Stella Donnelly

Stella Donnelly’s “Boys Will Be Boys” is a stunning anthem relatable to anyone who has experienced sexual assault.  The song was written in response to a friend of hers being assaulted years prior to #metoo.  The song’s re-release this year on her new album “Beware of Dogs” hardly seems coincidental.  Donnelly tackles rape culture head on with uncompromising force, proclaiming her rightful upset through reclaiming a chorus we’ve all heard many times before: “Why was she all alone/ wearing her shirt that low?/ They said ‘Boys will be boys’/ Deaf to the word ‘no’.”

Stella Donnelly comes to Deluxx Fluxx in Detroit on March 25.  Tickets here.

Wild Nights with Emily

This truly does look like a wild ride, super queer, and fresh perspective on Emily Dickinson based on her letters.  Led by Molly Shannon and directed by Madeleine Olnek.  Limited release on April 12, 2019.

Brief synopsis:

“In the mid-19th century, Emily Dickinson is writing prolifically, baking gingerbread, and enjoying a passionate, lifelong affair with her friend and sister-in-law Susan…yes this is the iconic American poet, popularly thought to have been a reclusive spinster. Beloved comic Molly Shannon leads in this humorous yet bold reappraisal of Dickinson, informed by her private letters. While seeking publication of some of the 1,775 poems written during her lifetime, Emily (Shannon) finds herself facing a troupe of male literary gatekeepers too confused by her genius to take her work seriously. Instead her work attracts the attention of an ambitious woman editor, who also sees Emily as a convenient cover for her own role in buttoned-up Amherst’s most bizarre love triangle. A timely critique of how women’s history is rewritten, WILD NIGHTS WITH EMILY remains vibrant, irreverent and tender–a perhaps closer depiction of Emily Dickinson’s real life than anything seen before.”

Captain Marvel, Elsa, and Visibility

The world has been more than ready for female superhero movies and Captain Marvel is proof. With its crushing box office opening weekend, (read about it in New York Times) Here’s to the start of many more amazing women, gender non-conforming, and people from all backgrounds to have their superhero moment.

Visibility is and always has been important because when people see affirmations of their own identity in the media or elsewhere, it can help give validation to that identity. This could be why, at the hint of any queer content, people start petitions to make the content more explicitly so. A great example of this is the #GiveElsaAGirlfriend campaign that amplified at the release of the official Trailer for Frozen 2. Many view her song “Let It Go” as a coming out anthem proving Elsa is not afraid to be who she is. This would be a truly iconic moment if Disney were brave enough to make their first ever lesbian princess. (If this doesn’t happen, I am in process of making my own…updates on that to come.)

Many people have also been reading queer overtones into Captain Marvel (Carol Danvers) and her relationship with Maria Rambeau. Danvers helped Rambeau raise her daughter and it is clear that they treat one other as chosen family. See: Autostraddle “Captain Marvel is more kickass and queer than my wildest dreams”

The best part of Captain Marvel? The fact that Carol Danvers has nothing to prove to any man.

Richard Wentworth

“The point about art is it’s all in its interpretation. Art is something that you encounter and you know it’s in a different kind of space from the rest of your life, but is directly connected to it. … It’s a great privilege to be near art because when you’re near art, you can be another kind of person, and it allows you to think differently about things that you have never done.” — Richard Wentworth

Mary Oliver

Wild Geese

You do not have to be good.
You do not have to walk on your knees
for a hundred miles through the desert repenting.
You only have to let the soft animal of your body
love what it loves.
Tell me about despair, yours, and I will tell you mine.
Meanwhile the world goes on.
Meanwhile the sun and the clear pebbles of the rain
are moving across the landscapes,
over the prairies and the deep trees,
the mountains and the rivers.
Meanwhile the wild geese, high in the clean blue air,
are heading home again.
Whoever you are, no matter how lonely,
the world offers itself to your imagination,
calls to you like the wild geese, harsh and exciting –
over and over announcing your place
in the family of things.

-Mary Oliver

 

Book in Progress!

INTRODUCING THE CONTEMPLATIVE MAPPING INSTRUCTION ADVENTURE BOOK!

The book contains a series of self-guided walks inviting you to mindfully experience spaces, connection, and community.  The guides are comprised of choose-your-own-adventure style instructions and maps where individual interpretation dictates the experience.   The piece provides individual and group experiences that uncover the depths of everyday surroundings and lead to discovery.

I have been developing this project through my research at Towson University and will be inviting people to participate in individual walks, separated into booklets, in April and May.  Check back soon for dates and times of the gatherings.  The book will be available late April.  In the meantime, enjoy a sneak peak at few pages!
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Carey Young “Declared Void”

I have been working with squares, specifically taped squares, since this summer and recently happened upon Declared Void (2005) by Carey Young, showing once again the extraordinary possibility in the form.  Here, Young creates spatial divisions to arrive at the complexities of positioning in public space.   The instructions transform the sectioned off space from anyplace, anywhere gallery to political zone (almost using the idea of the “white cube” against the gallery itself).  It also provides a decision point of interaction for the viewer.