Unfortunately, big-time art retrospectives are rare here in Stumptown, kind of like giant metal shows (waiting for you, Iron Maiden!) and big Broadway productions (Hamilton won’t be here until the 2017-18 season and will probably sell out in two seconds).
The new Andy Warhol print retrospective now at Portland Art Museum (PAM) however, is the REAL DEAL. “Andy Warhol: Prints from the Collections of Jordan D. Schnitzer and His Family Foundation,” showcases 250 Warhol prints and ephemera and is the largest collection of its kind ever to be presented.
Check it out before Jan. 1, 2017 & if you’re a Warhol fan pick up a copy of the gorgeous hardbound catalog with a brilliant essay by Richard H. Axsom, senior curator at the Madison Museum of Contemporary Art.
See my writeup on the exhibition for Oregon’s 1859 Magazine here:
*Images courtesy Portland Art Museum
I love solo travel but that doesn’t always mean that I am necessarily alone. The more interested I become in photography, the more I enjoy taking small photo tours/workshops to explore my wish list destinations. The benefits are threefold: 1. I discover a new place. 2. I improve my photographic skills by learning from professionals […]
Check out an informative new podcast with Bob Patterson, editor of Street Photography Magazine and internationally renowned street photographer Valerie Jardin on applying street skills beyond the street.
I attended Valerie’s two-day street photography workshop in Paris last January and it was an experience that launched an amazing year of fresh inspiration and new opportunity. Highly recommend!
Because we know how to tell a story in a frame, they often hire street photographers to do those shoots.
–Valerie Jardin on utilizing street skills for commercial projects
Yellow leaf trembling
Caught in gossamer silk threads
Waiting for release
Siena, Italy is about to explode in an eruption of art and activity surrounding the 2016 Siena International Photography Awards and Art Photo Travel Festival Oct. 28-Nov. 30, 2016.
I’m looking forward to reporting on this second annual event that brilliantly brings art, culture, education, architecture, food & more together in an amazing Tuscan city for an entire month.
Check it out & stay tuned for more!
I recently had the distinct honor of getting to know the work of internationally acclaimed Indian poet Vinita Agrawal. She graciously agreed to an international-style interview, in English here and translated into French by Paris-based arts & culture blogger Pravesh Bhurtha, founder of Bollywood Sources, whose mission it is to promote Indian cinema, arts & culture in France.
See the French-language version HERE: http://bollywoodfilm.over-blog.com/2016/09/interview-vinita-agrawal-poete.html
Thank you to Ms. Agrawal and Mr. Bhurtha for this opportunity to share inspiring literary art around the world.
For internationally renowned award-winning poet Vinita Agrawal, the creative spirit came to her at a very young age.
She wrote her first poem at the age of five.
“It was about my doll,” she said via email from her home in Mumbai. “Looking back, I feel that I expressed my love for the things I possessed or the people in my life through poetry.”
Agrawal’s poetry is rich with emotion and vivid detail, the words and the stories they carry carefully woven like a beautiful tapestry, every thread working in tandem with the next. And when her work is read out loud, it has a singing rhythm and lovely tonal quality like the sound of rain falling onto copper bells.
In her most recent and third poetry collection, The Silk of Hunger, (AuthorsPress, Delhi, India, 2016) Agrawal explores “the spirituality lying dormant within us.”
Reviewer Russell Micnhimer praises the collection in North of Oxford.
“And beneath all the visceral awareness of the physical detail we sense the relentless cycle of time going on,” he writes. “This is something even a lot of mature poets are incapable of doing and it points to the acuity with which this one meets her world and shares her perceptions of it with the reader.”
The Silk of Hunger is available for purchase here: http://www.authorspressbooks.com/author_detail.php?a_id=747
Additional work is available at Amazon.com HERE.
Agrawal graciously took the time recently to answer a few questions about herself and her work.
That’s right…I wrote my first poem at the age of five. It was about my doll. Looking back, I feel that I expressed my love for the things I possessed or the people in my life through poetry. I wasn’t exposed to poetry of any kind as such in my primary years except for what was taught in schools. I remember distinctly that poetry lessons were my favorite class. I used to feel a surge of emotions just reading poems. I bought Palgrave’s collection of classical poetry as a teen and read it cover to cover. That was my earliest inspiration. Later my own emotions became my inspiration for writing. Even now, some feeling has to stir inside me for me to express it in words. I cannot write mechanically.
Although it’s true that I’ve lived in many cities, my work has never ever been influenced by the external place of stay. The inner space that all of us carry within us has stayed the same. And all my words arise from there. Mumbai is a ‘happening place’ – meaning that it is culturally alive. There are myriad opportunities to share one’s work and seek exposure for one’s creative side. But personally, I just stay connected to myself within. That’s the person who does all the talking in my work. The outer city doesn’t really matter.
I was a closet poet – meaning that I wrote a lot of poetry but did not come out with it in public. I just hoarded my work in personal diaries and folders. However things changed after 1997 after my first publication in a magazine called Femina. It was a leading women’s monthly in India at the time and their poetry page was edited by Kamala Das. She was one of my favorite poets so it meant a great deal to me to be published there. After that there was no looking back – after that I wanted to be published everywhere!
There’s a famous Urdu poet Nida Fazli who said, that all your experiences are poetry…and that which is not experienced by you is prose. Similarly, the truth of the emotions that I depict in my poems is what makes it rich…else it would be sawdust.
At Kailash Mansarovar in Tibet. If I could survive that long there, that is! It’s the most mystical place on this planet. It’s at an altitude of above fifteen thousand feet and oxygen is scarce. But I believe that just visiting the place is a transformational experience. It would be blissful to write there!
Poetry allows me to be myself. Otherwise we mostly play roles in life. A good wife, an excellent mother, a helpful friend and caring daughter are roles that one must fulfill so that life remains in balance. But it is poetry that sustains my inner balance. It keeps my core intact.
The Solid Lines Of Disappearing Things
by Vinita Agrawal
Published in Mithila Review, May 2016
The air, the tree house
that once knew love is now weak in the knees
and in the time it took those moments to become page weary
to turn from solid lines of tree trunks to smoke
A world fell.
Somewhere in the twilight age
the shaved heads of jasmines ride the desire
to bloom on wet branches of August
but they have lost touch with themselves
We cannot become ourselves again.
You and Varanasi
where human heads sink when alive and float when dead,
where seemingly harsh, bladder-bright yellow crystals gleam,
are disappearing thoughts
A male world is full of dirty jokes.
Hospitals do not care
children continue to laugh off mestizos
and we do not know EVER if we want to laugh or cry
but Swifts come every day
Watching the middle-aged man finely tune his deck of life.
Listen to Vinita Agrawal read her poetry via the following links:
More about Vinita Agrawal:
Author of three books of poetry, Vinita is a Mumbai based, award-winning poet and writer. Recipient of the Gayatri GaMarsh Memorial Award for Literary Excellence her poems have appeared in Asiancha, Constellations, The Fox Chase Review, Pea River Journal, Open Road Review, Stockholm Literary Review, Poetry Pacific, Mithila Review and over a 100 other national and international journals. She was nominated for the Best of the Net Awards in 2011. She was awarded first prize in the Wordweavers Contest 2014, commendation prize in the All India Poetry Competition 2014 and won the 2014 Hour of Writes Contest thrice. Her poems have found a place in significant national anthologies like Suvarnarekha and Dance with the Peacocks in several international anthologies compiled in Australia and Israel. She was co-judge for the Asian Cha Poetry Contest, 2015. She has read at SAARC events, at the U.S. Consulate, at Delhi Poetree and at Cappucino Readings, Mumbai.