Thursday, September 20, 2018

New Artist Watch Feature at Escape Into Life


Gail Nadeau, Collage No. 1

Gail Nadeau, Collage No. 2

© Gail Nadeau

PLEASE DO NOT COPY IMAGES

This month's Artist Watch column at Escape Into Life presents images from illustrator Gail Nadeau's lovely Dresses series. 

Gail, who grew up on her grandfather's farm in Voorheesville, New York, is best known for her photography and mixed media work, which includes 100 Angels, a portfolio of small, over-painted photographs, and Notebook, a series of enlarged and re-worked images originally collaged in a watercolor notebook.

Today's Artist Watch presents seven images from Gail's Dresses series, her Artist Statement, and a brief biography.

Sunday, September 16, 2018

Thought for the Day

[. . .] the edge is a creative place to be—
a place from which to see the whole field—
and to empathize with those who are not sure where they belong.
~ Barbara Brown Taylor
_____________________________

Quoted from "A Conversation with Barbara Brown Taylor", Interview, Image, No. 97, Summer 2018

Barbara Brown Taylor, Writer, Speaker, and "Spiritual Contrarian" (Episcopal Priest)

Taylor's forthcoming book is Holy Envy: Finding God in the Faith of Others (HarperOne, April 2019).

Barbara Brown Taylor on FaceBook

Sunday, September 9, 2018

Thought for the Day


What seems most outlandish in our autobiography
is what really happened.
~ Steve Abbot
_____________________________

Quoted from Steve Abbott, "Elegy", in Noel Black, Uselysses (Ugly Duckling Presse, 2011)

Noel Black, Writer-Producer, Poet

Steve Abbott (1943 - 1992), Poet, Critic, Editor, Novelist, Artist

Sunday, September 2, 2018

Thought for the Day


[O]ne of the duties of the spirit is joy, and another is serenity . . . .
~ Thornton Wilder

_________________________________

Quoted from Thornton Wilder's 1930 Letter to Paul Stephenson

Thornton Wilder (1897 - 1975), American Playwright and Novelist



Robin G. Wilder and Jackson R. Bryer (Eds.), The Selected Letters of Thornton Wilder (HarperCollins, 2010) 

Thornton Wilder Letters, 1927 - 1965, Special Collections, PennState University Libraries

Robert Gottlieb. "Man of Letters: The Case of Thornton Wilder", The New Yorker, January 7, 2013

Richard H. Goldstone, Interview with Thornton Wilder, The Art of Fiction No. 16, The Paris Review, Winter 1956

Sunday, August 26, 2018

Thought for the Day


If I had the right dream anything could be possible.
~ Jeffrey Joe Nelson
___________________________

Quoted from Jeffrey Joe Nelson, "Relaxing in Armor" in Road of a Thousand Wonders (Ugly Duckling Presse, 2011), page 70


Sunday, August 19, 2018

Thought for the Day

You can never
persuade one person that another
is a liar. People prefer the liar.
~ Fanny Howe
____________________________

Quoted from Fanny Howe, "Passage" in Come and See (Graywolf Press, 2011), page 27

Fanny Howe, Award-Winning Poet, Novelist, Short Story Writer

Interviews with Fanny Howe at BOMB (2018), divedapper (2016), LitHub (2016), and The Paris Review (2016)

Thursday, August 16, 2018

New Artist Watch Feature at Escape Into Life



David Ehrlich, Singing for My Supper*

© David Ehrlich

PLEASE DO NOT COPY IMAGE

We are in summer's fullness, and that means we're celebrating our annual Dog Days Artist Watch at Escape Into Life. This month's feature presents the work of fine art photographer David Ehrlich, whom I've had the pleasure to meet and watch in action with his subjects.

David, who got a start in photography at age 13, operates a portrait studio in Arlington, Virginia.

Today's Artist Watch column showcases eight images from David's portfolio of dog portraits, as well as a brief Artist Statement and a biography. Make a point to see all the images for the column and then head over to David's Website (it links to his Dog Art Gallery) for more treats that will take your mind off August's heat.

___________________________

* The captions given to David's images are my own (with his permission).

Sunday, August 12, 2018

Thought for the Day


To watch a heart being emptied
of trust and desire is to see something
elemental: not a worm's turning
but a tide's. [. . .]
~ Sam Willetts
_________________________

Quoted from Sam Willetts, "You and St. Kevin and the Birds" in New Light for the Old Dark (Cape Poetry, 2010), page 48 (The collection, Willetts's first, was shortlisted for the Forward Prize, the Costa Prize, and the T.S. Eliot Prize.)

Sam Willetts, English Poet

Sam Willetts Profiles at Next Generation Poets 2014 (Poetry Book Society) and Poetry Foundation

Saturday, August 11, 2018

Saturday Short


Film Poster

Inspired by Andrew Solomon's excellent book Far from the Tree: Parents, Children, and the Search for Identity (Scribner, reprint 2013), the documentary of the same name currently is making rounds in theatres across the country. An IFC Films production directed by Rachel Dretzin, the documentary offers an insightful look at "exceptional" children and the challenges they present to their "ordinary" families.

