline"? Olivia McEwan makes her case in the affirmative in "The Digital Decline of David Hockney" at Hyperallergic.

✦ The Hudson River Museum, in Yonkers, New York, has published Wyeth Wonderland: Josephine Douet Envisions Andrew Wyeth's World. Available at the museum shop or online, the catalogue (for the exhibition concluding May 14) features 37 color images of Douet's photographs and Wyeth's watercolors and drawings, all paired with comments by the photographer or quotations from the artist. It also includes an essay by museum curator Laura Vookles and the transcript of a conversation with Douet about her photography project and the museum's exhibition.


Cover Art

Josephine Douet Website (See her series The Secret Sits, which features a selection of photographs of the people and places of Chadds Ford, Pennsylvania.)

✦ A 258-page monograph, Vermeer: The Complete Works (April 7, 2017), edited by Karl Schutz of Kunsthistorisches Museum, is available as a new edition from Taschen. (Fold-out images from the book can be seen at the title link above.) The book, in English, includes new photographs of many of the artworks and details about Vermeer's artistic style and process. (The exhibition "Vermeer and the Masters of Genre Painting", continuing through May 22 at the Louvre, Paris, France, features its own catalogue.)

Cover Art

✦ To improve accessibility to its photographic collection, including prints acquired in 2016 from Bradford Media Museum, London's Victoria and Albert Museum will be expanding its photographic gallery space in the northeast wing of its South Kensington location, beginning in the fall of 2018. Read "Announcement of new Photography Centre" (pdf) in the Press section of the museum's Website and The Guardian article "V&A to Open New Galleries for Photos Acquired from Bradford Museum".

✦ Pop artist James Rosenquist died last month (March 31) at the age of 83. In 2007, he delivered the Clarice Smith Lecture at the Smithsonian American Art Museum. I was in the audience that evening, and recall well his talk, "Fine Art is Not a Career". It was not dull! SAAM, which owns about a dozen Rosenquist artworks, recently uploaded the lecture to YouTube. You'll find it below. (It's a bit over an hour long. Try to find the time to listen and watch. I doubt you'll be disappointed.)



James Rosenquist Obituary at The New York Times

Exhibitions Here and There

✭ Alabama's Birmingham Museum of Art is presenting "Third Space / Shifting Conversations About Contemporary Art", the first large exhibition of contemporary art from the museum's own collection, through January 6, 2019. More than 100 works, including paintings, sculpture, drawings, photography, and videos, are on display. Among the artists represented are Kerry James Marshall, Ebony G. Patterson, Mark Bradford, Jose Bedia, Thornton Dial, and William Christenberry. Rural Studio has created for the show an artwork that serves as a gathering space for reflection and contemplation; when the exhibition concludes, the structure will be repurposed. A series of artist-and-curator talks spaced over the two-year exhibition is a key component of the show.

An exhibition SmartGuide is available for use with mobile devices.

ArtsBMA on FaceBook and Instagram

✭ In Chicago, the Loyola University Museum of Art continues its exhibition of Peter Gelker's "Whirligigs". Approximately 20 of the hand-turned or wind-driven devices created by Gelker, who is also a psychiatrist and a psychoanalyst, are on display. The exhibition, which addresses such subjects as religious beliefs and mythology, runs through June 3.

In the video below, made in 2015, Gelker explains one of his devices:


Watch a documentary about Gelker's whirligigs. A book, Whirligigs: Minds in Motion, is available. Also see Whirligigs: The Art of Peter Gelker (Grand Central Press, 2015) by Simon J. Bonner and Lynn Gamwell.

LUMA on FaceBook, Instagram, and YouTube

Virginia Fifield's highly realistic, larger-than-life charcoal drawings of animals and the natural world can be seen through May 20 at Florida's Coral Springs Museum of Art. Fifield, who lives in South Florida, has received many awards for her exceptional drawings, including the 2015 International Drawing Competition sponsored by Drawing magazine. Last year, she was featured on the PBS series Art Loft (see the feature on YouTube). See Fifield's portfolio, especially her Contemplations series.


