Tag Archives: artists

Ouroboros Review, Issue Three

I’m delighted to have an interview with John Siddique and two poems included in the third issue of poetry and art journal, ouroboros review. If you are interested, do take a look at the magazine here.
Contributors include John Siddique, Denise Duhamel, John Walsh, Susan Richardson, Karen Head, Matthew Hittinger, Dustin Brookshire, Louisa Adjoa Parker, Lorna Shaughnessy, Cheryl Snell, Carolee Sherwood and Joyce Ellen Davis, among others.

Blue Rooms, Black Holes, White Lights

Blue Room
Belinda Subraman

Wildlife flickers above the fan.
A hummingbird approaches.
A plane lands on the wall.
A lace wedding cake flutters in the breeze.
Buddha appears with light and stone.
Ashes surround the pagoda.
A book and father lie waiting.
The fame of love is framed
above a door’s encryption.
A camel prances with a prince and a woman.
Flowers are mistaken.
A change of season brings armies and storms.
A tall thin bookcase holds
a Moroccan rug down.
An Italian bed holds up the dog and pillows.
The TV is blind without birds.
Tiny life takes over.
A thousand calls of night paint the moon.
Thin caskets of words and sound
slide into frames.
Neon sculptures dip down from the ceiling.
A hum of blades disturb the throat.
Hands tilt upwards.
Nothing can be said that is news.
A corner is filled with mosaic nakedness.
Santa sits near a fairy and a beer
above a steeple in a bookshelf of dreams.
A folding angel hovers over flowers
and a sweet but angry man.
Kleenex unfolds and catches.
The pink column of myth and wood
supports air and possibilities.
A tree lamp grows under mirrors.
A woman meditates, floating.
Her breast wears hats from many lands.
Her crotch is laid with red tile.
Moths thump the beaded sameness
of a hat-framed lamp.
A purple dragon across the room
shines with amethyst eyes.
Bugs and the dog fade as soon
as light turns inward.
A change of season brings armies and storms.
A thousand calls of night paint the mood.
Nothing can be said that is news.
from Blue Rooms, Black Holes, White Lights
by Belinda Subraman (Unlikely Books, 2009)
Visual art by César Ivan.

Hazel Frankel’s ‘Revelations’

Hazel Frankel
In the beginning we created
bone, blood, skin, breath,
as we surged, rose, touched, kissed,
and it was morning
and it was evening,
our first days,
and together we saw that it was good.
In the beginning were our words,
and they were yes, now, tomorrow, joy,
and it was green and golden,
it was wind and fire,
it was man and woman,
and together we thought we would last forever,
for we knew that it was good.
In the beginning
we were sand and ocean and heaven on earth.
Our light carved out the darkness
with the stars’ brightness
and the moon shone forever
as we were born over and over,
and the sun in your eyes told me it was good.
But as our love filled the darkness of our deep,
the waters of the firmament filled with our tears.
In the beginning we feared no end.
In the beginning
was our end.
from Drawing from Memory (Cinnamon Press, 2007)

Copies of Drawing from Memory may be purchased through the Cinnamon Press website, Amazon (UK) or directly from Hazel (franks@iafrica.com).
Drawing from Memory’s cover artwork is Hazel Frankel’s Red Painting.

Sex, Drugs and Modern Art

“Everybody wants to get on the van Gogh boat.  There’s no trip so horrible that someone won’t take it.  The idea of the unrecognised genius slaving away in a garret is a deliciously foolish one.  We must credit the life of Vincent van Gogh for really sending this myth into orbit.  I mean how many pictures did he sell?  One?  He couldn’t give them away.  We are so ashamed of his life that the rest of art history will be retribution for van Gogh’s neglect.
In this town, one is at the mercy of the recognition factor.  One’s public appearance is absolute.   Part of the artist’s job is to get the work where I will see it.  I consider myself a metaphor of the public.  I am a public eye, a witness, a critic.  When you first see a new picture, you don’t want to miss the boat.  You have to be very careful because you may be staring at van Gogh’s ear.”
– art critic and poet, Rene Ricard, in Basquiat (1996)
  (written and directed by Julian Schnabel. 
  Based on a story by Lech J Majewski.)

The Zen of Seeing

“Everyone thinks he knows what a lettuce looks like.  But start to draw one and you realise the anomaly of having lived with lettuces all your life but never having seen one, never having seen the semi-translucent leaves curling in their own lettuce way, never having noticed what makes a lettuce a lettuce rather than a curly kale.”

– Frederick Franck, The Zen of Seeing:  Seeing/Drawing as Meditation

Patti Smith

“You have to kick doors open yourself.  When people come up to me and say, ‘Patti, nobody wants to hear my CD and I don’t have enough money for equipment,’ I say, ‘Well, get a job, y’know?’  That’s what I did.  You get people who say, ‘The government won’t give me a grant and I can’t do my art.’  I say, ‘Fuck you, it’s your own fault, you expect the government to give you a hand?  The government is corrupt.  Do what it takes.  You do babysitting jobs, you work in the factory, you work in the bookstore or become a pickpocket, y’know?  But whatever. Get a job. ‘ Work is really good for an artist.”

– Patti Smith

Marc Chagall

“Despite all the troubles of our world, in my heart I have never given up on the love in which I was brought up or on man’s hope in love.  In life, just as on the artist’s palette, there is but one single colour that gives meaning to life and art – the colour of love.”

– Marc Chagall