Here's the official trailer:


IFC Films on FaceBook

Tuesday, August 7, 2018

Book Spine Poems


Following are 18 collections of poetry, some published this year, whose titles are revealed in book spine poems. The author of each collection is noted, line by line. (Links are to the books available on Amazon or through the publishers.)

1

A Spell to Bless the Silence
Long Love
Esperanza and Hope

Line 1 John Montague
Line 2 Judith Barrington
Line 3 Esperanza Snyder

2

If You Have to Go
Box
A Memory of the Future

Line 1 Katie Ford
Line 2 Sue D. Burton
Line 3 Elizabeth Spires

3

A Quarter of an Hour
Of Marriage
Beyond All Bearing

Line 1 Leanne O'Sullivan
Line 2 Nicole Cooley
Line 3 Susan Delaney Spear

4

Pulling Down the Heavens
Strong-Armed Angels
Secure Your Own Mask

Line 1 Barbara Bloom
Line 2 David Allen Sullivan
Line 3 Shaindel Beers

5

bury it
Anything on Earth
Invented by the Night

Line 1 Sam Sax
Line 2 Ken Weisner
Line 3 Len Anderson

6

Forgive the Body This Failure
Someone is Breathing
During the Music

Line 1 Blas Falconer
Line 2 J. Morris
Line 3 R. Soos

Sunday, August 5, 2018

Thought for the Day

The past is set in daylight, and it can become a torch we can carry 
into the night that is the future.
~ Rebecca Solnit
____________________________

Quoted from Rebecca Solnit, Hope in the Dark: Untold Histories, Wild Possibilities (Haymarket Books, 3rd Ed., 2016), page xxvi

Sunday, July 29, 2018

Thought for the Day


Loss is the self emptying back into silence.
~ David Wevill
________________________

Quoted from David Wevill, "In the Jardin des Plantes" in A Christ of the Ice-Floes (Macmillan, 1966; Tavern Books, 2016), page 83 (Wevill is a marvelous poet but, I would hazard, largely unfamiliar to many readers of poetry. The Tavern Books reprint offers an excellent first-experience of his work. Also see the reprints of Wevill's Where the Arrow Falls and Collected Translations, both part of Tavern's The Living Library; see, in addition, To Build My Shadow a Fire: The Poetry and Translations of David Wevill (Truman State University Press, 2010), edited by Michael McGrieff.

David Wevill, Award-Winning Poet, Translator, Editor, Retired Teacher (University of Texas at Austin)


Sunday, July 22, 2018

Thought for the Day

. . . community builds when a kindness is given
and a voice is heard, and when something is built 
together that can't be built alone.
~ Mark Nepo
_____________________________

Quoted from Mark Nepo Interview, "A Conversation with Mark Nepo About His New Book, More Together Than Alone: Discovering the Power and Spirit of Community In Our Lives and in the World" (Atria Books, July 17, 2018) 

Mark Nepo, Poet, Spiritual Writer and Guide

Mark Nepo on FaceBook

Thursday, July 19, 2018

New Artist Watch Feature at Escape Into Life



Mark R. Pugh, Boy at the Edge of the World, 2018
Oil on Panel
30" x 48"

© Mark R. Pugh

PLEASE DO NOT COPY IMAGE


I'm delighted to introduce in today's Artist Watch column at Escape Into Life the award-winning painter Mark R. Pugh.

Born in Utah, Mark, who holds a bachelor's degree in psychology, works full-time as an artist. Instructed in art at the Bridge Academy in Provo, Mark has developed a style that, in his words, draws from both realism and surrealism to create a dreamlike aesthetic. His work continues to betray his early interests in, indeed a passion for, fantasy and illustration.

In addition to showcasing nine images of Mark's strong work, today's Artist Watch includes Mark's Artist Statement and a brief biography. Enjoy!

Sunday, July 15, 2018

Thought for the Day


. . . When you build a wall between yourself and others,
you are basically saying that you have stopped listening
and seeing. You have cut off contact. And how can there
be understanding without contact?
~ Helon Habila
__________________________________

Quoted from Helon Habila, "The Separation Wall" in Kingdom of Olives and Ash: Writers Confront the Occupation (Harper-Perennial, 2017), Edited by Michael Chabon an Ayelet Waldman (This is an excellent, eye-opening series of essays.)

Helon Habila, Award-Winning Novelist, Editor, and Publisher (Cordite Books) of African Crime and Detective Stories

Helon Habila's books include Oil on Water, Measuring Time, Waiting for an Angel, and, most recently, The Chibok Girls: The Boko Haram Kidnappings and Islamist Militancy in Nigeria.

