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Ellen Jantzen ellenjantzen.com tribe Â issue Â 22 3 Rodrigo Illarraga
the start of a beautiful journey....
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CAST Akin Cetin [cover & inside cover] Lucy Lepchani Cate Inglis Tomoe Ishida [back cover] Rose Packer Alan Summers Adrianos Sotiris Simon Raab Suzy Goodfellow Anthony Dortch Sheena She Richard Martin Delan Cookson Luca Loiudice Bethany W Pope Carl Kavadlo Lance Wyoming Polly Morwood
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collaborators & conspirators Mark Doyle Hope Grimson Glyn Davies Sarah Ahmad Rebecca Sharpe Helen Moore Emily Pickthall Marianne Jarvis Richard Thomas Christine Platt email [firstname]@tribemagazine.org www.tribemagazine.org
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Artists have given permission for their work to be displayed in tribe magazine. No part of this publication may be reproduced without the permission of the copyright holder(s) If you would like to contribute art or articles to tribe magazine, then please send us an outline of your article to our main contact email. If you would like to submit your artwork, then please send us up to 8 samples of your work to the submit email. We have a rolling submissions policy and accept work at all times and throughout the year. Further details can be found on the contact section of our main website, or by emailing us at: firstname.lastname@example.org To submit work directly: email@example.com tribe is committed to working with creative organisations and individuals, to help promote awareness of their work, to promote best practice and collaborative working. If you would like to work with tribe then please contact us, we would love to make a connection.
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Rachael Gallacher rachaelcgallacher.com
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Cate Inglis cateinglis.co.uk
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Lucy Lepchani “I write because I need to, to stay sane and alive.” Interview by Richard Thomas
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Lucy Lepchani is an award-‐winning poet, writer, educator and performer living in Ashburton, UK. After years of honing her craft, raising a family single-‐ handedly, and dealing with the various pitfalls of our society, Lucy has produced a sterling effort for a first collection of poems in the shape of Ladygardens, published by the exciting and boundary-‐breaking, Burning Eye Books. Ladygardens is a welcome vote of confidence and power for the free-‐ thinking individual, and a delight to absorb in its literary poignancy. Richard Thomas caught up with Lucy to find out more about her debut collection and the ‘behind-‐the-‐scenes’ of her work.
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Could you tell our readers a little about
My greatest obstacles have not just been
yourself -‐ who and what inﬂuences your
‘the pram in the hall’ but poverty, as I
writing, and what’s the writing process like for you?
became a very young single parent after a marriage broke up. Poverty undermines
I write because I need to, to stay sane and alive. As a child, school was stiﬂing and my
ambition and strangles opportunities, and remember, back then, there was no tax
parents were puritanical and controlling, and writing was one way to breathe my own air, to own my own space. Even now, if I didn’t write, I would be exceptionally dysfunctional or disorientated in my life. I write about whatever happens to be attracting my attention away from the ordinary world or that looks particularly
bleak. Surviving in the world as a single parent whilst trying to make life both stable and necessarily experience-‐rich for myself as well as my children, took precedence. Writing was something that had to ﬁt in around everything else, including disappointing relationships, patriarchal
illuminated within it.
society, and my own self-‐doubt.
Since I made the conscious decision to ‘be a
But I got to the age of 39 and thought ‘If I
writer’, that is, to not just hide it away, but to practice the craft and develop my skills and to get my work ‘out there’ in meaningful ways -‐ I have been inﬂuenced by many teachers, poets, creatives from other disciplines, and by learning and understanding various creative writing methods. I usually start with a draft which I’ll work on through many transformations, taking months or years to completion. Sometimes a phrase or whole poem will arrive by itself, take shape, and get out at an open mic within a couple of weeks. I understand that you took a break from poetry to raise your children, how did you ﬁnd getting back into it -‐ did it take eﬀort or was it something that happened naturally? Was it easy to ﬁnd your poetic feet again?
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relief on childcare so my future looked very
don’t do it now, I might never know, and all those bastards would have won’. So I decided to give myself a year and write, and see what happened. In that year I had an amazing sense of having ‘arrived’ in my own life at last; and received an ‘honourable mention’ in a short story competition; so I gave myself another year. Then I won ﬁrst prize in a popular poetry competition and came second in a national literary competition, with a short story that was published by Bloomsbury. And so on. Apples and Snakes, who are the leading organisation for performance poetry in England, have also been hugely supportive, booking me at venues and providing training and mentoring as well as job opportunities. And now your debut collection of poems ‘Ladygardens’ is out for the world to see -‐
how did writing and putting together the
and expected to be in society – tell me
book come about?
more about this, have you always
My poems seem to have their own voices that nag at me to write them, arising from a
focussed your work on such strong Socialist directions?
compulsion to make something visible that has been overshadowed, or covered up; or
Unless I’m writing about landscapes or other visually lovely things – yes, I suppose I
to convey a diﬀerent truth to that which is
have. I can’t help it. I think I was born a
presented by the mainstream. Perhaps this is an echo of my childhood need for air, my
Socialist. Redistribution of wealth; giving according to ones means and taking
adulthood struggle for space and representation. And sometimes I am just
according to ones need; treating all people as equal and bowing down to none; these
led along by the loveliness of language as it
tenets in whatever form or guise, make me
appears out of my own pen, or as it lands breathtakingly on my screen. I love letting
feel connected to people and society, rather than alienated from it.
go and witnessing my unconscious mind take over the ﬂow of words. Sometimes I
The poems about women have been especially ‘lived in’, either through my own
hear ﬂying rhythms that I have to pin down with exacting words, and am vacant in conversations until I do so, because I can’t hear much outside of my head. Or words and rhythms arrive together, like voices out of nowhere. If I don’t write them down quickly, they might ﬂy past and never return. And some poems are self-‐mocking, or foolish, which should be an essential exercise for all poets lest we disappear up our own artistic bottoms. Putting ‘Ladygardens’ together came from choosing the best of those poems I have written in the last three or four years, though some are older. My editor/ publisher, Clive Birnie, was also an excellent collaborator with the ﬁnal product.
life or those close to me, or women I have worked with in the past within a domestic violence survivor support project. Issues and events associated with women’s struggle for equality – even notions of what that equality might look like to diﬀerent women – are too often under-‐represented and misrepresented in mainstream, in online media, and in social media, and in conversation. I make a point of addressing some of that when I can. The collection is named after a poem within it: Ladygardens, a list of metaphors which create the visual image of female sexual organs, implicitly rather than explicitly; and identify female sexuality in the context of
In reading ‘Ladygardens’, there seems to
beautiful natural phenomena, rather than objectiﬁed as wank stimulus; and as high
be two strands. One strand has a large focus on our political and social climate,
status within the same Abrahamic myths that usually deride female sexual nature.
