Josh Dorman created a new art work inspired by his wife Ana C.H. Silva's poem "You Told Me I Was A Closed Book" for the current exhibition Art & Words: An Exhibition of Art & Poetry Inspiring One Another. 22 artists and 21 poets create new art and poetry inspired by one another’s work and are exhibited side by side. Ana's poem was chosen as inspiration by two artists (Josh and Elaine Ralston) who created new works. Ana also created a new piece of art inspired by a poem by Josepha Gutelius. Josh and Ana discuss their participation:
Ink, acrylic, antique paper collage, resin on panel
9" x 12"
inspired by the poem:
YOU TOLD ME I WAS A CLOSED BOOK
Let me go then, put me in the sea.
I’ll turn its exact color, the grey of that moment.
Greenish brown as the sun first comes up
when plant parts and tiny animals
color the water and salt.
I will find the shape and beat of the waves,
the water so cold I won’t dissolve.
Sun through black lettering
on both sides of pale sheets.
A soft layer of water sits
between each page buttressing —
no rips against the toss of the waves.
On a certain day the string of my binding will be yanked out
by a fish, pulled clean and eaten.
My pages will go the radius of a circle
each by themselves learn when to
duck below a rough one
slide right or left as needed
or float still under full sun.
You might find a wet sheet someday
dripping on the warm dryness of your hand
but put me back.
— © Ana CH Silva
Artist Elaine Ralston also created a new work inspired by Ana's poem
Pastel on paper
16" x 12.75"
Ana also created the new work "Then Came the Stray Thought" inspired by the poem "The Chamber Music (Why I Am Not Matisse)" by Josepha Gutelius
Then Came the Stray Thought
mixed media: acrylic paint, synthetic scarf, found crocheted doily, children’s markers, lipstick, acrylic gel, washi and packing tape, mat board
10" x 10"
inspired by the poem
THE CHAMBER MUSIC (WHY I AM NOT MATISSE)
I started a painting
of two girls and their mother.
The girls sit at a piano,
their faces turned
away. Why, I don’t know.
Are they looking
for some forgotten light or bored
by my endless
Should they wear pink?
Are they any less innocent
if I smear them in gray wash?
One girl picks at a rhythm on the keys.
A lazy plop,
plop, like milk dripping on doilies.
know, but I hear it,
and I swear the girls
A gleam of black and steely something
slips down one girl’s sleeve.
How on earth did that get in?
Quick, erase the arm, the steely whatsit —
Too late. I’ve brought in a note
of savagery. I’m watching, I can’t intervene.
Everything’s on a grim course
There and there and there
the girls pounce on the knife in a rush
and mother falls —
A charcoal saint in bloodied crinoline.
How did it happen?
I wanted two girls, a mother,
a music chamber, a sweetly tender scene.
Then came the stray thought —
— © Josepha Gutelius
Artist Debra Friedkin also created a new work inspired by Josepha's poem
O Mother! My Mother!
mixed media collage
12" x 15.5"
JOSH DORMAN was born in Baltimore, MD and lives and works in New York, NY and West Shokan, NY. He received his MFA from Queens College, Flushing, NY and his BA from Skidmore College, Saratoga Springs, NY. Josh has been the recipient of numerous residencies and fellowships including Yaddo, Art Omi, and the Millay Colony. He has been a visiting artist and lecturer at numerous institutions including most recently Skidmore College, Saratoga Springs, NY and Mass Art Graduate MFA Program, Boston, MA. His work is held in numerous collections across the country and he has exhibited nationally and internationally. His work has been reviewed in publications such as Art in America, ArtForum, The New Yorker, Art News and The LA Times.
DEBRA FRIEDKIN: My narrative mixed media sculptures and collages incorporate found objects and depict provocative themes. I address environmental and societal toxicity through 3D "cautionary tales" about contemporary issues. The incorporation of discarded, manufactured litter "litter"-ally illustrates these tales. I work in various media, including collage, painting, and sculpture. The characters and settings are iconic and range from prehistoric to futuristic - strange and fabulous creatures and animals, fossilized dinosaurs, mythical unicorns, aliens and humans or just body parts. Most of my sculptures feature my handmade clay and plaster figures built upon bits of metal or rock, along with salvaged materials that may be left as is or manipulated through carving and painting. They are then integrated into conceptual diorama settings with trompe l'oeil or surrealistic backgrounds which become powerful assemblages imbued with spirituality and raw emotion.
ELAINE RALSTON was introduced to artistic expression early in life as a child with weekly art classes in various mediums. Later she attended an Arts & Music High School followed by the Fashion Institute of Technology. She studied pastels at Mt. Saint Mary College and also at the Art Student League.
She is a member of the Arts Society of Kingston (ASK), Woodstock School of Art, Woodstock Artists Association and Museum (WAAM), and Lower Hudson Valley Plein Air Painters. Her work has been exhibited in numerous shows and was awarded 1st place in 2006's “Artists on Campus Wildlife Award” for a pastel portrait of the oldest of her cats. In 2009 and 2015 she won the Gayle Clark Fedigan award for best pastel, in 2010 and 2012,1st place for the all mediums Hudson Valley category and best pastel in 2013. To expand her views she has even traveled to Ireland and Italy to study and paint.
JOSEPHA GUTELIUS: An award-winning poet and playwright, Josepha Gutelius made a radical switch to visual art in 2015. Born 1952, raised in Greenwich Village and Waccabuc, NY. A graduate of the Masters School, where she studied under painter Robert Arner, who became a lifelong friend and mentor. Attended Bard College as an art major and switched to Comparative Literature, eventually concentrating on German literature at Ludwig Maximillian University in Munich. Her first collection of poems, To the Perfect Love which Prepares a Table Beyond Us, was published by Rat and Mole Press in 1975. In 1971, she met her future husband in Cadaques, Spain, in the home of Salvador Dali. Moved to West Berlin in 1975, where she worked as arts correspondent for the Christian Science Monitor and published her second collection of poems, Rapt Meat, with original collages by the author. Returning to NYC in the late 70s, she became production editor for the Norton Anthologies of literature and simultaneously began playwriting. Plays staged in NYC and regional theaters include Schlag’s Atomica World Machine, Vaseline, Veronica Cory, The Age of Anxiety, Miracle Mile. In 1980, she and her husband made a permanent move to Saugerties where she began publishing short stories -- several as fictionalized accounts of artists, notably Penny, which was included in the anthology Best New Writing 2013. Many of her paintings reflect the narrative equivalent of a setting, a mood, an atmosphere — with characters who have a story to tell.
ANA C.H. SILVA has had solo exhibits at The Russell Gallery at Deerfield Academy in Deerfield, MA and at The Spence School Gallery in Manhattan. Her work has been include in the Peace and Human Safety Media Festival Exhibition and the Yaddo Artist Colony benefit auction. Ana has created two community-based collaborative installation projects in the Catskills, merging poetry and visual arts: Olive Couplets mounted at the Olive Library in West Shokan, and Lines in the Woods at the New Century Historical House in Rosendale, NY,—part of the show Eotechnic Sensorium, curated by Jeff Benjamin. She has been the visual arts curator for the online version of the Mom Egg Review from 2016 - the present.