Virginia Fifield, Specimen, 2014
Charcoal on Museum Board
30" x 60"

Defining a Moment: Virginia Fifield on Vimeo

Virginia Fifield on FaceBook

Coral Springs Museum of Art on FaceBook and Instagram

✭ Peter Bynum's immersive, multi-media installation of illuminated paintings is on view in "Illuminations of the Sacred Forms" at the Hudson Valley Center for Contemporary Art, Peekskill, New York. In addition to the paintings, the solo exhibition, which continues through December 17, includes additional multi-media components of soundscapes and video projections that visitors can listen to or watch while seated in curtained booths. Credited with creating a new technique of painting with light, Bynum exhibits internationally and has work in both public and private collections in the United States, Europe, Asia, and Latin America.


The publication Illumination of the Sacred Forms accompanies the exhibition.


Peter Bynum on FaceBook

HVCCA on FaceBook and YouTube

✭ The Philbrook Museum of Art, Tulsa, Oklahoma, has mounted a show of nearly 200 Native American art objects, including basketry, jewelry, paintings, and pottery, as well as clothing, moccasins, and objects used daily and in ceremonies. The exhibition, "Identity & Inspiration: 20th Century Native American Art", focuses on individual artists and their inspirations, their creative processes, and their creation of innovative forms and designs. It concludes August 31.

Also on view: the HOTTEA installation. The large, original yarn installation, which fills the museum rotunda and mezzanine, is up through November 12. (See other examples of the artist's work on Flickr and Vimeo. The artist's real name is Eric Rieger. Read "Meet Eric Rieger aka HOTTEA the Mpls. Yarnbomber".)

Philbrook Museum on FaceBook and Instagram

Thursday, May 11, 2017

Thursday's Three on Art

Today, Thursday's Three spotlights a trio of forthcoming art books.

Arthur Dove: A Reassessment (Lucia|Marquand, June 27, 2017) ~ Drawing on previously unpublished material, Alan Pensler and Suzanne Mullett Smith reevaluate American modernist painter Arthur Dove (1880-1946). In addition to examining Dove's development as an artist while living in Westport, Connecticut, from 1910 to 1920, the book features information about Dove's career as a chicken farmer, his familial relationships, and the influence of his Christian background on some of his best-known works. Mullett Smith, who worked with the artist from 1943 to 1944 and was his biographer, assembled the catalogue raisonne.

Cover Art

Arthur Dove at The Art Story and Heilbrunn Timeline of Art History

Peter Halley: The Complete 1980s Paintings (JRP|Ringier, June 27, 2017) ~ Art historian Cara Jordan and Peter Halley contribute the text for this catalogue raisonne of the contemporary painter's works, all of which Halley made between 1980 and 1989. Founder of Index magazine and active in New York art circles, Halley painted during the period discussed some 186 geometric works, using Day-Glo acrylics and Roll-a-Tex texture additive. In addition to examining the evolution of Halley's ideas about abstract painting and the use of motifs, the book includes an illustrated biography and an anthology of seminal texts written by Halley in the 1980s. The editors are Clement Dirie and Cara Jordan.

Cover Art


Anselm Kiefer: Works from the Hall Collection (Skira Rizzoli, June 20, 2017) ~ Written by art historian Bonnie Clearwater, British curator and art historian Sir Norman Rosenthal, and MASS MoCA director Joe Thompson, this book both documents and celebrates major Kiefer artist books, works on paper, paintings, sculptures, and large-scale installations from the late 1960s to the present; many of the works are being reproduced for the first time. The catalogue constitutes the first survey of one of the world's largest collections of Kiefer work: the Hall and Hall Art Foundation, New York City.


Cover Art

An exhibition of Kiefer's work currently is on view through November 26 at MASS MoCa.


Note: The Toronto Art Book Fair takes place June 15-18.

Wednesday, May 10, 2017

David Lanier: 'Why I Went to the Woods'

The most important things that we have are having friends 
who care about you, having food you can go to eat at a church, 
and just a safe place to sleep.
~ David Lanier

David Lanier used  to be a sportswriter and special correspondent for the Arkansas Democrat-Gazette; for more than 20 years he covered the Arkansas Razorbacks. "Circumstances happened," he said, "and I ended up not having that job anymore." Recognizing that his loss gave him an opportunity to write about homelessness in Fayetteville, he "ended up living it." In the documentary short below, by Sarah Moore Chyrchel, Lanier tells his moving story.


