Posts Tagged ‘Arts Council of Kern’

Reflections Image and Word: She Killed the Moon


2010
11.28

Art Every Day Month – Day 28.  That means after today, we have two days left! How did this happen? What seemed so difficult to keep up with is almost over, gone in a blur.

I am putting in another pairing from the Reflections – Image and Word exhibit at the Arts Council of Kern.  I took the photo to go with LisaAnn LoBasso’s poem.  I blurred it a bit on photoshop and deepened the color, but it was a spectacular moon night when I took this.  If you click on the link you can see the photo in its original state.

She killed the moon by  LisaAnn LoBasso

Today she is two percent.

Waning crescent. I cannot find her anywhere.

Two percent exists in the dark sky.

She seems invisible.

I wonder if she is searching for herself, like I am now.

Is she dead?

My husband says I killed her when I took his keys, his wallet—his heart.

Shoes, his only asset.

In this blacktop day.

I want to fly into the sky like Imrryr, like a bird

Shooting, like a star, shooting like

My father, on the ranch.

I want to profess. I didn’t kill her! I didn’t, I didn’t kill the moon.

But then I realize as the day hides beneath her shroud,

And the cowboys come home.

I did kill her. Yes, now, tonight

At the early break of light, I am trying to find that sliver.

Of us both.

Yellow, waning, two percent.

A crescent ready to unfold and open.

Full.

Reflections: image+ word – Arts Council of Kern’s new exhibit opens tomorrow


2010
11.18

Tomorrow Reflections: image + word opens at the Younger Gallery, sponsored by the Arts Council of Kern.  I have seven photos and two poems in the show and I can’t wait to see it hung!  I love the concept.  So for today’s Art Every Day Month post, I’m giving a little preview of the show with a photo of mine and poem by Nick Belardes.

Journey of the Brown Beetle  by Nick Belardes

Flip it over!

No! That’s mean.

Ay! Cabron!

Let’s just watch it crawl, dimwit.

To the highway?

Even across the highway.

To the barrio?

No way! Not the Barrio. Johnny One Eye will eat it.

Where then? To the desert?

Of course to the desert.

Past the dog bones?

Through the rattlesnake graveyard.

That’s a scary place. Indian spirits.

And up Miner’s Hill.

Into the valley?

And all those shrubs in Jesus Valley.

Where the old saints live?

Where they suck the cactus.

And that old hermit who drinks Coors like grandma?

And wears the same makeup.

Wow! He’s strange.

Most of the Saints are.

It will never make it.

It will die when it gets there.

Then can we flip it over?

No. Let it dry up where it stops.

But the shell will break.

No it won’t. It will last forever.

A brown shell in the desert?

Forever.

Forever?

Forever…

Reflections – image + word


2010
11.15

Sailing into the second half of Art Every Day Month, I’m going to post about an exhibit sponsored by the Arts Council of Kern ( on this link you can find the show poster and view it) that opens Friday here in Bakersfield.  It’s called Reflections image + word and features three photographers and three poets.  I’m one of the photographers and I also have a couple of poems in the show, but I wouldn’t dare to call myself a poet.

Here’s how it works.  The six of us assembled, talked, and then submitted poems and photographs to each other.  If someone felt pulled to a particular poem, that person would submit a photo.  If a poet felt pulled to a particular photo, that person would submit a poem.  The curator, Nicole St. John, chose the final entries and the show opens Friday.  It’s a wonderful concept and I think it’ll be a terrific show.  I won’t give the whole thing away, but I’ll post a couple of the poems and photos.

The first photo is by LisaAnn Lobasso.  She called it Another Farm Gives Way, but I put my own interpretation on it with the poem I wrote.

Usable

Usable by Susan Reep

Old, rusted, antique, as useless as typewriters.

Cast off but not discarded.  Yet.

Is that what happens to old things? To old people?

Her skin was trim, her body thin, but it wasn’t new.

Does old come when your body starts to sag?

If so, she was ok.  For now.  In image.

Being naked and feeling naked are different.