Saturday, July 14, 2018

Saturday Short

Today's Saturday Short is a video of poet Dana Gioia reciting his poem "The Stars Now Rearrange Themselves", from Daily Horoscope, Gioia's first poetry collection, which was published in 1986. (Additional poems from that collection and other books can be read in the Poems section of Gioia's Website.)


The video was made by Blank Verse Films, which produces a new poetry video weekly.

Dana Gioia on FaceBook and Twitter

Tuesday, July 10, 2018

Dateline: Syria (Poem)


Dateline: Syria, June 25, 2018

how to explain
with unwilling lips

how to un-see
the flies still harvesting

the boy being raised
from the indelicate balancing

of body meeting metal


first there is the turning away
the fire on soft skin spreading

and the quickening cold
of two small hands

insufficient protection
against what rains

from the war zone's drones


amid this indecent violence
comes love of the father

for his only son


the child who one last time
returns home

wrapped in a blanket
strapped to the handlebars

too wide to hug close
what remains

behind stone-black motorcycle exhaust

© 2018 Maureen E. Doallas

This poem is my response to a deeply moving photograph out of Syria of a father attempting to maneuver his motorcycle while trying to balance on the handlebars the body of his preschool-age son. During a bombing by Assad's military forces, the boy sustained injuries so great he could not be helped by medics in the area, who lacked any of the necessary supplies to even attempt to save his life.

Sunday, July 8, 2018

Thought for the Day


Every author does not write for every reader.
~ Samuel Johnson
_________________________________

Quoted in Jane Yolen's Take Joy: A Writer's Guide to Loving the Craft (Writer's Digest Books, 2006)

Samuel Johnson (1709-1784), English Poet, Essayist, Editor, Critic, Lexicographer

Jane Yolen, American Writer of Fantasy and Science Fiction, Children's Books, and Poetry

Sunday, July 1, 2018

Thought for the Day


Why do you stay in prison /
when the door is so wide open?
~ Rumi
__________________________________

Quoted from Rumi's Poem "A Community of the Spirit", Translated by Coleman Barks

Read the text of the poem at The Line Break blog. The poem is included in Poetry of Presence: An Anthology of Mindfulness Poems (Grayson Books, 2017), edited by Phyllis Cole-Dai and Ruby R. Wilson. (Watch the trailer for the latter, which is a particularly lovely collection of poems. Also see Poetry of Presence Website.)

Sunday, June 24, 2018

Thought for the Day


It is terrible to survive/
as consciousness/
buried in the dark earth.
~ Louise Gluck
______________________________

Quoted from Louise Gluck, "The Wild Iris" in The Wild Iris (ECCO Press/HarperCollins, 1993) (This collection won the 1993 Pulitzer Prize.)

Louise Gluck, U.S. Poet Laureate, 2003-2004

Louise Gluck Profiles at Academy of American Poets and Poetry Foundation

Gluck published American Originality: Essays on Poetry in 2017.  Her most recent collection of poems is Faithful and Virtuous Night (Farrar, Straus and Giroux), which received the 2014 National Book Award for Poetry.

Thursday, June 21, 2018

New Artist Watch Feature at Escape Into Life


Manal Deeb, Cordoba, 2018
Acrylic and Watercolor on Canvas
24" x 30"
© Manal Deeb

PLEASE DO NOT COPY IMAGE

When I first came across Manal Deeb's paintings on LinkedIn, I knew instantly I wanted to invite her to be featured in my monthly column at Escape Into Life. Today, I am pleased to say, I am showcasing her work in Artist Watch.

For Manal Deeb, who holds a bachelor degree in interdisciplinary studies in the psychology of art, women's faces, along with calligraphy, feature prominently in her multi-layered and mixed media paintings. Described by one art critic as a "Palestinian artist who paints life" in visual metaphors, she follows no particular school of art. Her subjects include feminism, identity, religion, and philosophy, among other interests.

You'll find in today's new Artist Watch column images of seven of Manal's paintings, her Artist Statement, and a brief biography, as well as her social media links. If you are in Virginia, plan a visit to Workhouse Arts Center in Lorton, where you'll find Manal working in her studio, #1011 in building 10.

Sunday, June 17, 2018

Thought for the Day

Light every morning dawns through the trees. Surely
this is worth more than one life.
~ Marilyn Nelson
__________________________________

Quoted from Concluding Lines of "A Charmed Life" from Carver: a Life in Poems (Front Street/Boyds Mills Press, 2001), by Marilyn Nelson, Winner, 2017 NSK Neustadt Prize for Children's Literature (University of Oklahoma/World Literature Today)*

Marilyn Nelson, American Poet, Children's Book Author, Translator; Chancellor, Academy of American Poets; Poet-in-Residence, Cathedral of St. John the Divine; Professor Emeritus of English, University of Connecticut; Former Poet Laureate of Connecticut (2001-2006)

* An excerpt from "A Charmed Life" including the quoted lines is in Marilyn Nelson, "Bowled Over — A Life with Poem: The 2017 NSK Prize Keynote", World Literature Today, March 2018.