the other on how women are perceived
The word Ladygardens is ridiculous,
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The Importance of Being a ‘Dole Scrounger’ Ernie’s got an attitude – he’s long term unemployed, they’re going to cut the beneﬁts they say he has enjoyed for too long -‐ and has ‘scrounged’ from those who pay their taxes, so Ernie’s income’s going to fall to governmental axes. But Ernie’s got an attitude, and no qualiﬁcations -‐ school was dull and disengaging and he didn’t have the patience to dot the ‘I’s and cross the ‘t’ s and sit all day and listen while football pitch was wide and green, and ﬁsh in rivers glisten, and nuts and berries grew on trees, and roads led far away, to fantasies of azure seas far brighter than our British grey. So Ernie learned his attitude -‐ and that’s a disadvantage, his intellect is razor sharp, his wits pit with advantage, and he sees through suspect spectacle, and hegemonic farce, saw all through school, divide and rule constructing class in every class, he sees the masters and the slaves, perceives the state machine that mashes minds to sausage meat and souls to might-‐have-‐been -‐ so Ernie values attitude -‐ he does not want to ﬁt into a cog just like a cog – will not be part of it. But nuts and berries, ﬁsh and seas, cannot sustain or be obtained, he has to ﬁnd a way to play the system at its game, for Ernie’s education taught him how not to belong, and blind to its own blind spot never learns where it went wrong. So Ernie says his health is poor, his back is dodgy, racked with pain, he’s got depression and represses tendencies to go insane. He cannot sleep, eats poorly, has schizoid-‐disordered quirks, ironically – this all is true – if they send Ernie out to work; and they’re going to legislate a way to take away his choice, but Ernie’s got his attitude, and insight, a he’s got a voice. So now you’ll hear him on the lines when ﬂying pickets join the shout, you’ll hear him at the demo when they’re trying to keep the Tories out you’ll see him, just one in the crowds when many march for peace, you’ll ﬁnd him starting new campaigns – his wonders never cease, he is an artist, and a poet, a philosopher, he writes a blog he’s a busker and a hustler, trying to ﬁnd the clear point in the fog, you’ll see him on the forums putting down the racist, sexist trolls -‐ it’s time this nation valued all the work done by some on the dole: for every culture needs its speakers, shamans and creators, the avant-‐garde and visionaries, movers and our shakers, our pickets and resisters and our raging rebel-‐rousers, we need our ragged rebels and their philanthropic trousers! In a world more stick than carrot, and a gap between the rich and poor that’s gaping like precipice and gripping with its ugly claw: we need our Situationists, our resisters and our braves: this is a fact of life as long as masters need their slaves. So stand up for those with attitude, respect those wise and crazy schemes. We’ve seen enough of nightmares, please, do not step on our dreams.
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Against the Coastguard Cuts When they drag the lifeless bodies from the water, record statistics, choose to print on front or inside page, it will be somebody’s mother, wife, or daughter, or a father, husband, son of youthful age. They have not drowned yet. Not tumbled overboard by backwash of a wave, have not surfed in hidden slipstreams near to shore. Have not yet breathed that element becoming briny grave, nor beached where sudden tidal gullies pour. They might be ourselves; they live and breathe amongst us, they might be our neighbours, colleagues or our kin, while the costs of Coastguards are measured in value against the debts of bankers, fools and kings. These are the facts. The slashing of a budget for some saving of something more important, it’s implied; as future tragedies just leave them waving, unsaved, too late, and so betrayed, will die. This is the truth. For seas are unpredictable and ruthless and undercurrents complicate the risks, and government statistics cruel and truthless when their dry facts are compounded by the mists, and with look-‐out station windows shuttered, boarded, several helicopters grounded, cutting costs. And how much cash can be saved and recorded? And is the price worth all who will be lost? No it is not. Not one of us in folly or misfortune, whilst in employment or in leisure and by fate deserves to ﬂounder while the coins of impunes are recovered in some ledger of the State. Our forebears lived and died so that the Coastguard could save all, without favour, without preference or blame. The arrogance of those who cut the Coastguard! A curse is theirs. They choose it with this murder, with this shame.
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amusing, saucy, poetically/horticulturally
The Importance of Being a Dole Scrounger
visual, and ironic all at the same time. The
speaks up for the many I have met over the
poem reclaims the word in other contexts.
years, including myself at times, who have felt utterly defeated by what Karl Marx
There is also a championing of the ‘average’ person, praise for creativity and continually ﬁghting against what’s fundamentally wrong in our world. I got a real sense of liberation, enlightenment and inspiration to be true to myself when I read these poems. Was this a feeling you were trying to rouse in people when putting this book together? Politics is about power, and if we, the average people, don’t understand or attempt to engage with politics in our lives, then we defer that task to others who may be less informed, less committed or competent, and less honest than we are. Poetry is sometimes my best attempt at that, the only thing I can do to exercise my political power on a matter; sometimes it is just a load of words, and some other action or lifestyle choice counts more. My poem Against the Lifeguard Cuts speaks from a place of being truly aghast at the potentially murderous ignorance of this
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described as ‘The Alienation of Labour’, and what others might call ‘mental health issues caused by having to participate in a hegemony that negates, exploits, and demeans most of humanity’. Some people don’t have jobs because they have been let down by the system, anywhere from early childhood to their current moment, and deserve better opportunities to fulﬁl their human potential rather than have it crushed further. We all deserve that. Praise for creativity obviously sings my own salvation, but as a teacher of creative writing and poetry, I have seen some of my students ﬁnd this same or comparable saviour in their own selves. Creativity, in whatever art form, is a way to connect with our true humanity and to repair our broken selves; and through this, connect with each other across all diﬀerences. Burning Eye Books, who seem to be making strong waves in the literary scene
government, and that the national debt be
right now, published your book -‐ was
made out to be more urgent than a call-‐out to any single drowning ﬁsherman, or surfer,
ﬁnding and choosing a publisher easy? No and yes. I knew that ﬁnding a publisher
or tourist on a beach. I wrote it in the style of a speech because it is a way of distilling
for what some would call ‘performance poems’ would be diﬃcult. I approached a
the list or reasons there are against such
literary sort of publisher and they said ‘not
madness, and the torrent of rage that accompanies these if I don’t distil them. So,
quite our thing’ which many performance poets have told me, seems to be a stock
rather than just rousing an audience, it is also a way of making personal and
reply. Many (but not all) superb performance poets have produced their
collective outrage more eloquent and
own books and recordings. So I thought
that seeing my own collection in print, may never happen other than by my own
eﬀorts. Then Jonny Fluﬀypunk showed me
see you popping up over the next few
his excellent poems, beautifully produced
in ‘A Sustainable Nihilist’s Handbook’ and told me about Burning Eye Books. I sent my
At Buckland-‐in-‐the-‐Moor Festival on August 24th; plus I will be launching
work to Clive Birnie, the editor, and had a most encouraging reply.