Being naked filled her with exhilaration, excitement, freedom.

She stood straight and proud.

Feeling naked exposed her from the inside out.

It all rose to the surface. Insecurities and doubts.

Her stride would break; she’d want to wrap her arms

Around her body to keep everything in, private.

Would it feel different to be walking in a new tractor store?

It may have been a bad idea to come out here seeking

The freedom of open spaces, the confidence of solitude,

The comfort of the farm.

It might have been better in spring when everything was new.

Well, not everything.  She’d still be in the midst of old,

Rusted, antique cast-offs.  Worse, they weren’t even important enough

To cart off.  Just cast off. Obsolete. A warning.

What good was her trim, thin body that would someday sag.

Better that form follows function.  It’s the use, isn’t it?

Being usable, not used up. Contemporary, not contemplated.

The new was sleek, smart, fast and firm,

But it didn’t tell stories.  The stories were in

The rust, the uselessness, the age.  The antiques.

What stories they could tell if they could speak.

Seeking freedom on the farm, the solace of solitude.  Not so bad

After all.  Because she could speak. She could speak for now.

She could even speak for others. She could speak for the future.

She could speak for the past. She could speak for her body.

She could speak with her body. Her new body, her slim, trim body,

And the saggy baggy body yet to come.

The one that would be full of stories.

Used up, maybe. But usable.

Little Girl with a Baseball

I submitted a photo that  Nick Belardes liked it so he wrote a poem.  The photo is one I took years ago and kept in the back of my mind, knowing someday I wanted to use it for something.  I think I’ve posted this before, but it never hurts to do it again.  Anything about baseball deserves a second posting, especially with such a poignant poem.

LITTLE GIRL WITH A BASEBALL by Nick Belardes

She will taunt you

When you’re ten years old,

And she’s three.

She’ll hold your baseball

Like it’s a mystery orb

And won’t give it to you

When you want it back.

When she’s fifteen,

And you’re Twenty-two,

She’ll only watch you

If you’re winning.

“It’s just a game,” you say.

You know that isn’t true.

And she never believes you anyway.

When she’s twenty-three

And you pitch your first game in the majors,

She’ll finally say you were meant to be

a ballplayer.

But she still won’t write you letters.

Or tell you you’re the best she ever saw.

When you start coaching AAA,

She’ll remember all those games

You once played.

You will call her up,

And she’ll say what you looked like

From the stands.

When she’s fifty,

She will hang photos

you didn’t know she had.

Like the time she had that magic orb

When she was three.

After the show opens, I’ll share some more.  If you’re in the Bakersfield area, the details are on the poster in the link.  I think you’ll recognize the photo on the poster.

Poetry and Photography, a preview: Little Girl with a Baseball


2010
09.27

The Arts Council of Kern will be mounting a show toward the end of October.  The working title is Poetry and Photography, and it’s a really cool concept.  Three poets and three photographers were asked to collaborate, matching poems to photos or vice versa.  I’m honored to be asked to participate.  The other two photographers are amazing, and the poets are knock-your-socks-off fabulous.  I have been needing an infusion of new ideas and ways of thinking so this came at just the right time.  I’ll have two poems in the show as well as photos, and I wanted to share one collaboration that is close to my heart.

My granddaughter Annabelle is six now, but  I took a photo of her at her second (or was it her third?) birthday party that I’ve always wanted to do something with.  I loved the way she was looking at the little boy, and he was looking back at her,  as if it were a stand-off of sorts.  Or a dare.  Abbo had his baseball.

I love baseball.  I love the poetry and the ballet of baseball.  I love watching the diamond just as the batter steps up, the pitcher winds up, lets go of the ball, the batter swings, and the infield and outfield move as if choreographed, one way or the other, like a corps de ballet.  It’s just so beautiful to see it all happen.  Besides Star Trek, baseball is one of the things I love best.

I put the photo out there, and one of the poets, an honest-to-goodness published author (look him up on Amazon and buy his books), Nick Belardes, snapped it up.  The poem is so romantic and wistful, so full of hope and heartbreak, and so full of promise that it captured me immediately.

