The Landscape and Abstraction: Paintings by Ricker Winsor

Another View of the Pond

I grew up in NYC when abstract painting was at its height, and just at the time when Pop Art was taking over the gallery walls. I was a close friend of Herman Cherry for twenty-five years until his death and I knew Bill DeKooning and many others still alive at that time, Richards Ruben, Reuben Kadish, and others. I was surrounded by abstraction but insisted on my plein air … [Read more...]

Remembering poet David Gitin

Gloria Avner and David Gitin

It is with a numbed sense of great personal loss that I report the passing on June 27th of David Gitin: poet, educator, and polymath. As Gloria Avner lovingly phrased it (his long-lost teenage sweetheart, re-discovered and reunited in Key Largo six years ago), “he has finally graduated from Earth school.”It is never easy to get to know the complex and extremely gifted. … [Read more...]

Collages by Bill Wolak

Patient Clouds - BIll Wolak

Artist’s Statement: Collage undresses the darkness with a mirror’s secret undertow. It’s a dance done on burning kites while dreaming at the speed of light. Expectant as nakedness, collage is a door that surfaces in the shipwreck of your sleep. It’s a caress with the irresistible softness of a slipknot in a velvet blindfold. At its best, like poetry, collage is a moan just … [Read more...]

Four poems

poems by Sam Silva - image by Denise Enck

COMPUTER CLASSICAL RADIOAlluvial!...floatation of notes in a river of sound where fingers somewhere dance on a keyboardNature! Nature! in a watery sight ..in the brain ...in the heart ...such fluids abound as would take me there also on this dark quiet night like computer screens and their dancing light!SHIVERS WITHIN A HOT SEASONun bathed a month and swimming in June … [Read more...]

Portrait Collages by Nanette Jordan

Nanette Jordan collage art

Nanette Jordan is a multi-media "Renaissance Woman" from a family of San Francisco artists. The Smithsonian's Renwick Museum, as well as many other fine galleries, have featured Nanette's work. She is most known for her unique handcrafted sterling jewelry, her repurposed "Refunct" jewelry collections, torn collage portraits, and her non-fiction essays. … [Read more...]

On Painting On

on painting on

“Why are the paintings going away?”Mommy explains: ”Your dad is having a very important one-man show at a big fancy gallery across from The San Francisco Opera House. We're going to get all dressed up and attend the opening.”I get to go and not wear my pajamas with feet.The grown-ups that belong to my friends will be there, the City Lights poets, the artists we … [Read more...]

Erin Messer on Latif Harris’ Barter Within the Bark of Trees

Latif Harris - Barter Within the Bark of Trees - Poetry

In 1981, the poet Latif Harris was working at — and living above — Browser Books in its former location a block up from the current store on Fillmore Street. Harris was behind the front counter when, he says, “the most beautiful woman in the world” walked into the store.They did what you do in a bookstore: talked about books, with Harris recommending something he was … [Read more...]

In a Corner of the Room: Oil Pastels by Ricker Winsor

Phi Beta Fu (detail) - Ricker Winsor

I started working in the corner of my classroom at the American International School of Port of Spain, Trinidad during the two years I taught there in 2011 and 2012. It seemed to me that the students learned more from the fact of my working than from anything I could tell them. When I was working they were focused on their own projects and quiet. This is not normally the case … [Read more...]

For Independence Day: Jimi plays the Star-Spangled Banner!

Backyard American Flag / photo credit http://www.flickr.com/photos/rog2bark/367622243 / CC BY

Here's Jimi Henxrix playing "The Star-Spangled Banner" at Woodstock, 1969. And if that's not enough for you, check him performing it on the 4th of July in Atlanta!Jimi Hendrix - Star-Spangled Banner, Woodstock Festival, August 17, 1969Jimi Hendrix - Star-Spangled Banner, Atlanta, July 4, 1970Have a happy and safe 4th of July, everyone! - Denise … [Read more...]

El Condor Pasa

Cowboy

All my life I’ve been surrounded by paintings of cowboys. Longer still, I’ve been surrounded by people who wanted to be cowboys. Sometimes I count the paintings, the cowboys. There’s my grandparents’ acrylic that hung above their couch of a man, close to death slouched on his horse, reaching towards the mirage of water in the horizon. There’s the man with broad hat and bolo tie … [Read more...]

The Rift in Time: Paintings by Rodica Miller

The Rift in Tiime (detail) - Rodica Miller

Introductory note: “The Rift In Time” series of works is a journey that starts from our inner world and continues onward to the stars. With delicate care, I try to render the ghostly energy waves reaching our senses, and the nostalgia of perishable things such as pomegranates, water lilies, and even the potent perfume of love letters, all perishable just like the stars … [Read more...]

Five Poems from the Forest in Hidalgo

lichen - Denise Enck

DRUNK DREAMIt has been 5 years since I quit the drugs that were skinning my heart They, I, still make me dream about them That I was stone tongued and the Cause of laughter and awoke Shadowed in shame, blood open and cryingThat I had left my guitar behind In a cafeteria light lit bar In the city I am from, across from the old fire stationThis is my mind Its … [Read more...]