‘Ladygardens’ in Ashburton in early September – plus more gigs currently in
And how have you found the whole
the pipeline. For details about any of these,
publication process and the relationship between poet and publisher?
do follow me on Twitter, or Blogger, or my website at Wordpress.com – all easy to ﬁnd
Great. I do think it’s important to have a publisher who likes your work, as in they
if you type Lucy Lepchani into the appropriate box.
enjoy or relate to it, rather than someone
And Apples and Snakes have arranged me
who adheres to other agendas. Clive is clear, organised, quietly enthusiastic, and
some mentoring sessions with poet and performer/director Hannah Silva, so watch
has great aesthetic sense. He stated his preferences and opinions from poems I
this space for a new spoken word project in the future.
chose to include, but gave me all the power
And ﬁnally, how do you see the future of
to decide; and then, even after I disagreed with some of his choices and made my own decisions, I saw that he had been right – particularly concerning overall style. A good editor’s opinion is a privilege to receive – I’m glad I took this on board. Burning Eye Books certainly are making waves – some poets are into their second print run. The strapline on their website is
poetry? Some say it’s the arts’ dying breed; others live by the belief that it can change the world -‐ where do you stand? Whoever says it’s the arts’ dying breed, isn’t getting out to enough poetry and spoken word events. And whoever lives by that belief, what a brilliant and meaningful life it is. <
‘Never Knowingly Mainstream’ which I ﬁnd wickedly funny, every time I think of it. Yes, Burning Eye Books have style!
Ladygardens is available from Lucy’s blog:
What’s next for you in poetry -‐ do you have plans for a second collection?
And from the Burning Eye Books:
I’m currently researching for a book, a novel
lucylepchani.blogspot.co.uk burningeyebooks.wordpress.com lucylepchani.wordpress.com
based on my family’s heritage connections with India; but poems just happen. They are arriving with tropical butterﬂies in their images, with birdsong from the Himalayan foothills and with tears in their eyes. You’re a reputably strong performer of your work, where can people expect to
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Adrianos Sotiris “I have a world inside me. It is this that I try to process. And through this process, I learn lessons in self-knowledge. Sometimes I surprise even myself.”
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Where does the creative process start for you?
connection with our subconscious, our instincts, or our actions.
From a very early age I have had this primitive and ancient need to paint and to make sculptures. I remember myself when I was very young making things out of my imagination -‐ how I would like to be, or imaginary situations which took me on journeys. Sometimes, I decide about something I've thought of or an idea, to take a look at it through painting. At other times I want to communicate my thoughts to whoever sees the work.
I want man pure for what he is, and not seen in the light of the transient culture which we've shaped.
Usually a work starts out from my reflections on something, or something that I'm looking for in it. I have a world inside me. It is this that I try to process. And through this process, I learn lessons in self-‐knowledge. Sometimes I surprise even myself. What are the main influences on your work? I've always been interested in space-‐ time, recently in quantum physics, the primary instincts of man and nature, death, the female sex, and -‐ above all -‐ light. Your work has elements of the classical and the fantastical placed in a modern context. How would you describe the subject-‐matter of your paintings? What I usually want from my works is that they should be stripped of all material and superfluous objects of the age in which we live which have no
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What should good art convey? Art has many roles -‐ decoration, propaganda, imitation -‐ even entertainment. But I think its chief role is the search for the soul, of what we are and of the world around us. Contemporary art is a very divisive subject -‐ where do you see your medium of painting in oils in the modern world of art? Do oils still have the cultural power to shock, challenge, or enlighten to the same degree as they used to? In painting, when you attempt to capture light and colour by means of paint, you cannot help but be classical. But it doesn't cease to be the way the eye sees and the mind perceives. It is this that makes us simultaneously the same and different people. Over and beyond the beautiful work of art, we have to do with the revelation of what we are through painting. Some people perhaps think that photography has supplied the need that art once did, but we wonder at and learn from painting and sculpture of the palaeolithic age, down to the ancient Greek: 50,000 BC to 2,500 BC. Here I'd like to mention the protosculpture of Macedonia, with its
age estimated at around 700,000 years, which raises all kinds of questions. Two thousand, five hundred years of painting (given that we learn from Pliny the Elder that the ancient Greeks had painting and trends), and that's without including cave paintings -‐ and suddenly, within the space of a century, we write it all off? I believe that we are creating new kinds of art (we're not replacing the old). I believe that in the future, some works will belong in museums of decoration, museums of modern art, museums of architecture, museums of painting, etc. Painting and sculpture are the only -‐ direct -‐ process which makes us human, whereas the other electronic media (admirable as they are) are products of technology over time and industrial progress. In any event, painting as cubism and surrealism has left it has not ceased to be a cerebral game. * Not to mention Faraday, who discovered electro-‐magnetism and is, effectively, the father of today's media. He wasn't a professional mathematician or physicist, but he was very good at drawing. It was through this skill at drawing that he recorded his observations and experiments.
their metaphysical character, and a socio-‐political angle has, in part, entered into them. That's bad, from one point of view, for art, but in the times in which we live ... Has the Internet and digital technology changed the way you engage with audiences? The Internet has just replaced the old mail and has made art more accessible through the net and social networks. But the fact is that you still need your feet for seeing art. How do you see your role as an artist? My role is to be myself, purely, uninfluenced, and always to seek after the truth. And in this way, people, by studying and getting to know artists, can learn things about themselves. What are you currently working on and what does the future hold for you as an artist? My latest obsession was reflections -‐ and now telecommunications, television, and global consciousness.
How has the arts scene in Greece changed since the economic troubles began? Has it had any impact on your work? Prices have certainly taken a downturn. In my case, my works have, in part, lost
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Από πού ξεκινά η δημιουργική διαδικασία για σας ; 'Εχω απο πολύ μικρός αυτή τη πρωτόγονη και αρχαία ανάγκη να ζωγραφίσω ή να φτιάξω γλυπτά. Θυμάμαι τον εαυτό μου απο πολύ μικρό να κάνω πραματά της φαντασίας μου, πως θα ήθελα να είμαι ή φανταστικές καταστάσεις που με ταξίδευαν. Μερικές φορές κάτι που σκέφτομαι ή μια ιδέα, παίρνω την απόφαση να το δώ μέσω της ζωγραφικής. Αλλες φορές θέλω να επικοινωνήσω τις σκέψεις μου σε όποιον δεί το έργο. Συνήθως ένα έργο ξεκινάει απο τον προβληματισμό μου πάνω σε κάτι και την αναζήτηση μου σε αυτό. Μέσα μου έχω ένα κόσμο. Αυτό προσπαθώ να επεξεργαστώ. Και μέσα από αυτή τη διαδικασία παίρνω μαθήματα αυτογνωσίας. Μερικές φορές και εγώ ο ίδιος εκπλήσσομαι από τον εαυτό μου. Ποιές είναι οι κυρίως επιρροές στο έργο σας ; Πάντα με απασχολούσε ο χωροχρόνος , το τελευταίο καιρό η κβαντική φυσική, τα πρωτογενή ενστικτα του ανθρώπου και της φύσης, ο θάνατος, το γυναικείο φύλλο και ποιό πολύ απο όλα το φώς. Το έργο σας έχει στοιχεία κλασσικά και φανταστικά τοποθετημένα σε ένα σύγχρονο πλαίσιο. Πως θα περιγράφατε το περιεχόμενο των έργων σας ; Αυτό που θέλω συνήθως απο τα έργα μου είναι να είναι απογυμνωμένα απο υλικά και περιττά αντικείμενα της εποχής μας τα οποία ουδεμία άμεση σχέση έχουν με το υποσηνείδητό μας, τα ένστικτα μας ή της πράξεις μας.