Hayan Charara, "Reinventing and Reimagining the World: A Tribute to Marilyn Nelson", World Literature Today, March 2018

Sarah Rebecca Warren, "Telling It Slant: A Conversation with Marilyn Nelson", World Literature Today, March 2018

Saturday, June 16, 2018

Saturday Short

Today's short is a quick look at the award-winning and beautifully hand-illustrated Gorogoa (Annapurna Interactive, 2017), an interactive game created by Jason Roberts in which players move panels of art to "read" the storybook and solve the puzzle.




Jason Roberts on FaceBook

Jason Roberts on Vimeo

Sunday, June 10, 2018

Thought for the Day

Closing the distance between one's self and others opens us
as it breaks down barriers. Learning how to do that, in one's
art and in one's life, is the true freedom. It helps to lead us
out of suffering. It's an act of love. . . .
~ Margaret Gibson
____________________________

Quoted from "A Conversation with Margaret Gibson", Image Journal, Spring 2018, No. 96, page 63

Margaret Gibson, Poet; Author, Most Recently, of Not Hearing the Wood Thrush* (forthcoming September 2018)

* Read a selection of poems from the collection.

Margaret Gibson Profiles at Academy of American Poets and Poetry Foundation

Saturday, June 9, 2018

Saturday Short

Today's short is the launch trailer for the documentary Whistle Words (Red Sparks Films), a film that traces how women with cancer reclaim  their voices; specifically it follows poet Charlotte Matthews's experience of breast cancer, diagnosed as stage 3, and of her post-treatment efforts to reclaim through her writing her sense of self. The trailer is based on Matthews's poem "The Greatest Show on Earth". Matthews's third book of poems is Whistle What Can't Be Said (Unicorn Press, 2016).

Additional film clips are available at the Red Sparks link above.


Read Nin Andrews's interview with Matthews at The Best American Poetry Blog (June 4, 2018).


Charlotte Matthews on FaceBook



Whistle Words on FaceBook

Red Sparks Films on FaceBook

Tuesday, June 5, 2018

You Swim Until You Can't (Poem)


You Swim Until You Can't

      for Scott Hutchinson,
         lead singer, Frightened Rabbit

You swim until you can't
see land. So gone from shore

we become a foreign substance
in your eye you can neither rub

nor let alone.

Not meant for easy oblivion.
Not meant for that long slog

to eternity where you pledged
your forever presence to love

once everything's been worked out.

We hear no distress call, eye
no hand signaling how you'll go

missing from what some called
a messy life. Water sweeps away

even a trace of your footsteps.

© 2018 Maureen E. Doallas

____________________________________

Scott Hutchinson (b. November 20, 1981) died May 10, 2018. Just 36, he left his last words in a tweet: ". . . I'm away now. Thanks."

The poem's title and opening line are a variation on "Swim Until You Can't See Land" from the Glasgow band's album The Winter of Mixed Drinks (2010).

Read Marc Hogan's May 14, 2018, article at Pitchfork, "Why Losing Frightened Rabbit's Scott Hutchinson Hurts So Much". Also see "Frightened Rabbit's Scott Hutchinson Dead at 36", also at Pitchfork.

Sunday, June 3, 2018

Thought for the Day

[. . .] everyone's grief is different, and [. . .] differs in
in small and subtle ways, according to the circumstances of loss.
~ Richard Lloyd Parry
____________________________

Quoted from Richard Lloyd Parry's excellent Ghosts of the Tsunami: Death and Life in Japan's Disaster Zone (MCD, 2017)

Richard Lloyd Parry, Asia Editor, The Times, Foreign Asia Correspondent; and Author

Richard Lloyd Parry on FaceBook and Twitter

Saturday, June 2, 2018

Saturday Short

. . . your voice is not a feather I can hold//
but a thought i draw/
across my  throat when I close my eyes—//. . . 

Today, Saturday Short brings you "Asterism", a film of a poem by Keith S. Wilson presented at MotionPoems in partnership with Cave Canem.



A selection of Wilson's poems is available at his Website.

Sunday, May 27, 2018

Thought for the Day


To conquer a beast, you must first make it beautiful.
~ Chinese Proverb
_______________________________

A variation on the proverb is used as the title of Sarah Wilson's book First, We Make the Beast Beautiful: A New Journey Through Anxiety (Dey Street Books, April 2018). Wilson first came across the proverb while reading Kay Redfield Jamison's An Unquiet Mind.

Sarah Wilson, Author; Entrepreneur; Founder, IQuitSugar (Wellness Site); Former Journalist

Sarah Wilson on FaceBook

Tuesday, May 22, 2018

One Story of Gaza (Poem)

One Story of Gaza

You never leave the same
as when you arrive.

Your mother's womb is
no longer safe from

bombs or bullets, and Israel

still cuts the grass. The buffer
zone is expanded, the fences

reinforced. What once was
taken — house by house —

calls for "deliberately inflicted
life-changing injuries."

