Monday, December 21, 2009

The Word Show

For anyone still out there checking this blog from time to time -- hello. I've been absent from the blogosphere for a while. Lots going on -- as with most folks these days. Family, work, home, art, study.

As mentioned in earlier blog posts, my partner's sister, Sharon Webster, is a poet and visual artist in Vermont who, this past month, curated an exhibition in Burlington called "The Word Show," an inventive collection of works that mix text and images. Included in the group of artists in the show are Iraq veterans, Drew Cameron and Jon Turner, who have been active with the "Combat Paper" project, creating art with paper made from the cloth of military uniforms. One of their pieces is shown above, an interactive display that invites viewers to put their own prayers into the boots strung on the wall.

Combat Paper artists were also in Texas last month to do a paper-making workshop in San Antonio and a writing workshop at the Under The Hood cafe in Killeen. I find the project a very meaningful form of creative resistance to war, as well as a vehicle for dealing with the effects of PTSD related to combat experience.

Some of the paper made with the uniforms becomes a medium for visual art, poetry and prose. Pieces have been published online and in both hand-made and traditionally printed books through the Warrior Writers project. See more about Warrior Writers here.

photos: (top two) Poetry book covers by Jon Michael Turner
(lower two) "Prayer Boots," an installation by Drew Cameron and Jon Michael Turner
from "The Word Show" at Flynndog Gallery, Burlington, VT
photos by Sharon Webster

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