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Θέλω τον άνθρωπο καθαρό για αυτό που είναι και όχι μέσα απο το πρίσμα του πρόσκαιρου πολιτισμού που έχουμε διαμορφώσει. Τι θα έπρεπε να μεταδίδει η καλή τέχνη ; Η Τέχνη έχει πολλούς ρόλους, διακοσμητικούς, προπαγανδιστικούς, μιμητικούς ακόμη και διασκεδαστικούς. Αλλά νομίζω ο κυρίως ρόλος της είναι η αναζήτηση της ψυχής , του τι είμαστε και του κόσμου γύρω μας Η σύγχρονη τέχνη είναι μιά υπόθεση που διίστανται-‐ που βλέπεται τη ζωγραφική σας με λάδι στο σύγχρονο κόσμο της τέχνης ; Εχει το λάδι ακόμη τη κοινωνική δύναμη να ταρακουνήσει, προκαλέσει ή διαφωτίσει όπως συνίθιζε? Στη ζωγραφική, όταν προσπαθήσεις να πιάσεις το φώς και το χρώμα δια μέσου της μπογιάς δε θα μπορέσει παρά να είναι κλασσικό. Αλλα δε παύει να είναι ο τρόπος που βλέπει το μάτι και αντιλαμβάνεται ο νούς). Αύτο είναι που μας κάνει ταυτόχρονα τόσο ίδιους και διαφορετικούς. Πέρα απο τον όμορφο πίνακα τέχνης έχουμε να κάνουμε με την ανακάλυψη του τί είμαστε μέσω της ζωγραφικής. Μερικοί ίσως νομίζουν πως η φωτογραφία κάλυψε την ζωγραφική όμως θαυμάζουμε και μαθαίνουμε ακόμη από ζωγραφικη και γλυπτά παλαιολιθικά, έως και αρχαιοελληνικά. 50.000 χρονια π.Χ.έως 2.500 χρόνια π.Χ. Εδω θα ήθελα να αναφέρω για τον φιλότεχνο και το πρωτόγλυπτο της Μακεδονίας το οποίο χρονολογείται γύρω στα 700.000 πΧ. (Protosculpture of Macedonia with its age esnmated to be around 700,000 years old.) το οποίο γεννά όλλων των ειδών τις ερωτήσεις.
2500 χρόνια ζωγραφικής (δεδομένου απο τον Πλίνιο τον πρεσβύτερο ότι οι Αρχαίοι Ελληνες είχαν ζωγραφική και ρεύματα) , για να μη συμπεριλάβω και τη ζωγραφική των σπηλαίων και ξαφνικά μέσα σε ένα αιώνα τα καταργούμε? Πιστεύω πως απλά δημιουργούμε νέα είδη τέχνης (δεν αντικαθιστάμε τα παλιά) Πιστεύω στο μέλλον κάποια έργα θα ανήκουν σε μουσεία διακόσμησης,μουσεία μοντερνας τέχνης, μουσεία αρχιτεκτονικής, μουσεία ζωγραφικής κ.α.
Εχει αλλάξει το διαδύκτιο και οι ψηφιακές τεχνολογίες το τρόπο που διαδράτε με το κοινό;
Η ζωγραφική και η γλυπτική είναι η μόνη -‐ άμεση-‐ διαδικασία που μας κάνει ανθρώπους, ενώ τα υπόλοιπα (αξιοθαύμαστα μεν ) ηλεκτρονικά μέσα είναι προιόντα χρόνιας τεχνολογικης και βιομηχανικής προόδου.
Ο ρόλος μου είναι να είμαι εγώ, καθαρός, ανηπηρέαστος και να αναζητώ πάντα την αλήθεια.
Εξάλλου δε παύει η ζωγραφική όπως την άφησε ο κυβισμός και ο σουρεαλισμός να είναι ένα εγκεφαλικό παιχνίδι. *Για να μην αναφέρω τον Φαραντέυ, που ανακάλυψε τον ηλεκτρομαγνητισμό και ουσιαστικό πατέρα των σημερινών media, ο οποίος δεν ήταν επαγγελματίας μαθηματικος ή φυσικός και ήξερε πολύ καλό σχέδιο. Μέσω αυτής της ικανότητας του σχεδίου του κατέγραψε τις παρατηρήσεις του και τα πειράματά του.
Διαδίκτυο έχει αντικαταστήσει τον παλιό ταχυδρομείο και έχει κάνει την τέχνη πιο προσβάσιμες μέσω των κοινωνικών δικτύων. Αλλά το γεγονός είναι ότι χρειάζεστε ακόμα τα πόδια σας για να δει την τέχνη. Πως βλέπετε το ρόλο σας ως καλλιτέχνη;
Και έτσι ο κόσμος μελετώντας και γνωρίζοντας τους καλλιτέχνες μπορεί να μάθει πράματα για τον εαυτό του. Σε τι δουλεύετε τώρα και τι σας επιφυλλάσει το μέλλον ως καλλιτέχνη; Τελευταία εμμονή μου ήταν με τον προβληματισμό και τώρα τηλεπικοινωνίες, την τηλεόραση και την παγκόσμια συνείδηση.
Πώς έχει επηρεάστει η Ελληνική καλλιτεχνική σκηνή από τις απαρχές των οικονομικών προβλημάτων ; Είχε επιπτώσεις στο έργο σας; Οι τιμές σίγουρα έχουν πάρει το κατήφορο. Εμένα προσωπικά τα έργα μου έχουν χάσει εν μέρη τον μεταφυσικό χαρακτήρα τους και έχει μπεί εν μέρη μια κοινωνικο-‐πολιτική γωνία. Κακό από τη μία για τη τέχνη και τον ύψιστο σκοπό της, αλλά στους καιρούς που ζούμε..