Your return to land beyond
the pocked, sand-dusted berms

is deemed an "infiltration."

*

You stand out, are spotted.
They fire — no warning given.

You tumble, get up,
persist in your "Great March"

against their appropriation.
At the barbed border

dividing them from you,
wherever they aim,

somebody else goes down.

*

The body of ten-month-old
Layla Ghandour is carried

home from the hospital,
placed in a pink plastic basin,

washed by the light of cellphone,
wrapped in white shroud wrapped

in your flag. So small this bundle
in red and green, white and black.

*

On this, the year's bloodiest
day, you hear too well the wails

rising amid struggles amid smoke.
Sixty times one more of you falls.

Don't take this as your call to prayer,
you tell your mourning wives.

"It's God's will." "Have faith in God."

*

To be displaced is "Nakba."
What happens at their fences

where everything is used
to stop you and you and you

is catastrophe times two
on this singular sliver of land,

this Gaza stripped of peace
this land denying your claim,

and roused again to resistance.

© Maureen E. Doallas
__________________________________

The inspiration for this poem and some of the quoted material is "What the Gaza Protests Portend" at New York Books Daily, May 15, 2018.

The phrase "still cuts the grass" refers to an Israeli strategy of tolerating a level of violence from Gaza and then re-engaging, without ever finding a solution or creating peace; in other words, maintaining the status quo. I first came across the description in a 2014 Vox article about Palestinian fatalities.

Read my other poem "They Call It 'A Great Day'."

Sunday, May 20, 2018

Thought for the Day

I still don't know what dogs know.
~ Chase Twichell
___________________________

Quoted from Chase Twichell, "The Second Arrow", The American Poetry Review, May/June 2018, page 38

Chase Twichell, Award-Winning Poet and Teacher, Author Most Recently of Things As It is (Forthcoming from Copper Canyon Press, October 2018)



Chase Twichell on FaceBook

Saturday, May 19, 2018

Saturday Short


Cover Art

Today's short is a trailer for Roshi Joan Halifax's new book Standing at the Edge: Finding Freedom Where Fear and Courage Meet (Flatiron Books, May 2018).

Joan Halifax, Ph.D., Zen Priest, Buddhist Teacher, Anthropologist, Writer; Founder, Abbot, Head Teacher of Upaya Institute and Zen Center, Santa Fe, New Mexico

Joan Halifax at Flatiron Books/MacMillan

Joan Halifax on FaceBook 

Watch the trailer at YouTube.

Thursday, May 17, 2018

New Artist Watch Feature at Escape Into Life


Carola Schapals, Sink Down the Green, 2018
Oil on Canvas
140 cm x 170 cm
© Carola Schapals

PLEASE DO NOT COPY IMAGE


I am delighted to present the work of painter Carola Schapals in today's new Artist Watch column at the international online arts magazine Escape Into Life.

Currently a resident of Bremen, Germany, Carola, who holds a master's degree, exhibits widely in Germany as well as The Netherlands and in Spain. She has received many awards, including an artist residency at Vincent van Gogh's birthplace in Zundert, The Netherlands. In addition, she is represented in numerous private and public art collections.

Today's Artist Watch features images of eight of Carola's beautifully painted canvases, an Artist Statement, and a brief biography.

Tuesday, May 15, 2018

They Call It 'A Great Day' (Poem)

They Call it 'A Great Day'

When will they learn?
None is a David against Goliath,

and "every country has an obligation
to defend its borders."*

The man in the wheelchair
readying his slingshot takes a hit

before his stone can find a mark.

The youth desperately backhanding
his tennis racket lobs too late

to return the sniper's serve.

Ivanka stands clapping — she's sixty
miles away — while Mnuchin pulls off

the big reveal: the president's name
writ larger than the thing it dedicates.

We see it all, live, this Nakba, the burning
tires, the streams of tear gas, a baby

grounded, inhaling dirty smoke in Gaza.

What is not breached is the barb wire
fence that both contains and ignites

these thousands of sources of injury.
The women in black abaya still wave

their colorful flags, their sons flinging
projectiles. Kicking up a dust cloud,

one of them even risks a selfie.

© Maureen E. Doallas
____________________

* Benjamin Netanyahu at the dedication of the U.S. Embassy in Jerusalem and the protests in Gaza.

"Nakba" is "Catastrophe".

Sunday, May 13, 2018

Thought for the Day

What happens at eye level gets its start in the depths.
~ Dan Chiasson
_______________________________

Quoted from Dan Chiasson, "Jenny Xie Writes a Sight Seer's guide to the Self", The New Yorker, May 7, 2018

Dan Chiasson, Poet, Critic, Professor English at Wellesley College

Jenny Xie, Award-Winning Poet, Author of Eye Level (Graywolf Press, 2018)

Jenny Xie on FaceBook and Twitter

Saturday, May 12, 2018

Saturday Short

Today's short is the beautifully conceived and produced Ama, by Julie Gautier of Les films engloutis. Silent except for the accompanying music, "Rain in your black eyes" by Ezio Boss, the film was choreographed by Ophelie Longquet and edited by Jerome Lozano. It premiered in March 2018 at International Women's Day events. Gautier's notes about the short indicate that its story is one that "everyone can interpret in [his or her] own way"; it is dedicated to "all the women of the world."