Book Review – Street Angel by Magie Dominic and Adult Onset by Ann-Marie MacDonald

Magie Dominic - Street Angel / Ann-Marie MacDonald - Adult Onset

With chapters named for the days of the week in Street Angel and with specific dates in a given week in Adult Onset, these two novels seem to make ideal reading companions.Ultimately, much of literary fiction is preoccupied with time. Whether it is Molly Bloom’s day in James Joyce’s classic Ulysses or the week of contemporary romance in Rainbow Rowell’s novel Landline, the … [Read more...]

Poems by Sam Silva

Whatcom Falls Park, March 23 2015

A STRANGER'S EDUCATION IN THE ARTSA brain with its echoes finds constancy in classical romantic serenade and a mirror in the later centuries' leap into expressionism dancing close to jazz.My pen burned its dull flame in visions of the cinema ...cartoons and characters were the backdrop for my crusty verbal images of nature and the cityand with such an … [Read more...]

Expatriation, Art, and Spirit

Tetuan Dreaming (detail) - Ricker Winsor

Standing on the edge of the highway I held a sign that said “London”. It was cold, early spring, and I was hitching from Newcastle. I was nineteen, and the year, nineteen sixty-four. At a pub that evening a Canadian guy told me, “You know, once it starts it never stops.” He was right and I knew it even then.Expatriation is an inevitability for certain people. People with … [Read more...]

Bread and Circus

Photo credit: https://www.flickr.com/photos/industrial_arts/8368401293

South of the imaginary lines where the uniformed and ironed men and and women that look like boys and girls, skin on the face still soft, wear their gloves and glasses bad men are winning the imaginary wars they’ve begun so they could win themJhosivani put his feet to the ground he slept on at morning dark toes and light palms the merry go round Earth 4 kilometers down the … [Read more...]

Yankees in Fairyland: A Review of Take Me Out, by Richard Greenberg

Take Me Out - Richard Greenberg

Richard Greenberg’s play Take Me Out is as much about the role of the athlete, particularly the baseball “star,” as it is about what makes a team function—and what threatens the unity of a team. The play confronts the disturbing truth that baseball has never been an equal opportunity employer. African-Americans were shut out from the big leagues for decades. Gay Americans … [Read more...]

From Motown to Mowtown

photo credit: Digital Third Eye

An obsession with polished aspirational black music finally carried me to Detroit. I had come to rediscover the heartbreak of first love and unearth a few last Okeh "cover ups". Poking my nose against a high window in the MGM Grand Hotel I survey this strung out city constructed on the lands of the People of the Three Fires. Michigan Central looms in front of me, the morose … [Read more...]

Four Poems

Poems by A.K. LaMotte

PULVERIZEDI pulverized your jaw with a knuckle sandwich but you fought back blossoming your hyacinth.Then I shattered a quart of Colt 45 on the ivory lingam of your skull but you exfoliated flecksof lapis lazula therefor I tied off your red ribbon and swung you around my head a plastic garbagebag of last night's pork chop bones then granulated your skeleton … [Read more...]

Collages by Kareem Rizk

Cowboy Kid - Kareem Rizk

Artist's statement A mesh of vintage consumerism, post-war sophistication and mid-century ephemera, Rizk’s work explores nostalgia and surveys the essential and singular visual niche of collage in this age of mash-ups and remixes. By reinterpreting and rearranging visual history with weathered imagery, highly textured surfaces, design-inspired compositions and occasional droll … [Read more...]

En Plein Air: Landscape Painting

Portage Store, Vashon (detail) - Ricker Winsor

Artist's statement: This is a condensed survey of the plein air landscape I have done over many years in locations from Vashon Island, Washington, Vermont, Spain, and Bangladesh.They are oil paintings about 22 x 28 inches more or less. RW … [Read more...]

The Unforgiveable Sin of Joss Whedon

The Unforgiveable Sin of Joss Whedon

Avengers: Age of Ultron is upon us, and that means the odds have gone up considerably of me having to confront The Whedon Problem with my more sophisticated, artsy friends. First you have to understand that my friends and I spend way too much time analyzing the latest “golden age of television” gems—Breaking Bad, The Fall, True Detectives, The Americans. We marvel at how The … [Read more...]

That Deadly Lord Douglas: Oscar Wilde and De Profundis

Oscar Wilde - De Profundis

It is hard to read the letter published as De Profundis, with its account of Wilde’s disastrous life with Lord Alfred ‘Bosie’ Douglas, without laughing.From his cell in Reading Gaol, Wilde recounts the tally of the couple’s lavish, carefree days of freedom. Everything was so expensive: the meals, the gifts, the gambling debts incurred by Bosie and covered by Wilde, (there … [Read more...]

Burning Factories: Art by Sander Steins

Burning Factory 1 - Sander Steins

It was the summer of 1980 when I was seven years old that I sat in the back seat of my father’s blue Opel Kadett coupé and saw the first smoking chimneys of the German Ruhrgebiet. Those were the declining years of one of Europe’s biggest and heaviest industrial areas and I will never forget the impression it left imprinted on my retina. As a child I rebuilt entire cities … [Read more...]

4 Spring Poems

Scudder Pond in Early Spring - Denise Enck

ACHE AWAKENINGIn a moment where the yard explodes in air about infested with sky blue expanse in twigs straining to bud near left over winter mud and cars rip by in dense exhaust ...mirrored exhalation of our chants.April's murder on the way ...there is a cost for such sudden exuberance of days which grow quite warm.I am an elf on this Spring day! I am a … [Read more...]