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Adrianos Sotiris facebook.com/pages/Adrianos-‐Sotiris
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Luca Loiudice & Alberto Gubernati
The collaboration between Luca Loiudice and Alberto Gubernati began in 2008 and the aim of their project is to mix some creative disciplines such as drawing, painting, scenography and performance all together through photography. Behind each artwork, there is a long and complex mechanism, and times of preparation in the most of cases cannot be shorter than 2-‐6 months for a single photo. Ideations of structures, painting, drawings, shapes and all stage elements are by Luca Loiudice. Use of lights and photography by Alberto Gubernati. Concepts and subjects by Loiudice/Gubernati. The first idea of our project was to relate some oil paintings with a model who, coming out from the paintings, became an integral part of the painting itself and the scene, as in EP2412, where we treat the theme of the birth. As in The dangerous game of a reckless puppet showman, in which a puppeteer has to do with a princess and where everything is placed in a theatrical setting. The basic concept later changes bringing the subjects in wider settlements as in the third picture of the series, TSP1. Here the set has been done painting the walls and the floor of an abandoned factory. The picture was made for a brand new song of a band of Turin entitled You, The Stars. TSP1 introduces a new element in the series: the play of lights made with fire which will be recreated in the future using the candles in other photos such as The DT Book. As regards this picture there is a curiosity: the set was built entirely using just pencil and Bic pen. The scene shows a girl who is dreaming what she is reading in the book that holds in her hands . Other photos as Nature Vs Technology and Snow HY29 are a return to the original idea (using natural spaces as natural sets) though placed in public spaces. Tetris continues the process that began with The DT Book, namely to make large settlements made entirely by hand using small paintbrushes. About the last two works: The bunny and the deer comes back to the idea of the music band of TSP1. In here there is a more playful intent (transmitted through the masks the two elements of the group was wearing) and in The spaceman (which, as Tetris, is accompanied by a stop motion video documenting the full work) the set is becoming increasingly rich in details and stage elements.
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La collaborazione tra Luca Loiudice e Alberto Gubernati nasce nel 2008 con l’obiettivo di mescolare alcune discipline artistiche come il disegno, la pittura, la scenografia e la performance tutte insieme attraverso la fotografia. Dietro ogni lavoro c’è un lungo e complesso meccanismo, ed il tempo per realizzare una singola foto nella maggior parte dei casi non può essere inferiore ai 2-‐6 mesi. Le ideazioni delle stutture, i disegni, la pittura, ciò che riguarda le forme e gli elementi di scena sono di Luca Loiudice. Le fotografie e l’uso delle luci per realizzarle sono di Alberto Gubernati. I concetti e i soggetti delle foto sono concordati insieme (Loiudice/Gubernati). L’idea iniziale del nostro progetto era di mettere in relazione dei dipinti ad olio con una modella che, uscendo dal dipinti forati, diventava parte integrante del dipinto stesso e della scena, come in EP2412 in cui trattiamo il tema della nascita e del parto. Come in The dangerous game of a reckless puppet showman, in cui un burattinaio è in relazione con una principessa e in cui tutto ciò è inserito in un ambiente teatrale. Il concetto di base successivamente cambia per portare i soggetti in ambientazioni più ampie come nella terza fotografia della serie, TSP1, realizzata dipingendo i muri ed il pavimento di una fabbrica abbandonata. La foto è stata realizzata per il lancio di un singolo di un gruppo musicale di Torino intitolato You, the stars. Con TSP1 viene introdotto un elemento nuovo: il gioco di luci realizzato con il fuoco. Questo gioco di luci sarà riproposto in futuro utilizzando delle candeline in altre fotografie come The DT Book, di cui la scenografia è stata realizzata nella parte verticale interamente a matita a penna bic. La scena mostra una ragazza immersa in una scena che rappresenta ciò che lei stessa sta leggendo nel libro che ha tra le mani. Altre fotografie successive come Nature Vs. Technology e Snow HY29 sono un ritorno all’idea di base seppur inserite in spazi pubblici. Con Tetris continua il percorso iniziato con The DT Book, cioè quello di realizzare scenografie di grandi dimensioni completamente realizzate a mano tramite un piccolo pennellino. Negli ultimi due lavori, The bunny and the deer (che ritorna all’idea della band di TSP1, seppur realizzata con un intento più giocoso trasmesso attraverso delle maschere da coniglio e da cervo che indossano due elementi del gruppo) e The spaceman (che come Tetris, è accompagnato da un video in stop motion che documenta il lavoro completo) le scenografie diventano sempre più ricche di dettagli e di elementi di scena.
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Simon Raab “The grenade is psychotic in a way. It can be good and bad. Disruptive ideas are well symbolised by the grenade.” Interview by Mark Doyle
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Where does the creative process start for you?
closed volume for a sculpture or on a wood frame as a wall piece.
The creative process usually begins with an emotional or intellectual response to something that happened in my day, which is either current or historical. I tend to think in images and concepts, so these responses often suggest some imagery, which leads to some conceptual sketches.
I try to get the look of “through water” by using specially formulated translucent paints which have to be adherent to the metal. I use aluminum when I want smoother softer surface profile. The deformation of the metal has now become an additional palette. Rough water and smooth water create different aesthetic responses. I can produce this effect by the frequency and sharpness of the surface deformations. This is like affecting the brush stroke and is critical to the mood of the Parleau piece. Stainless steel has a colder color and bends with sharper angles and hence is better at communicating certain moods.
Can you talk us through your workflow -‐ what materials do you use and why do you use them? I work in a new medium called Parleau which derived from the French term ‘par l’eau’ for “through water”. I have always been mesmerized by light and water and sought out a medium that provided the same abstraction and intensity of color along with a sense of the always-‐ changing and living nature of moving water. I developed a variety of painting techniques and materials, which I apply to stainless steel and aluminum. I was in search for a technique, which allowed me to deform the coated metals without cracking or flaking off the painted image. I paint the images with numerous layers of different polymers such as epoxy, polyurethane and acrylic, all adhered to the metal. The polymers are designed to be translucent allowing the metal to create a stained glass feel through the reflected light. My experience in surface physics and artificial joint implants provided the technical know-‐how necessary. Once the image is complete I deform the metal by hand and then by various metal forming tools as either a
The Parleau method is unique and was recently granted a US patent, one of very few patents in an art medium. I applied for the patent and trademark more as a stunt to criticise the industrialisation of art and branding. Has the internet and digital media changed the way you work? Has it changed the relationship with your audience or the way people engage with your art? I find that the internet and digital media has contributed in a number of positive ways. In the past we would have to rely on dealers and fairs to get in front of people. Today we go directly through a variety of social media and we can interact on an individual or group level around certain interests. Available imagery is also exploding. One can find images on every conceivable idea, I find this very inspiring and thought-‐
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provoking. The unfortunate downside of this onslaught of information is that we see just how many talented artists exist. It can be a little overwhelming. You say that you identify with the symbol of the grenade, as an agent of both creativity and destruction. Is art a constructive or destructive process for you? The grenade is psychotic in a way. It can be good and bad. Disruptive ideas are well symbolized by the grenade. Explode the old conventions and introduce new ideas. Disruptive thinking can be anarchic and destructive but it can also be evolutionary and revolutionary in the best sense of the words. The symbolism of shrapnel is also powerful for me. A good idea can stick in your head like a piece of shrapnel demanding to be remembered, annoying persistent and impossible to ignore. The grenade is also conflicted in imagery because it is a cute egg like toy-‐shaped bundle of death and disruption. Parleau is very much a constructive destructive process. A polished flat metal surface is lovingly prepared and painted with multiple coats of polymer to create a desired image. Then in a horrifying and destructive effort it is ruthlessly crushed and hammered. The original image, which is the product of hours of careful work is irrevocably destroyed. In the mounting and sculpting process I try to recover the image. What I find is an image aged, transformed, infused with a lifetime of experience which projects its new character with metallic flashes and motion. Does art still matter? Has the art world become too alienated from the general public as a medium for social and political comment and challenge?