Gautier is a French film director and an underwater cinematographer who holds a French record in free diving. Her collaborator and partner is Guillaume Nery, the world champion in free diving. Gautier and Nery co-directed the Beyonce music video Runnin.

AMA - a short film by Julie Gautier from Les films engloutis on Vimeo.

Julie Gautier on FaceBook

Guillaume Nery on FaceBook

Sunday, May 6, 2018

Thought for the Day


Only when we see at an angle
do we have a chance of seeing the truth.
~ Jed Perl
___________________________

Quoted from Jed Perl, "The Art of Elsewhere" (Review of "Gorey's Worlds at the Wadsworth Atheneum Museum of Art, February 10 - May 6, 2018) in The New York Review of Books (Art Issue), May 10, 2018, page 10

Edward Gorey (1925-2000), American Artist and Writer

Wadsworth Atheneum Museum of Art

Saturday, May 5, 2018

Saturday Short

Today's short, Two Hands, from Crazy Boat Pictures is a documentary about American concert pianist Leon Fleisher and his extraordinary efforts to regain a sense of purpose in life after losing the use of his right hand to the neurological condition known as focal dystonia while at the height of his career.

Today, Fleisher, whose ability to perform with two hands returned in the mid-1990s, teaches at the Peabody Institute of The Johns Hopkins University, Baltimore, Maryland, and performs, conducts, and holds master classes throughout the world.


Leon Fleisher - Two Hands from Thomas Duperre on Vimeo.

Leon Fleisher on FaceBook

Tuesday, May 1, 2018

Tracy K. Smith on 'Staying Human'


Leaflet Cover 

One of the only defenses against the degradations of our market-
driven culture is to cleave to language that fosters humility, 
awareness of complexity, commitment to the lives of others, 
and resistance to the overly easily and the patently false. 
Poetry is one vehicle for this humanizing, 
reanimating version of language. . . .
~ U.S. Poet Laureate Tracy K. Smith

Our national Poet Laureate Tracy K. Smith, now in her second term, discussed her first term with The Washington Post's Book World editor Ron Charles on April 19, 2018, following her address "Staying Human: Poetry in the Age of Technology". Below you'll find a portion of the interview, which includes Smith's readings of poems by Laura Kasischke and John Yau. For the complete recording, check the Library of Congress Website.


Sunday, April 29, 2018

Thought for the Day

I am empowered by the idea of love as the will
to extend oneself to nurture one's own or another's spiritual
growth because it affirms that love is an action, 
that is is akin to work. . . .
~ bell hooks
___________________________

Quoted from "Living to Love" (1993), Reproduced in Women's Health, Chaper 5, page 236

bell hooks, Poet and Author, Feminist, Social Activist


See, in particular these books by bell hooks: All About Love: New Visions (Perennial/Wm. Morrow Paperbacks 865th Ed., 2018), Salvation: Black People and Love (Harper Perennial, Reprint, 2001), and Communion: The Female Search for Love (Wm. Morrow Paperbacks, 33,539th Ed., 2002).

 

Saturday, April 28, 2018

Saturday Short



American Animals Poster

Today, Saturday Short brings you the trailer for American Animals (The Orchard, 2018). The mostly-well-reviewed film is about four college friends who decide to steal a rare folio of artist John James Audubon's bird illustrations from the library of Transylvania University. The 120-minute movie, written and directed by Bart Layton, stars Evan Peters, Barry Keoghan, Jared Abrahamson, and Barry Jenner. It premiered in January at Sundance 2018 and releases to theatres June 1.

Sunday, April 22, 2018

Thought for the Day

Hands are good at almost everything
we ask them to do.
~ Bob Hicok
______________________________

Quoted from "The class visit" from Bob Hicok's Forthcoming Collection Hold (Copper Canyon Press, Fall 2018) (The poem about gun violence appeared April 9, 2018, as "Your Monday Poem from Copper Canyon Press" as part of National Poetry Month.)

Bob Hicok, Award-Winning Poet and Translator

Saturday, April 21, 2018

Saturday Short


Film Poster


Today, Saturday Short features the trailer for Lou Andreas-Salome, The Audacity to be Free (Cinema Libre Studio, April 20, 2918), appearing in the United States this week. Directed by Cordula Kablitz-Post, the film, which premiered in March in New York City, takes a look at the German polymath Lou Andreas-Salome, who was a novelist, psychoanalyst, and pioneering feminist, a disciple of Freud, and the muse and lover of Friedrich Nietzsche and Rainer Maria Rilke.



