visible language

August 29, 2021

Forced Entertainment is a group of six theatre and performance artists based in Sheffield, England. The group’s artistic director, Tim Etchells, is a visual artist and writer known for his performances, installations, and neon artworks. The latter are large-scale, often temporary pieces that explore “contradictory aspects of language — the speed, clarity and vividness with which it communicates narrative, image and ideas, and at the same time its amazing propensity to create a rich field of uncertainty and ambiguity.” Browse some of Tim Etchells’s projects.

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image by Colin Davison

Night of Ideas

January 27, 2021

Thursday, January 28, 2021, is Night of Ideas, a 24-hour virtual marathon of philosophical debate and artistic performances produced in 75 countries around the world, coordinated by the Institut Français, Paris, and co-produced by the Cultural Services of the French Embassy in the United States.

The entire 24-hour program, which begins at midnight tonight Pacific time and is free, will stream live globally and the U.S. segment will begin at 6:30pm Eastern / 3:00pm Pacific as Patti Smith Imagines the Night with a poetic and musical performance.

See more on Cultural Services of the French Embassy in the United States and Night of Ideas.

see art

May 27, 2020

Seattle was one of the first cities in the United States to adopt a percent-for-art ordinance, in 1973. Since that time, the city has amassed a collection that includes more than 400 permanently sited and integrated works and nearly 3,000 portable works. Now the entire collection is available for viewing at the Seattle Office of Arts & Culture Civic Art Collection. Let the ekphrastic poetry begin!

If you’re looking for something a little different to do with your hours at home, consider the Getty challenge: select a piece of artwork you love from the online collection of the Getty or another museum, such as LACMA, The Met, Cleveland, the Art Institute of Chicago, the Walters, or the National Gallery. Then use three (or more) objects you have around the house to recreate the artwork. Then photograph and share your masterpiece.

See more samples and Tips for the Quarantine Challenge.

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image: Male Harp Player of the Early Spedos Type, 2700–2300 B.C., Cycladic. Marble, 14 ⅛ x 11 1/16 in. The J. Paul Getty Museum, 85.AA.103. Recreation via Facebook DM by Irena Ochódzka with canister vacuum

thanks to Sally Lappen again!

still ekphrastic

January 11, 2020

Poetry projects come and go, so it’s nice to see one that stays. We posted about Visual Verse back in 2017 (see that post here) and as of January 1, 2020, the project is still very much alive. The images posted each month are varied in style and subject, and the resulting online journal is robust and attractive. The guidelines are here. Try it out.

on poetry

December 22, 2019

“Some days I can’t get an idea, and I think, ‘Man, I’m just washed up,’ but it’s just a mood.”
Jean-Michel Basquiat
(December 22, 1960 – August 12, 1988)

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photo

If you’re a down-to-the-line holiday shopper and you’re anywhere near Portland, Publication Fair 2019 is for you! On Sunday, December 22, 2019, from Noon to 7:00pm, you’ll have a chance to browse the work of local small presses and artists — and you’ll still have time left for gift-wrapping. More here.

If you’re shopping or giving at this time of year (well, at any time of year), put your gifts where they can make a difference.

play day

September 2, 2019

Got time on your hands? What? It’s a holiday? Watch out, because here comes Make Your Own Brainard.

Joe Brainard was a writer and artist.

Partly because he was initially short on money for art supplies, he made collages and assemblages, forms that prize detritus, found (sometimes shared) treasures, snippets of paper, and, in the bringing together of unlike things that are deeply liked, the act of choice. ‘I like to start from nothing and just surprise myself’ (Joe, 57), he said, gathering material from the city streets, friends’ apartments, and the junk shop where he worked and was paid in stock, before making an ‘attempt to let my head be free and see where it would take me’.

Brainard’s friend, poet John Ashbery, called the artist’s work “nutty poetry.”

After Brainard’s death, “snippets” of collage material were found and later digitized and integrated into an online, interactive collage-making site, Make Your Own Brainard. You can select from the artist’s images, add your own, and create collages to save.

It’s really fun. Try it. Play.

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MYOB collage by J.I. Kleinberg

strong voices

January 2, 2019

You’re invited to look and listen as a group of poets offer their words to accompany the Women Empowering Women exhibit at Allied Arts in Bellingham on Sunday, January 6, 2019, at 4:00pm. Featured poets include Nancy Canyon, Lois Holub, Jessica Lee, Maria McLeod, Rainbow Medicine-Walker, Dayna Patterson, Carla Shafer, Kami Westhoff, and Leslie Wharton.

The opening reception for the exhibit will be held during Gallery Walk, Friday, January 4, 6:00-8:00pm. The participating artists (Francie Allen, Mary Jane Davis, Patti Fairbanks, LaVera Langeman, Erin Libby, and Leslie Wharton) will also host a film and fundraiser for the Cascadia International Women’s Film Festival on Thursday, January 17, 6:00-8:00pm, and a Tea Party in honor of the Women’s March on Saturday, January 19, at 2:00pm. The exhibit will remain on view through Saturday, January 26, 2019.

opening

October 1, 2018

A new exhibit, Quenton Baker: Ballast, opens this Friday, October 5, 2018, at the Frye Art Museum in Seattle and continues through February 3, 2019. Baker’s exhibition “will be an outgrowth of an in-process collection of poems that examines the 1841 slave revolt aboard the brig Creole….It is the only successful large-scale revolt involving U.S.-born enslaved people in American history.

“Baker’s book project is a combination of erasure poems — made using pages from the Senate document detailing the Creole case — and poems in invented form that look at what some black writers and thinkers call ‘the long memory’ or the ‘long utterance’ of blackness.”

Baker will read from the work at 7:00pm on October 5, followed by a reception. On Thursday, November 1, 2018, the Frye will host a reading and conversation with three poets selected by Baker: Amanda Johnston, Dante Micheaux, L. Lamar Wilson.

More about Quenton Baker.

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