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Factory art, found objects, decorative art markets and political cartoons, network comedy and satire, and popularization of graffiti have contributed mightily to conventional art’s loss of gravitas as a medium for social reform. The visual nature of media and the barrage of information have combined to leave art as a last refuge for pure aesthetics rather than yet another place for inciting change. The prices and publicity around the most currently famous artists and their work further alienate the thinking socially conscious class which is now pre-‐ occupied with the internet blogs and news feeds. The gallery system of approved artists and limited access has also alienated the transformational and nurtured the purely decorative. People are news-‐issue-‐exhausted in my opinion. I am beginning to think that mindless aesthetics may be what people need as a place to escape this exhaustion. In other words, the job of the social activist artist has become much more difficult. How does one provide a place of aesthetic peace and at the same time communicate a socially important position? I for one am experimenting with ways to do just that. What inspires you? Where do you draw your ideas for a piece from? Current events and conflicts in the context of history inspire much of what I do. I have a deep politics of personal accountability. I am angered by monopolies. Disgusted by unjustified wars fought for egotistical reasons. Mortified by injustice. I am a deep believer in privacy, the inalienable rights of man, the excesses of organized religion and sociopathy. My series “From
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Behind These Bars” speaks of personal accountability and the commitments we make to ourselves and others. The “For The Love Of War -‐ When Nothing Else Turns You On” series was motivated by my personal disgust with how often the lives of thousands are lost to the glory of war fought for the egos of individual men or the egos of a nation caught up in nationalistic righteousness. Most of my influences are writers and scientists. The individualist transcendentalist philosophies of Emerson and the writings of Balzac, in particular his “La Comédie humaine”, figure strongly in my fascination with people and their emotional and political relationship with society and freedom. The great scientists and scientific philosophers also provide me great inspiration. Scientists and scientific philosophers such as Archimedes, Lucretius, Newton, Einstein, Gauss, Planck, Darwin, Euler and Hamilton among so many others motivate my work. And what is the link between the scientist and the artist in you? I did change professionally from scientist to artist but I have always made art. As a young man, an artistic family surrounded me. My mother painted mystic landscapes, and my uncles and
aunts were sculptors, writers and designers. I loved working in wood and metals at an early age but changed medium throughout my education as I learned different methods, including glass blowing, welding, coating etc. So my scientific and artistic careers evolved together. With respect to science as an art form I am in the unique position to be able to state that the creative processes and imperatives are very similar for engineering and art. The demand for elegance, efficiency in message and function, the mix of media, all require the same cognitive abilities. Art and science are similar because they both rely on accidental discovery. Like art, science is often the search for knowledge with no practical purpose. Pure science like art is about the aesthetics of knowing our world and expressing our feelings about this world to no particularly practical end except knowing. What's next for you? Where would you like to take your art next? I am beginning a large multicomponent Parleau that will study the theme of art and money and their eternal partnership. < simonraabgallery.com
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Tomoe Ishida Love Letters To Glasgow “I am female, live in Osaka, Japan. I want to be an artist based in Glasgow, because I really love Glasgow. So I'm writing love letters to Glasgow. These are A4 paper cut with coloured paper collage.”
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Tomoe Ishida facebook.com/tomoe.ishida.528
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Akin Cetin “I believe every country has it’s own light.” Interview by Mark Doyle
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Where does the creative process start for you? My creative process is based on observation mostly, the first process of everything I do starts with cinema. I’m impressed a lot by the directors whose work I like, independent movies and asian cinema. What do you like about shooting with film stock as opposed to digital? I like the texture of analogue, collecting negatives and development process of the film. Also I have the limit of 36 frames and this disciplines me. While taking photographs with analogue, even 1 frame is important for me. I believe every country has it’s own light. I don’t like the light of the country I live in, and when that light unites with digital, it doesn't satisfy me. Your work has a very intimate feel to it -‐ your 35mm work looks like photographs that have been discarded and then found -‐ like lost memories. How would you describe your 35mm work? It’s hard to be explained by me. It would be like the mother who talks about her child all the time. Is your film making (video work) an extension or progression of your photographic work? What does film making mean to you as a creative? There would be a similarity as it’s visual, but no, it's not an extension. When taking a photograph I think about the moment, frame of it, I'm a formalist mostly, but in video it's not like that, there must be a unity in all. In photography you can put a meaning to 1 frame, but in video it's not like that, the thing you want to express is closed to interpretation mostly. But I like to leave it open-‐ended, open to interpretation. Maybe there can be a similarity between this, leaving both open to interpretation makes me get interesting feedback.
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Can you tell us about your Scan work? I’ve started my Scan work, as I found my mom’s photographs/documents/ letters etc. from childhood. I wanted to collect and keep all of these, the first thing came to my mind is to scan and gather all in a PC folder. And I did so, I gathered and scanned the files, documents, photographs that I had and I didn’t even guess it would be cared that much, but I became happy when I saw it’s loved. Now I have a more interesting plan about scanning, it excites me a lot. What role does photography have in modern society? How has digital technology impacted on our view of photography? Has digital been good or bad for photography? I want to tell this with an actual example. Recently – still continues – in my country, the facist attitude of the government provoked the people to rebellion. I’m also one of the protestors. Prime minister, wanted to destroy the trees in the center of here Taksim Gezi Park, to make a shopping center. People protested. And the media made broadcasts supporting completely the government, even irrelevant broadcasts. Many people was not aware of the goings-‐on. For example, tear gas and plastic bullets which are prohibited to use against civillians, are used. Then by the help of some social media sites, Turkey united, people became the media itself. Everyone was going to the resistance, taking their cameras and video cameras with them, photographing and recording the facist attacks of the police. Ruined by the gases used on us, we were going back home and turning back to the social media, seeing what police did more closely, reuniting, and the crowd was getting bigger day by day. I understood the effect of photography over the people more with this. I want to explain this from my point of view, I’m talking about a decision, not comparing. As a person who doesn’t like digital photography, it makes a burden on my mind which I’m not able to describe. No excitement remains against the photograph. With just one button, you get high definition photographs. You don’t get anything tactile that you can keep. There’s no difference between the fish in the aquarium and digital photography, you can’t hold and caress both. As I said, I never compare, mine is a choice. But I can say that; I think digital photography contributes to photography, with the help of digital photography instant photographs reach people at that exact moment, no need to develop the film, cheaper and fast. What do you have planned next? I’m into collage lately. I’m thinking about doing some work in this area. Something between scannning and collaging. < akincetin.com
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Anthony Dortch dortchdesigns.com
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Christine Platt The Passion for Abstraction
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The art in Toronto is diverse in medium, style and
about Paul-‐Emile Borduas, Jean-‐Paul Riopelle,
approach. Many critics and academics have tried
Claude Tousignant, the Painters Eleven
to define the local scene and largely they agree that it’s defining characteristic is its diversity.