Read a review of the film in Hyperallergic and posts about Andreas-Salome at brainpickings and World Literature Today.

Lou Andreas-Salome on FaceBook and Twitter

Thursday, April 19, 2018

New Artist Watch Feature at Escape Into Life

The work of renowned photographer Adrien Broom, who lives and works in Connecticut, is the subject of my new Artist Watch column at the international online arts magazine Escape Into Life. Note: The images shown in this post are not shown in the feature at EIL; together with the latter, they are intended to show the wide arc of Adrien's marvelous ouevre.




The images above are from Adrien Broom's "Colorful Dream" project.
© Adrien Broom

PLEASE DO NOT COPY IMAGES







The above images are from Adrien Broom's "My Own Tales and Fables" project. 
© Adrien Broom

In addition to commercial photography, Adrien produces superb contemporary fine art and commissioned portrait photography. (See images below.) A highly imaginative, highly visual storyteller who can't help but betray her love of creative play, Adrien often can be found building elaborate and fantastical sets in which she places the characters that tell her stories. (See the images above.) Life-sized and in miniature, her "alternate universes", as she calls them, frequently include elements of painting and film and are as colorful and extraordinarily beautiful as they are dreamy and strange. Notably, they hold to no single interpretation.

Today's Artist Watch showcases a selection of representative images from Adrien's most recent and ongoing project "HOLDING SPACE: the Historic Houses of Artists and Writers". Adrien's settings include the Mark Twain home and Florence Griswold house, both in Connecticut, as well as Wentworth Woodhouse in England, United Kingdom. Also included are Adrien's Artist Statement and a biography, as well as Adrien's social media outlets. Be sure to explore the many hyperlinks featuring Adrien's creative take on the past, the present, and the otherworldly, the known and the unknown.



The above image is an example of Adrien Broom's commissioned portraits.
© Adrien Broom


The image above is a selection from Adrien Broom's commissioned portraits
 with set designs.
© Adrien Broom

Sunday, April 15, 2018

Thought for the Day

Illness is the doctor to whom we pay most heed; to kindness,
to knowledge, we make promise only; pain we obey.
~ Marcel Proust
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Quoted from Sodome et Gommorhe, or Cities of the Plain (1921-1922), Vol. IV, Pt. II, Ch. 1

Marcel Proust (1871- 1922), French Novelist, Essayist, Critic


Saturday, April 14, 2018

Saturday Short



Today's short previews 25 in 24 (2018), a 65-minute documentary about Jon Foreman, lead singer for the alternative rock band Switchfoot, who, following the release of the four-EP project The Wonderlands, decided in 2017 to perform 76 songs in 25 different shows in 24 hours in San Diego, California. He played in a Mexican restaurant and a children's hospital, at a wedding, and on a beach, among other locations.

The indie is from Brainstorm Media.


25 IN 24 from Brainstorm Media on Vimeo.

(My thanks to The Rabbit Room and Chris Yokel for the link. Read Chris's post "Jon Foreman's 25 in 24".)

Sunday, April 8, 2018

Thought for the Day

Haunted is an apartment where a woman lived.
~ Taylor Mali
________________________________

Quoted from "The New Ash on the Roof of Our Building' in The Whetting Stone (Rattle, 2017), page16 (This is a beautifully written and very moving chapbook. It comprises the poems Mali wrote after the death of his wife Rebecca.)

Taylor Mali, Brooklyn-Based Poet, Educator, Voiceover Artist

Sunday, April 1, 2018

Thought for the Day

Strange how shameful sorrow feels.
 ~ Richard Solly

_____________________________

Quoted from Richard Solly, "The Immensity" in From Where the Rivers Come: Poems (Holy Cow! Press, 2006, page 71

Richard Solly (1947-2015), Poet

Sunday, March 25, 2018

Thought for the Day


. . . At its best, faith is the overflow of gratitude,
the attempt to live as if we are loved, the fragile hope
for something better on the other side of pain and death. . . .
~ Michael Gerson
______________________________

Quoted from Michael Gerson, "The Last Temptation" in The Atlantic, April 2018 (This is an excellent piece.)

Michael Gerson, Nationally Syndicated Columnist, The Washington Post; Senior Adviser, ONE Campaign

Michael Gerson on Twitter

Saturday, March 24, 2018

Saturday Short

Today's short is the official trailer for the documentary Unfractured, which features environmental activist Sandra Steingraber, Ph.D., as she and other anti-fracking protestors take on the oil and gas industry in upstate New York. (A natural gas-extraction process, fracking contaminates the environment with toxic chemicals that harm humans' health.) Steingraber is a biologist, public speaker, poet and writer, and cancer survivor. She co-founded New Yorkers Against Fracking and Concerned Health Professionals of New York.

