Writing the Walls 2020
November 20-January 30
An virtual event featuring poetry inspired by How We Live: Sculpture and Video from the Marc and Livia Straus Family Collection
“May you live in interesting times…”
– Mistakenly attributed to 19th century Chinese curse
Writing the Walls joins the imaginative process of the written word with the creative power of the visual arts. Launched by Artistic Director Mara Mills, Studio Theater in Exile, and Livia Straus, co-Founder and President of Hudson Valley MOCA, the project is now in its 15th year. As originally conceived, the poems, selected by a jury of peers, were performed in front of the inspiring artworks. There were no seats, simply an audience moving along with the poets, viewing one work and then another. Over the years the audience grew from a small gathering of 35, to multiple performances of up to 100 participants, the power of the poets’ words enhancing the visual experience. What amazed was that the insights of the poets meshed with those of the artists, each art form enriching the other.
The project became a model for other institutions to emulate.
Now, with the pandemic, Writing the Walls, the voices of the poets and the beauty of the works included in the prophetically named exhibition, How We Live, is about to go on-line. We look to the positive energy of an expanded audience, to the opportunity to hear the poets in their own voices and to see the works that inspired them.
As in our live performances where poems were posted near the works of art, inviting a more studied review, on-line guests have the opportunity to look through the catalogue and enjoy the offerings again and again.
Image: Poet Karen Marmer reading, Ocean Morisset photo