(especially Jack Bush) or please read Abstract Painting in Canada by Roald Naasgard.
Nevertheless, certain movements, however incongruous they may be, can be teased out. In
Several contemporary, established, Canadian
Toronto, the most notable art trend which I have
artists have been working continuously, although
seen since arriving two years ago is abstraction. In fact, over the past five years, in all the cities I have
not necessarily exclusively, in abstraction for decades, including Michael Snow, Robert Youds,
visited (Amsterdam, Eindhoven, Rotterdam, Berlin, Paris, Edinburgh, Glasgow, Istanbul,
James Carl and Stephane La Rue. Remarkably, these artists continue to produce new abstract
Beijing, Hong Kong, Boston, Havana, Montreal,
works with both technical skill and intellectual
Toronto), I have not seen a city with as interesting and varied abstract art as I have seen in Toronto.
fervour, which Torontonians clearly love. Only a few months ago the Museum of Canadian
This includes art being produced by Toronto-‐born artists, those works produced in Toronto by non-‐
Contemporary Art exhibited Michael Snow’s latest works in which abstract colour blocks on a
local artists and those brought from other
screen reacted to the viewers eyes. Soon after
Canadian cities to Toronto to fulfill the taste for abstract art in the city, as evident in the number
David Armstrong’s intriguing abstract metal sculptures were paired with Louise Bourgeois’
of Canadian abstract artworks sold and shown at local galleries. The works are shown in all the
abstract, iconic “personages” sculptures. Robert Youds latest show of abstract paintings at Diaz
variety Toronto is known for: in commercial and
Contemporary Gallery, in which Youds stamped
public spaces, in a variety of mediums and materials, to varying degrees of abstraction with
large slabs of wood onto canvas and then painted fading colour blocks strategically across,
hugely different inspirations and connections to the past.
garnered significant attention from both collectors and critics. James Carl’s unforgettable solo show of abstract sculptures made from
These artists come by this trend honestly, as historically artists in Canada have worked quite
coloured window blinds, entreating you to imagine yourself huddled inside, recently closed
independently and effectively in this style. This may come as a surprise, as few Canadian
at Diaz Contemporary Gallery. And Stephane La Rue’s geometric forms on bent paper from last
abstractionists have made it into the “Western”
year were just put on display in the TD bank
art canon. Nevertheless they worked at the same time as the European and American
building. Every one of these shows were refreshing in their use of abstraction, from new
abstractionists and many continued thereafter. For a quick history lesson, I suggest you read
undergirding concepts to different techniques and materials.
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In addition to these established artists are new
Ceramic Museum successfully created abstract
artists in the field of abstraction. In fact, the
ceramic sculptures from the foam surrounding
current group show at Angell Gallery, devoted to abstractionists, nods to the importance of the
contemporary consumer products, making us question uses and value of things. The Royal Bank
movement in Toronto. In the show you can see Vessna Perunovich’s piece made of plastic ties
of Canada Painting Competition finalists included two Torontonian abstract painters, Neil Harrison
arranged with nails in a wheel formation. It is
and Scott Everingham and the winner from
abstract in form, but conceptual in nature as it looks almost like barbed wire and the ties in this
Vancouver, Colleen Heslin, was also an abstract painter. In fact, there has been at least one, if not
arrangement remind one of their use to bind the hands of prisoners in war. Daniel Hutchinson’s
more, abstract painters short-‐listed for the award every year of its existence. There are countless
pieces from his Painting for Electric Light series
other abstract artists working and showing in
are wholly different works, geometric forms and waves painted in black with colored lights shone
Toronto, which I have not named in this article. Many of them are also worth following, and
upon them to create a dance of form and colour. Derek Mainella has flatly painted, untitled
undoubtedly contribute to the excitement and fervour around this movement in the city.
canvases with tears across them in ordered and seemingly unordered fashion; each work producing a visceral response. Down the street
Through the diversity of medium, form, concept and practice of these artists, abstraction in
one finds the works of Alex Fischer at O’Born contemporary. These mixed-‐media abstract
Toronto offers a freshness of perspective on abstract art and an exciting burst of energy in
works, especially the collage works made with
pushing the boundaries of abstract art as it has
photoshop, dip into the psyche to a place that is at once familiar and yet unrecognizable.
previously been defined. <
Other current artists working exceptionally in
Christine Platt artventurestoronto.com
abstraction include Janet Jones, with her techno-‐ sublime works abstracted from the city and our current urban reality of obscenely rushing from bright lights, work and parties into the dangerous vortex of meaninglessness. Alison Rossiter, showed at Stephen Bulger Gallery recently with her photographs made from early 20th century film, developed and arranged to elicit diverse intellectual and emotional responses. An Te Liu, who just had an exhibition at the Gardiner
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Sylwia Kubus Delan Cookson
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White Dust Ghosts – a series of haiku poems waking the kraken this irregular sonnet of men and angels childhood kiss the shadow of gypsophila in the wheel blue sky rain the sunshine leaks from pavements leaves begin to fall this face too evolves from ﬁsh bomber moon– all those hiding places within you hee, ba, coo, sha even the name suggests peace Nagasaki anniversary
There are people who survived the atomic bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki. In Japanese, the atomic bomb survivors are known as Hibakusha, some are still alive and share their experiences in the hope of peace and the abandonment of nuclear weapons. This is the 68th anniversary of atomic bombing on Nagasaki, August 9th 1945 Alan Summers
Alan Summers lives in Bradford on Avon, England, and runs With Words, which provides literature, education and literacy projects, as well as online courses often based around the Japanese genres. He is a co-‐editor for Bones Journal (contemporary haiku), and Special Feature Editor for Lakeview International Journal of Literature and Arts. His latest collection Does Fish-‐God Know contains gendai haiku and short verse published by Yet To Be Named Free Press, with a forthcoming book titled Writing Poetry: the haiku way.
