Visual Arts and Poetry Combine in Second Sight/Insight II

Posted: January 6, 2015
Source: Katie Houston
Job Title: Marketing & PR Coordinator
Phone: 269-349-7775 x3112


KIA Opens Exhibition January 10: Second Sight/Insight II

KALAMAZOO MI - A new exhibition pairing art with poems by area writers opens at the Kalamazoo Institute of Arts on January 10. Second Sight/Insight II is curated by poet and fiber artist Elaine Seaman, who was invited to reprise a 2005 KIA exhibition concept with new art and poets.

After choosing 30 pieces - many rarely seen works by lesser-known artists - she put out a call to invite local poets to participate. Among the group are two mother-daughter pairings: Gail and Kaitlin Martin and Kathy and Kaili Doud.

"It's a privilege to have my work in a show with my daughter," Kathy Doud says. "She is an elegant, inventive and lyrical poet, and each of her poems surprises and delights me."

Much like Double Take: Artists Respond to the Collection (on view through January 18), the response concept results in a range of provocative pairings.

"Some get into the story of the art, some choose to analyze the work a teeny-tiny bit," says Seaman. "But they all fit really well, and act as true companion pieces to the artworks."

The show features writers Kit Almy, Scott Bade, Marion Boyer, James Croteau, Kiana Donae, Kaili Doud, Kathy Doud, Danna Ephland, Deborah Gang, Gail Griffin, Hedy Habra, Elizabeth Kerlikowske, Bill Lucking, Kathleen McGookey, Jill Marcusse, Gail Martin, Kaitlin Martin, Donna McClurkan, Marsha Meyer, Lynn Pattison, Robert Post, Susan Ramsey, Doris Ravotas, Jack Ridl, Julie Stotz-Ghosh, Stephen Tod, McKenzie Tozan, Pam Uschuk, and Debra Wierenga.

Many of the poets are repeat participants, but about a dozen are new to the exhibition, which continues through May 10.

Lynn Pattison wrote poems for both shows, this time working with a black and white photograph, O. Winston Link's Steam Locomotive (605).

"I had no idea what to do with the wonder I felt when I first saw it close up," says Pattison. "I remember telling my husband how black the black was, how mysterious the figure in steam, how imposing the engine. Then we went to Paris. We were waiting to board a train at Gare St. Lazare to visit Giverny, and I found myself thinking of Monet's studies of light and smoke and steam. That felt like my way in, and I started writing."

First-timer Kaili Doud says the experience was gratifying, suggesting, "I could have written a hundred poems on this same piece." She credits Kalamazoo with a supportive literary community.

"No other place I've been has quite the open, enthusiastic, intimate culture of writing and creative sharing that Kalamazoo has. Kalamazoo's student writing/poetry culture, which I'm most familiar with, is especially incredible: in my experience, progressive, welcoming, and the place I and so many of my peers have found a voice."

Planned programs for the exhibition include a public tour on Sunday, February 1 at 2 pm; an ARTbreak presentation by Elaine Seaman on Tuesday, February 3 at noon, and Art Hop: Friday, February 6, 5-8 pm. Poetry readings will be included at each event.