Why I Went to the Woods: David Lanier's Story from Sarah K. Moore on Vimeo.

(My thanks to Aubrey James Shepherd and Shadowleaves Company for the video link.)

David Lanier on FaceBook

Of Interest


Blair Jackson, "In the Shadows of the American Dream", the free weekly, September 29, 2011



Tuesday, May 9, 2017

Adele Myers's 'Birdfall' (Poetry Film)

Following is filmmaker and artist Adele Myers's commissioned poetry film Birdfall (2014), which is based on Danica Ognjenovic's poem of the same title, which received a commendation in the 2013 Naional Poetry Competition. The text of the poem is found at the Poetry Society.


An interview with Myers about the creation of the videopoem can be found at Liberated Words, co-founded by Lucy English and Sarah Tremlett.

Adele Myers on Vimeo

Danica Ognjenovic on Vimeo

Monday, May 8, 2017

Monday Muse: 'Finnegans Wake' - Lit as Music


The internet almost seems to have been invented to assist
in understanding the Wake.
~ Derek Attridge, University of York



Art by Sara Jewell*

Can anything be more bizarre than an unabridged audiobook-musical adaptation of Finnegans Wake, the bane of literary-inclined high school and college students? Read on.

Initiated in 2014, the project Waywords and Meansigns has set to music for the third time James Joyce's 628-page Finnegans Wake (1939). Its laudable goals, given the (ahem) difficulty of the text, are "to make the novel more accessible to newcomers[,] and to create a version of the text that appeals to dedicated listeners, students, scholars, and Wake-obsessed people everywhere." Co-founded by Derek Pyle and Kelley Kipperman (she left Waywords in 2015), the project accommodates "everybody", according to its Website, including "those totally ignorant of the Wake, and anyone generally adventurous" enough to even consider making an individual submission. 

The first unabridged version, comprising 17 chapters and involving 17 musicians, premiered in 2015 on May 4, the 76th anniversary of the Wake's publication. The second edition, also in 17 chapters, came out in 2016, on February 2, James Joyce's birthday. The 2017 edition, released May 4, and the project's final large-group edition, features more than 100 musicians, readers, and artists from 15 countries. (Read the press release.)

Visitors to the project's Website can stream and download, as well as share, all audio for free. (Waywords and Meansigns is based in Canada, where the novel has public domain status. Audio is distributed via Creative Commons licensing.)

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* The graphic at the head of the post is by Sara Jewell, the project's design and communications specialist.

Information About James Joyce and Finnegans Wake (Also see the page for Reading Resources.)


Waywords and Meansigns News (You can find reviews, interviews with Derek Pyle, track premieres, and other project information here.)

Waywords and Meansigns on FaceBook and Soundcloud



See a linearized edition of Finnegans Wake by Contemporary Literature Press.

Finnegans Wake at Project Gutenberg and Internet Archive

Read Allison Meier's feature article about the project at Hyperallergic: "Setting the Puzzling Language of James Joyce's Finnegans Wake to Music" (April 5, 2017).

Sunday, May 7, 2017

Thought for the Day

What color does a secret have?
~ Abdellatif Laabi
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Quoted from excerpt from Casablanca Spleen (1996) in In Praise of Defeat: Poems by Abdellatif Laabi (Archipelago Books, 2016), trans. Donald Nicholson-Smith, p. 341

Abdellatif Laabi (b. 1942), Moroccan Poet, Novelist, Playwright, Translator, Political Activist

Abdellatif Laabi Website (The site is available in French and Spanish also.)

Abdellatif Laabi on FaceBook

Saturday, May 6, 2017

Saturday Short


Why, who makes much of a miracle?
As to me I know of nothing else but miracles,...

Today's short is Poem for a House | David and Gladys Wright House. The poem is Walt Whitman's "Poem of Perfect Miracles", which first appeared in the second edition of the poet's Leaves of Grass (1856).

Located near the base of Camelback Mountain in Phoenix, Arizona, the David Wright House is a late-career residence by Frank Lloyd Wright for Wright's son and daughter-in-law. It is considered a masterpiece.




Take a virtual tour of the David Wright House featuring archival photos.

Also see a video about the David Wright House.

David Wright House on FaceBook, Instagram, and YouTube

Frank Lloyd Wright Foundation