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Illustration by Rose Packer
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The Minister In essential things my father will only go so far, Never speaking beyond a certain acceptable, Credible depth. As children he told to us of Real events I transcribed for school, papers ending, 'it's tru'. Even so, he was careful to wrangle the monsters, Devils inhabiting the ﬂesh-‐masks of men. These Incredible lives he lived through and dreaded, Babies the size of a bean he baptized by hand, with Loving would-‐be mothers weeping and bloody in beds. I Expect such stories estranged him from all of us. How could you sleep with a brain brimming with memories of Ordinary skin-‐slip warping the features of the Wounded, born-‐dead thing you saved for Alpha-‐Omega? In essential things, my father will only go so far. Bethany W. Pope
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somewhere on myrtle avenue somewhere on myrtle avenue near palmetto, a garden of weeds behind a faded silver chain link fence, an empty log with the wind blowing cold and drunks propped against narrow doors. puerto rican teenagers in the street. a mcdonalds, east, rancid coﬀee for 50 cents a cup, my meal to feast on -‐ these features of exotic urban bohemia. i suppose ﬂowers are a relative picture. i stare at all my wild roses. Carl Kavadlo Carl Kavadlo is a poet and short story writer. His short stories have appeared in the Long Island University Muse, Rusty Typer, Mad Swirl and Loch Raven Review. His poems have appeared in Erato, Stained Sheets, Rogue Scholars, Brownstone Poetry, Clockwise Cat, Flutter, Mobius, Loch Raven Review, Mad Swirl, Miriam’s Well, Amphibius and others. He has recently become a contributing poet in Mad Swirl’s Poetry Forum. He lives in Brooklyn, NY, with his wife.
Illustrations by Polly Morwood
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Cup 1. Kent set his coﬀee cup down on the table, and dipped in the small wooden stirrer in search of the drink’s vanishing point -‐ that is to say, the depth at which the tip of the stirrer or spoon becomes lost in the blackness of the coﬀee. Doing so allowed him to gauge without sipping the approximate strength of the coﬀee based on the amount of the stirrer left wet, not unlike assessing the depths of an uncharted ocean with knots on a rope. It was for this reason why he often made the unconventional choice of a china cup with a disposable stirrer. The vanishing point came between a third and a half of the stirrer’s entire length. This was a good balance, enough to stave oﬀ a headache and boost his wakefulness without pushing him into an all-‐out caﬀeine high. He lifted the cup and began to sip. As soon as he had drawn in his ﬁrst mouthful, his momentary peace was disturbed by a bizarre, high-‐pitched wailing noise. Unsettled by this sound, he set the cup back down on the table and scanned the room for a possible source. The coﬀee shop around him did not seem to have noticed the noise. As he scanned the room, he saw
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hipsters with headphones staring intently at tablets. Middle aged couples locked in intense conversation. The teenage girl at the counter battling through espresso machine steam to deliver the next latte, the next cappuccino. By this point, Kent’s mind had wandered away from the noise, and he lifted the cup again to his lips. The noise came again, less as a wail this time, and more as a panicked yelp. The sort of yelp one might expect from an unconscious patient waking up to the sight of an IV being ripped out. The sort of yelp one might expect from a caged animal in a lab experiment discovering that their food was electriﬁed. It came with such force that it startled him into dropping his cup onto the table, where it fell lopsided, spilling much of the coﬀee. The cafe continued on unfazed. Neither the yelp nor the thud of china onto the laminate table had broken through the surface noise of the room. He watched As the coﬀee cascaded across the table and dripped over the edges and onto the ﬂoor. He watched the cup, now on its side, rolling across the table until its handle hit the surface, at which point it stopped and began slowly rolling in the other direction. He was not prepared for what he saw on the cup’s far side.
As the cup rotated further, it revealed a face. A face frozen into an expression of bug-‐eyed shock, as if in disbelief of its surroundings. It began to speak. It spoke slowly and weakly, but with a timbre matching the yelps and wails of before. “what... ...the fuck...” He leaned in closer to the cup, his attention undivided.
more conﬁdent than before. Still quite high pitched, but no longer wavering or broken by excessive gaps. Perhaps this was because it was now totally full. The girl from the counter had seen the spill, and was approaching the table with a handful of paper towels.
“You better not tell her that this was my fault”, said the cup. “Everybody wants to blame it on the cup”.
He picked up the now empty cup and set it again upright on the table.
The girl was at the table. “Is everything alright here?”, she asked as she began to clean up.
“I feel... ....so very... ...dry”, it continued, its eyes still glazed over.
“My cup is talking to me”, Kent replied.
It paused for a moment, as if to compose itself. After some time in silence, it ﬁxed its gaze upon him. “reﬁll?” 2. Kent ordered another Americano at the counter, this time in a disposable cup. He brought it back to his desk, and decanted the drink into his original cup. You know, the one with the face. The one that could talk. “Don’t sneak up on me like that. I hate it when people sneak up on me”, it said. Its voice was
“Oh, that’s just Wyatt. Such a drama queen”, she said as she mopped the coﬀee from the table. “He’s new here. Still hasn’t quite adjusted to the way we do things. It’s a problem we tend to have with some of the wild cups we bring in. Of course, it’s more humane to the cup than having them made in a factory, all doped up and atrophied like battery hens, but they can be hard work” “Excuse me?” “A lot of these cups, you know, they just don’t want to be tamed. They grow accustomed to the wild, it’s all they’ve ever
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known. All they ever like to do is just sit outside, get loaded up with espresso and meditate on their fullness until they grow cold. Then they empty themselves out and do the same again. It’s such a waste, isn’t it? A waste of a life, not to mention of a perfectly serviceable cup. But some of them like it like that. They don’t like the structure of a working life. They can’t acclimatize to being dormant for hours upon hours each day, and then suddenly going from full to empty to full again to empty again once the shop opens. And the dishwasher! Well, some of them can handle it and some of them can’t. For some it’s bliss, they love to feel clean and refreshed and ready for another long workday. And for others, it’s their hell. A claustrophobic bad trip that seems to last forever. I’ve had to put some of them into their own cupboard, with sponge walls to muﬄe the sound of screaming. Night terrors -‐ the machine sets them oﬀ, endless nightmares about drowning, night after night. A few nights away and they calm down, get a grip and learn to sleep in peace, but then they get dirty and they need to be washed again. Sure, I could hand-‐wash the troublesome ones, but why reward the least functional, least productive ones with all that extra care and attention? If anyone deserves a hand-‐wash, it’s the most docile ones. The ones that hold their
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liquid well, enjoy the machine and don’t disturb anybody at night. And they’re already happy doing what they’re here to do, so what would be the point in that?” “Yes”, Kent replied, “I suppose that would be a waste”. Over the course of the last few minutes a queue had developed at the counter. The girl returned there to begin serving again. Kent sensed that things were running the risk of becoming awkward. He sat there and stared at Wyatt, who stared back in an unblinking silence. “It’s cool”, Wyatt said after some time. “I won’t freak out this time”. Kent raised the cup again, and began to sip. As he drank the coﬀee, he heard from Wyatt not a yelp, but a whisper. “You have to get me the fuck out of here”. “I bet he says that to everyone”, Kent thought to himself. Lance Wyoming of Wander as Ghosts
Illustration by Polly Morwood
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