Writing the Walls: “Between I & Thou” Poets Walk

Join us for this year’s Poets Walk, during which the writers selected for Writing the Walls 2017 will perform their pieces in front of the artworks that inspired their written word!

The Hudson Valley Center for Contemporary Art (HVCCA) and director, Mara Mills, are thrilled to present Writing the Walls: Between I and Thou. This year we are dedicating the program to Tom Lux (see below for bio).

This is the 11th year of Writing the Walls. Over the years, poets and playwrights have enhanced the exhibitions at HVCCA with their literary creations. This year, the exhibition, Between I and Thou, combines a sense of the mystical, the domestic, the meditative, and the playful. The art work in the exhibition will be a wonderful creative catalyst for inventive minds.

HVCCA invited writers to respond to works Between I and Thou, asking that writers not only take the images for inspiration, but consider thinking about the relationship between you the writer (the I) and the work (the Thou). 

100 poems, writings that interfaced with the art works, were submitted and chosen anonymously by committee. This led to the acceptance of 30 plus poems which have, since August 2017, been displayed on the walls of the HVCCA near the works that inspired the individual poet. The thematic thread of the exhibition Between I & Thou is rooted in the teachings of Martin Buber and addresses the way artists choose to present their sense of the relationships and interconnections between humans, nature and the mega-universe that surrounds us. Juxtaposing the art works with the words of the poets gives, by example, permission to viewers to create their own relationship with the art. Thus a connection is forged between the community and art-making.

A reception will follow the Poets’ Walk with time to celebrate the poems and talk to the poets.

The program kicked off on April 23rd, as Donna Barkman performed her new play VIEWFINDER, based on Emma Rivers’ Bathrobe Chronicles. This was the transitional event between last year’s Writing the Walls and the beginning of the submission process for 2017. Writers were invited to experience the artwork of Between I & Thou and submit written work by June 30th, 2017.

This project is supported in part by a grant from the Alliance of Resident Theatres.


Thomas Lux (December 10, 1946 – February 5, 2017)

This year saw the passing of a giant in the world of contemporary American Poetry, Thomas Lux.  It is to him we dedicate this year’s ‘Writing the Walls’.

Tom generously launched our poetry series at the HVCCA in 2005 when he honored us with an evening of readings as part of a poetry moveable feast.  A busload of his dedicated students from Sarah Lawrence, where he was then a Professor, as well as other acolytes attended the reading in a packed room of some 150 devotees.  He was an amazing teacher, mentor and writer who brought the beauty and joy of the language of poetry to many.

Thomas Lux was born in Northampton, Massachusetts, son of a milkman and a Sears & Roebuck switchboard operator, neither of whom graduated from high school. Lux was raised in Massachusetts on a dairy farm.

Lux graduated from Emerson College in Boston, where he was also poet in residence from 1970–1975. His first book—Memory’s Handgrenade—was published shortly after.

Lux was a member of the writing faculty at Sarah Lawrence College, where he taught for twenty-seven years, from 1975 until 2001.[2] He was also a core faculty member of the Warren Wilson M.F.A. Program for Writers. In 1996 he was a visiting professor at University of California, Irvine.[2] A former Guggenheim Fellow and three times a recipient of grants from the National Endowment for the Arts, Lux received, in 1995, the $50,000 Kingsley Tufts Poetry Award for his sixth collection, Split Horizons.[4] In 2003, Lux was awarded an honorary doctorate of Letters from Emerson College.[2] His poems were featured in many notable anthologies, including American Alphabets: 25 Contemporary Poets (2006) .

At the time of his death in February 2017, Lux was the Margaret T. and Henry C. Bourne, Jr. Chair in Poetry at the Georgia Institute of Technology where he began teaching in 2001.[3] At Georgia Tech he ran their “Poetry at Tech” program,[1] which included one of the best known poetry reading series in the country, along with community outreach classes and workshops.

Before his death, Lux edited (and wrote the Introduction to) Bill Knott‘s posthumous publication I Am Flying into Myself: Selected Poems 1960–2014 which appeared in February 2017.

Tom published over fourteen books of poetry and, as a dynamic reader, gave hundreds of readings.  He  is survived by his wife Jennifer Holley Lux and a daughter from a previous marriage, Claudia Lux.

(Adapted from Thomas Lux, Wikepedia)

Event Location and Ticket Information

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Hudson Valley Center for Contemporary Art
1701 Main Street
Peekskill, NY
Handicap Accessible? Yes

Date: Sunday, February 18, 2018
Times: 3:00 pm - 5:00 pm

Ticket pricing:

$10 - Adults
$5 - Students/Seniors/Peekskill Residents
Free - Members

Presenter: HVCCA
Presenter Phone: 9147880100
Presenter Website: www.hvcca.org