If you missed my interview with Valerie Stephens and Helen Elaine Lee, you can listen to it here:
Monthly Archives: September 2012
Guests today on The Bridge are Valerie Stephens and Helen Elaine Lee who travel into some of today’s most troubling issues and transform what they find into art.
First we’re going to hear from Valerie Stephens, who will talk with us about her one woman show, The Mammy Diaries, where she explores the reality, the myth, the caricature of the complex and multidimensional stereotype of Mammy, whose presence is still threaded through our society today. Valerie will perform The Mammy Diaries on October 4 at the Multicultural Arts Center in Cambridge. Go to www.multiculturalartscenter.org and click on events for more information. To learn more about Valerie and her work as a vocalist/bandleader, story teller, educator, and performance artist, visit her website at www.valeriestephens.com
Through her early career as a lawyer and currently as a novelist and educator, social justice has been a central part of her life from her childhood on. “Justice” she says, “is a fiction for some of us.”
She has written two novels from the points of view of those inside. She will discuss and read from Life Without on our 9/28 show on The Bridge, and we will hear about the second of these novels, The Hard Loss, in a later show. Check back on this blog for dates & details.
Helen says she had to “earn the stories” she tells, so she has spent many years as a volunteer in medium security prisons, teaching storytelling and creative writing. Listening to the voices and the stories of those inside, she was often struck by the “survival of dignity, generosity, and self interrogation” of her incarcerated students.
She is currently Associate Professor of Fiction Writing in MIT’s Program in Writing and Humanistic Studies, and she is a member of the Board of Directors of PEN New England and directs its Prison Creative Writing Program
You can read three of the stories from Life Without online at:
“Alphabet,” in Prairie Schooner, http://prairieschooner.unl.edu/?q=alphabet
“Pomegranate,” in Solstice Literary Magazine, http://solsticelitmag.org/pomegranate/
“Back in the Day,” in Callaloo: http://muse.jhu.edu/journals/callaloo/summary/v031/31.2.lee.html
Upload Audio | Listen to Audio | Interview: Mammy Diaries | YourListen.
Dear Friends of The Bridge: Arts for the 99 % — I’m having technical difficulties uploading the 9/29 show featuring two fierce and courageous artists Valerie Stephens and Helen Elaine Lee. Because Valerie Stephens will perform her one woman show The Mammy Diaries on October 4 (Thursday) I want to make sure you have a chance to hear her discuss this compelling and challenging theater piece. So I’ve uploaded that section of the interview here.
In The Mammy Diaries, Valerie explores the reality, the myth, the caricature of the complex and multidimensional stereotype of Mammy, whose presence is still threaded through our society today. Valerie will perform The Mammy Diaries on October 4 at the Multicultural Arts Center in Cambridge. Go to www.multiculturalartscenter.org and click on events for more information. To learn more about Valerie and her work as a vocalist/bandleader, story teller, educator, and performance artist, visit her website at www.valeriestephens.com
And check back soon for the full program on THE BRIDGE as soon as I get the technical stuff figured out! AND I hope to see you at THE MAMMY DIARIES on October 4!
Award winning artist Raul Gonzalez was nominated Boston’s best visual artist of 2010 by the Boston Phoenix. Raul is a self-taught artist with a fascination for American folk art and comic book art. As a youth, he painstakingly dissected the work and techniques of his favorite comic book artists, down to how they sharpened their pencils, in order to teach himself to produce art. Early influences include Jim Lee, Jack Kirby, and Todd McFarlane who drew Incredible Hulk for Marvel, (1987-1988) and is known for changing Spider-Man’s webbing from essentially X’s between two lines into “spaghetti webbing”.
His work has been exhibited far and wide from coast to coast, not least at Tufts University in Medford, The Mills Gallery at the Boston Center for the Arts, and the San Francisco Art Institute.
Gonzalez, a family man, who lives in Somerville MA., is committed to introducing youth to the visual arts. Raul has taught in the education departments of the Institute of Contemporary Art, Boston and the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston. In 2011 Gonzalez collaborated with over 125 kids from all over the city of Boston to create a work entitled “and their Families” for the Linde Family Wing of the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston.
Raul has recently been commissioned by Tufts University to create a 4 by 20 foot mural as part of their Temporary Public Arts program.