I don’t want to ruin the show so this is just a teaser, one little teeny part.  It’s nice to put it out before baseball season is over.  The boys of October are but days away, the Padres are six games away from the wild card, and since the Dodgers are bums this year, I’d like to see the Padres win something, finally.  Giants fans, sorry, can’t do anything for you.  You’re still the enemy to those of us who bleed Dodger blue.

LITTLE GIRL WITH A BASEBALL  by Nick Belardes

She will taunt you

When you’re ten years old,

And she’s three.

She’ll hold your baseball

Like it’s a mystery orb

And won’t give it to you

When you want it back.

When she’s fifteen,

And you’re twenty-two,

She’ll only watch you

If you’re winning.

“It’s just a game,” you say.

You know that isn’t true.

And she never believes you anyway.

When she’s twenty-three

And you pitch your first game in the majors,

She’ll finally say you were meant to be

a ballplayer.

But she still won’t write you letters.

Or tell you you’re the best she ever saw.

When you start coaching AAA,

She’ll remember all those games

You once played.

You will call her up,

And she’ll say what you looked like

From the stands.

When she’s fifty,

She will hang photos

you didn’t know she had.

Like the time she had that magic orb

When she was three.

Walk for the Arts


2010
05.21

I’ve been meaning to do this post since last Saturday.  I keep telling folks about Bakersfield and what a great little city we are and how our arts scene is exploding.  Last Saturday we had something called Walk for the Arts The Arts Council of Kern was behind the event, but many organizations formed teams to participate.    You walked a leisurely 5K, getting your passports stamped at 22 locations.  All galleries and museums were open with free admission, and there was music everywhere. At first, I said I couldn’t participate – I can’t remember why but I think I was supposed to be out of town.  As it turned out, I didn’t go out of town but I couldn’t have walked much anyhow after dropping that ladder on my toe. (The swelling is almost gone and it doesn’t look so scary anymore.) This is Jeanette Richardson, executive director of the Arts Council and she has really taken the organization to new heights as well as a position of respect in the State.  That would be the state of California. I took my granddaughter, one of the six of them anyhow, and went down to see a few things.  There’s a coffee house downtown called Caffeine Supreme, and I can’t argue with the premise for that name.  Thank goodness coffee is now good for you!  Anyhow Gina, the owner, has organized a farmer’s market/craft fair every Saturday – one more feather for us! This is Gina.  Ali and I enjoyed walking around the craft fair but took to the car after that.  Here’s a few photos of what we saw. This is a general idea.  It was a gorgeous terrific day. It was great to see the teens participating.  BECA has a table every Saturday – remember BECA? Bakersfield Emerging Contemporary Artists. We drove over to the Health Expo where my daughter had a booth. My daughter is a neurofeedback technician.  If you know anyone with migraines, or chronic pain read this.  I’ll link to her web page so you can read about neurofeedback. Because many severe migraine sufferers are no longer having headaches, servicemen and women with PTSD (the link is to a local couple’s PTSD Diary and it can help others to understand just what they are coping with.  They talk about neurofeedback) are starting to relax, kids with ADHD are calming down.  It’s not a cure all but it works.  It saved my daughter’s life by enabling her to deal with chronic back pain resulting from botched surgery. No matter where you are in the country, Kim’s website can help you locate the neurofeedback provider closest to you. Next – lunch.  I took my granddaughter to Brimstone at the newly remodeled Padre Hotel and saw the biggest limo ever!  Inside we saw a bridal party taking photos. So that’s it.  Short day.  Time to return home for toe rest.  And other rest too.  I’m getting into one of those strange states of mind – I’m distracted, I’m Elsewhere. Ok, I’m not actually at the Elsewhere studio in Paonia, CO, but I’m going up to the cabin soon for some alone creative time.  I feel ideas about to spill over.  So I’m printing photos I think I’ll want to use and I’m raring to go Elsewhere.