Produced and directed by Canadian Chanda Chevannes, the documentary, which premiered last year at the Planet in Focus Environmental Film Festival, currently is screening around the country. Upcoming screenings are scheduled in the United States at the University of Michigan at Ann Arbor, April 4; and Martin Koppel Theater, Chenango Arts, Norwich, New York, April 19. Another screening is scheduled at Fast-Forward 2018 Eco-Film Festival, Erin, ON, April 25. The film is being shown this afternoon at the Carnegie Institution for Science, Washington, D.C., as part of the Environmental Film Festival in the Nation's Capital.



Unfractured on FaceBook and Vimeo

Sandra Steingraber on FaceBook 

New Yorkers Against Fracking on FaceBook 

Americans Against Fracking

Sunday, March 18, 2018

Thought for the Day

Everyone has a      burning building      inside them.
~ Nick Lantz
____________________________

Quoted from Nick Lantz, "Ruin", in American Poetry Review, Vol. 47, No. 2, March/April 2018, page 34



Lantz is the author of We Don't Know We Don't Know (Graywolf Press, 2010), The Lightning That Strikes the Neighbors' House (University of Wisconsin Press, 2010), How to Dance as the Roof Caves In (Graywolf, 2014), and You, Beast (University of Wisconsin Press, 2017).

Thursday, March 15, 2018

New Artist Watch Feature at Escape Into Life


Pooja Campbell, Everybody's Got a Hungry Heart, 2017
Oil on Canvas, 48" x 36"
Copyright © Pooja Campbell

PLEASE DO NOT COPY IMAGE

I could not be more delighted than I am today to present in this month's Artist Watch for the online arts magazine Escape Into Life the work of the superbly talented painter Pooja Campbell.

A native of Bangalore, India, Pooja came to the United States in 1995 and, after earning a fine arts degree and studying textile design, settled in Maryland. In addition to attracting the attention of private collectors, Pooja's work, which is highly distinctive in style and easily identifiable for its bold, tropical-like colors, has been exhibited around the U.S. and in India.

Today's Artist Watch features eight images of Pooja's spectacular paintings, her biography, her Artist Statement, and her social media addresses. 

Pooja maintains a studio at Artist & Makers Studios, 11810 Parklawn Dr., Rockville, MD 20852. If you're in the area, be sure to stop by to introduce yourself and see Pooja's paintings.

Wednesday, March 14, 2018

A Trio of Don't-Misses

Take note of and don't miss the following:

★ A new documentary about Andy Goldsworthy, Leaning Into the Wind (Magnolia Pictures, 2016), directed, photographed, and edited by Thomas Riedelsheimer, is playing now in theatres. Shot between 2013 and 2016, the 93-minute English-language film, which includes Goldsworthy's daughter and assistant Holly, captures the artist at work in urban settings, dense forests, jungles, and fields of grain using such natural materials as mud, leaves, bark, rocks, clay, bracken, and even sheep to create site-specific works. Goldsworthy's locales include Scotland, France, and the United States. See the trailer at the title link above or as it appears on Vimeo, below. The documentary is an official selection of the San Francisco Film Festival, scheduled for April 4-17.


Reviews or Other Articles at Film Forum, Hyperallergic, Variety, and Screen Daily

Leaning Into the Wind on FaceBook

★ "Sally Mann: A Thousand Crossings", a major survey of the work of photographer Sally Mann, opened March 4 at the West Building of the National Gallery of Art, Washington, D.C., and continues through May 28. Featuring more than 100 images, the show is organized into five sections: "Family", "The Land", "Last Measure", "Abide with Me", and "What Remains".

Related programming at NGA includes a public symposium, "History, Photography, and Race in the South: From the Civil War to Now", April 14, 10:30 a.m., East Building Auditorium; and two lectures, also in the East Building: "Crossing Paths", April 21, 12:00 p.m., and "The Evidence of Things Seen and Unseen", May 20, 2:00 p.m. 

A traveling exhibition, "A Thousand Crossings" will appear at Peabody Essex Museum, Salem, Massachusetts (June 30 - September 23); The J. Paul Getty Museum, Los Angeles, California (November 20, 2018 - February 10, 2019); Museum of Fine Arts, Houston, Texas (March 3, 2018 - May 27, 2019); Jeu de Paume, Paris, France (June 17, 2019 - September 22, 2019); and High Museum of Art, Atlanta, Georgia (October 19, 2019 - January 20, 2020).

A 320-page exhibition catalogue (see image below) is available.

Cover Art, Sally Mann Exhibition Catalogue

★ What is it like to leave . . . your partner or your family, your career or job, the only place you've called home, or even your life? In Last Works: Lessons in Leaving (Yale University Press, January 9, 2018), Columbia University professor of religion Mark C. Taylor looks at writers' and thinkers' final reflections to discover how people confront and experience leavings and endings and to better understand the lessons others offer about life and living. Taylor's subjects include, among others, philosopher Soren Kierkegaard, medical doctor and father of psychoanalysis Sigmund Freud, and novelist, essayist, publisher, and critic Virginia Woolf.


Cover Art