Posts

Videopoem: Follow the Curve of Birth (2:48min)

Image
direct link: Follow the Curve of Birth

The footage is Aurelia aurita, shot at Ripley's Aquarium in Toronto.

This time, I did the whole production: wrote the prosepoem, whispered it into the mic, composed the sound textures on a keyboard, shot and edited the video. ©Brenda Clews 2014.

One of my birth pieces, written when I was abandoning an academic stream and moving towards poetry and art ...revised for this videopoem.


___

April 26th Poetry Salon: Michael Mirolla and Claudio Gaudio

Image
On the last Saturday of every month, from 3-5pm, I will be hosting a Poetry Salon at Urban Gallery! We will have 2 or 3 features and of course Open Mic. Please put the recurring date on your calendar.

The next Poetry Salon is on Saturday April 26th. And what a line-up!



Michael Mirolla

Novelist, short story writer, poet and playwright, Michael Mirolla’s publications include a punk-inspired novella, The Ballad of Martin B.; three novels: Berlin (a Bressani Prize winner and recently translated into Latvian); The Facility, which features among other things a string of cloned Mussolinis; and The Giulio Metaphysics III, a novel/linked short story collection wherein a character named “Giulio” battles for freedom from his own creator; two short story collections: The Formal Logic of Emotion (translated into Italian as La logica formale delle emozioni) and Hothouse Loves & Other Tales; and three collections of poetry: Light and Time, the English-Italian bilingual Interstellar Distances – Di…

A Peek Inside the Palace of Palaces: THE FORBIDDEN CITY at the ROM

Image
Yeah, one of those nuts that takes 3 pages of hand-written notes on her tablet when she goes to a show at the ROM (you are not allowed to photograph or even draw the exhibits in shows like these - all locked up for the gift shop - you want, you buy - but taking notes is permissible). What you gonna do with me? KJ Mullins kindly accepted an offer to write an article from them for newz4u.net, and it's been published now. I wrote the review far too quickly. But hopefully it works for you. If people who read it go to see the show who might not have otherwise I will be exceptionally happy. It's a fascinating offering from The Forbidden City and well worth seeing.


"How can a museum in another city on another continent show the scope of the riches of the Forbidden City? The ROMs show has 250 treasures from the Forbidden City, of which about 80, including armour, textiles, paintings and calligraphy, have never travelled before. The ROMs choices are sparse against a total of 1.8 …

A Peek Inside the Palace of Palaces: THE FORBIDDEN CITY at the ROM

Image
KJ Mullins published an article I wrote on the Forbidden City show at the Royal Ontario Museum. My article has a different slant to that taken by most of the other reviewers for newspapers and on-line magazines, who didn't seem, overall, to be hugely impressed with the show. I do hope a few folks make their way to the ROM to see it based on my response. The offerings from the Forbidden City are well worth seeing.

A Peek Inside the Palace of Palaces: THE FORBIDDEN CITY at the ROM



Clay Lady (test video)

Image
Since this is a test-run, a video-in-process, a test of the writing for what I hope to do in the 'real' one, you probably don't need to watch it unless you would like to offer a comment that might help me compose the final video.



direct link: Clay Lady (test)

During the Autumn of 2013, I attended a figurative sculpture session at the Toronto School of Art with Florian Jacot. Throughout the 13 weeks of sculpting from a live model, I took photographs. In December of 2013, I searched for a turntable to video the finished little sculpture spinning but did not include that footage in the video just completed (I have included a 25sec clip at the end of this post). Yesterday I finally set a painting on the floor of my living room as a back-drop, set up a Canon 60D, sat down and read from my notebook. It's off-the-cuff, no preparation, a test run. I also had composed a Picasa album last Fall documenting the progress of the sculpture and made that into a mini video and added it…

Clay Lady test shot

Image
Clay Lady (a video) - still from a test of the poem & talk. I'll probably upload the test vid too.
___

Poetry Salons @ Urban Gallery Continue

Image
It's official: I will be hosting monthly Poetry Salons at Urban Gallery on the last Saturday of each month from 3-5pm. Urban Gallery is a wonderful gallery and I am most honoured to be asked to host salons and very happy to be part of the art scene developing at the Gallery. Thanks to Calvin Hambrook, Allen Shugar and Kaspara Albertsen!



___

Lady in Red Corset

Image
Lady in Red Corset (or some such title), life-drawing @ Urban Gallery 1 Feb 2014 (but finished tonight), model: Manminder, by Brenda Clews, 11" x 15", charcoal, graphite, India inks, pastels, etc., on primed canvas sheet.

The red ink might still be sticky, wet enough, and it is photographed at night under daylight bulbs with sheets of mylar hung over them - in daylight, there would be more detail and the colours might be slightly different shades.

On another front, NaPoWriMo is going well, and I am managing to keep up - but posting privately.

___

Image
Due to anxiety over those who fly by and swipe a line, an image, a concept, an approach, a theme and use it to build their own little poetry nests elsewhere on the NET without referencing their source or giving credit to me or my work, which happened constantly when I used to openly post my writing, I simply cannot post poetry here. As I move through the block caused by this behaviour of seemingly well-educated and ethical writers, and on the advice of my analyst, who I discussed the issue at length with, including names, sites, specific examples when I was still seeing him, I find I'd like to continue writing on-line.

So I will have to do it in a private blog.

I have, of course, been writing throughout but in bursts and then reading the poems in Open Mics around the city where, I know, no-one really listens - because it's too hard to and with say three featured poets and 10 Open Mics one can't place a single poem in a context to analyze its value and what can potentially …

April is poetry month

Image
Besides a (for me, heartbreaking) issue with Picasa albums and Blogger, which has kept me from posting, and may drive me from this blog ultimately, who knows,

I had wanted to write something every day for the month of April for poetry month, which I've never done before.

With other stuff going on in my life, I forgot entirely.

So I found something I scribbled on the 14th of March, which really encapsulates so very much and yet which, of course, maintaining the silence on my personal life that I have mostly adhered to in this blog, I will not speak about.


The world couldn't open up when I was being held under a viewpoint like that.
It's not much, I know. But it appears to be part of a growing series of poems that, in their entirety, give forth more meaning than I could offer here.
Oh, I am being opaque, and no apologies, and I may continue to post whatever here or in another totally private blog during this month.
I just hope the poetry nest-builders who fly by and grab line…

Ink Ocean featured at Art and Earth

Image
Ann Marcaida featured my performance videopoem, Ink Ocean, at Art and Earth yesterday.


Responses to Ink Ocean:

"Wow, what a trip. You've made something passionate out of this collision of many technologies and layers. Thank you." John Oughton (who jammed the über cool inky ocean music) "GREAT WORK Brenda, really great. I enjoyed every minute of it, choreography, words, music, background video. WOW." Pierre-Marie Cœdès "You did a fine job of editing, regardless of the circumstances. The surrounding imagery works very effectively, together with your combined dance and spoken word performance and the music. You prevailed over the lighting limitation and static camera. The result is indeed moving, as well as imaginative." Allan Briesmaster"Outstanding video effects, excellent message and a perfect musical accompaniment. I especially enjoyed the golden orange segment which you had earlier shared a preview of. Another great piece of artistic work."…

First attempts at digital drawing...

Image
Because I like to draw at poetry readings and many of them are in dark bars where there is not enough room to spread art supplies and there is not enough light to see your page, I started, this weekend, to explore drawing and painting apps on my (smallest, cheapest, non-retina, 2013) iPad Mini (purchased to show Gallery owners my work and it did get me the show at Urban Gallery almost immediately).

All of these sketches were done in each of the apps without looking at, let alone reading, the manuals, instructions or anything else. While I've never used any paint programs, I have used Photoshop for years and so it wasn't hard to figure out an instrument (pencil, pen, crayon, brush), a thickness, a colour. Of all of the programs, Brushes proved to be too hard to figure out - and will require a thorough reading of the manual at some point. I liked the animation video Brushes created of the drawing though I was not able to export it. They are all powerful programs that offer the a…
Image
I sold a painting!! Gone to a good home! I'm so happy!


Every Angel is terror' (Rilke), 2011, 18” x 22” x 1", charcoal, acrylic and oil on canvas in a drop mount birch frame.

"Every Angel is terror. And yet, ah,
knowing you, I invoke you, almost deadly
birds of the soul" from Rilke, 2nd Duino Elegy
___

Ink Ocean: A Video of a Live Performance with Images and Videos from the Gulf Oil Spill Added.

Image
It's my birthday, and I won't tell you how old I am, but I did get this video finished finally. The last step was subtitling it, and got that done by 11pm. I worked long and hard on this video of a performance I did at Urban Gallery on January 30th, and hope you take away something of the sadness and outrage over the Gulf Oil Spill and what we are doing to our world even as we have to continue loving in an increasingly polluted world...


direct link: Ink Ocean

Brenda Clews performs her poem, Ink Ocean, live at Urban Gallery in Toronto during a Performance Poetry Salon she organized there during her Poempaintings show in 2014. http://brendaclews.com; http://urbangallery.ca

John Oughton plays his electric guitar with his magic box of sounds: http://library.utoronto.ca/canpoetry/oughton/index.htm

All the extra clips (except for the drawing, see below) are from public domain video and photographs of the Deepwater Horizon Gulf oil spill in 2010.

'Ink Ocean' is about the oi…

Our Beach

Image
For those fun sun lovers who go south each winter, some photos: our beach; our beach with what-appears-to-be a swarm of fireflies; and a selfie in a beach cover-up that keeps all the uv rays off - if I appear a little bright-eyed it's because I took the Ray-Bans off and am blinking in the flood of sunlight. The dog also has a special beach cover-up in the first photo that protects her against harmful uv rays. You can't be too careful on the beach!



___