Writing Off the Walls

Creativity in the age of CoVID

Brought to you by Hudson Valley & Studio Theater in Exile
White Flag #8, 2015

A.A. Bronson

Canadian, born 1946

White Flag #8, 2015
Rabbit skin glue, champagne chalk, raw honey on linen, cotton, cotton rope on linen
59.1 x 114.1 inches

AA Bronson, nee Michael Tims, Vancouver, Canada,1946, was a founding member of the artists' group General Idea. During their twenty five year association, General Idea produced work in every conceivable medium, pioneering video and performance work as well as producing artist’s books, photographs, sculptures, multiples, prints as well as installations, and public art projects. They sought to examine and subvert social structures, taking particular interest in the products of mass culture. They began publishing their ideas and work in File, a quarterly journal published in Toronto. In the late 1980s they focused their attention on the AIDS epidemic. General Idea ended when Bronson’s partners died of AIDS in 1994.

Since then AA has worked and exhibited as a solo artist, often collaborating with younger generations Since 1999 he has worked as a healer, an identity that he has also incorporated into his artwork. From 2004 to 2010 he was the Director of Printed Matter, Inc. in New York City, founding the annual NY Art Book Fair in 2005. In 2009 he founded the Institute for Art, Religion, and Social Justice at Union Theological Seminary in New York City, which he now co-directs. In 2013 he was the founding Director of Printed Matter's LA Art Book Fair. He has taught at UCLA, the University of Toronto, and the Yale School of Art.

He has had solo exhibits in the UK, Berlin, Finland, Basel, Munich, Austria; 10th Gwangju Biennale, Gwangju, Toronto.  Group exhibitions include The Jewish Museum, New York; Museum of Contemporary Art, Chicago; The Balcony, Toronto National Gallery of Canada, Ottawa; LA, Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles.

Someone Great is Gone, 2013

Jeffrey Gibson

American, born 1972

Someone Great is Gone, 2013
Elk hide, acrylic, paint, graphite, colored pencil

73 x 66 inches

Jeffrey Gibson’s multimedia practice synthesizes the cultural and artistic traditions of his Cherokee and Choctaw heritage with the visual languages of Modernism and themes from contemporary popular and queer culture. His work is a vibrant call for queer and Indigenous empowerment, envisioning a celebration of strength and joy within these communities.

Jeffrey Gibson grew up in major urban centers in the United States, Germany, Korea, and England. He received a Bachelor of Fine Arts in painting from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago in 1995 and Master of Arts in painting at the Royal College of Art, London, in 1998. He is a citizen of the Mississippi Band of Choctaw Indians and is half Cherokee. He is currently an artist-in-residence at Bard College and lives and works near Hudson, New York.

Gibson’s artworks are in the permanent collections of many major art museums, including the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, the Smithsonian, the National Gallery of Canada, the Nasher, the Nerman, Crystal Bridges, and the Denver Art Museum. Recent exhibitions include SCAD Museum of Art (Savannah and Atlanta), National Academy Museum in New York, Institute of Contemporary Art Boston, Cornell Museum of Fine Art, Denver Art Museum and Ruth and Elmer Wellin Museum of Art.  He has participated in Greater New York, Prospect New Orleans, the Everson Biennale, and Site Santa Fe. Gibson is a member of the faculty at Bard College and a past TED Foundation Fellow and Joan Mitchell Grant recipient.  He was included in the 2019 Whitney Biennial. In 2019 he received a MacArthur Foundation genius award.

Studio Theater in Exile

“Theatre takes place all the time wherever one is, and art simply facilitates persuading us this is the case”

- John Cage

A Call to All Poets and Writers

Writing Off the Walls

Creativity in the age of CoVID

Brought to you by Hudson Valley & Studio Theater in Exile

Submission Guidelines

Bodoni, Blue Uniform (Tito), 2010
Bodoni, Blue Uniform (Tito), 2010
Moris, El Dueno de todo, 2020
Moris, El Dueno de todo, 2020

May 1 Poets and writers are invited to submit works for one or two voices inspired by the art in How We Live: Part II at Hudson Valley MOCA. How We Live: Part II can be viewed along with background information on the artists
(click image for artist bio). A video walk through of the exhibition is also available.

  • June 15: Submission deadline. A committee of writers, artists, and poets, who will not be submitting, will choose works for inclusion. All pieces are read anonymously. Writers can submit up to 3 pieces. Submissions must be Calibri font, 11 point and fit on one page each. Submissions should be sent to bothmara.mills@studiotheaterinexile.com and joann.brody@hudsonvalleymoca.org.
  • June 25: Notifications of acceptance are sent.
  • July 24: Selected literary works are framed and placed on the walls near the art that served as inspiration. The poetry will also be posted as an on-line catalogue at hudsonvalleymoca.org and StudioTheatreinExile.com.
  • Audio/videos of selected artists reading will also be posted. Deadline TBA.
  • Writers must be Artist Members to be included.
  • TBA (CoVID dependent): Date for live readings and walk through the exhibition.

Hope you will join us for Writing Off the Walls: Creativity in the Age of CoVID.
Mara, Livia and Jo-Ann

Questions about the project please contact mara.mills@studiotheaterinexile.com

Studio Theater in Exile
Hudson Valley MOCA

Background Information

Bronson, White Flag #8, 2015; Gibson, Someone Great is Gone, 2013
Bronson, White Flag #8, 2015; Gibson, Someone Great is Gone, 2013
Bolf, Classroom, 2009
Bolf, Classroom, 2009

Writing the Walls started 15 years ago when Artistic Director Mara Mills, Studio Theater in Exile, Livia Straus, co-founder Hudson Valley MOCA, and Jo-Ann Brody, HVMOCA staff, decided to enhance the museum exhibitions by inviting poets and playwrights to contribute original works reflective of their interaction with the art.

Accepted poems are hung next to the artwork that inspired the written word, visitors to the museum having a chance to see the dialogue between art and word.

Usually there has been a culminating performance, a day at HVMOCA where, moving from artwork to artwork, the poets read their works in front of their particular chosen work of art as the audience walks from piece to piece, gaining new insight, energizing the space.

This past year the live performance did not happen. With the pandemic at its height, we took to the waves, posting the 2020 poetry catalogue on-line and offering audio/visuals of the poets reading their works relating to the 2020 exhibition How We Live. The ability to hear the poems in the poets’ own voices as often as one would like, the art works as their backdrops, has been a positive result of adapting to the requirements of CoVID.

With pandemic strictures still in place, we are launching Writing Off the Walls, an on-line Visual Art and Word event, offering writers a chance to interact with the art works in How We Live: Part II. While the initial exhibition featured sculpture and video, two-dimensional works have been added, works that speak to challenges we daily face. Writers are to focus on the works new to the exhibition, though dialogue can reference the original sculptures and videos as well.

Projects Supported by:

The Alliance of Resident Theatres/New York
ARTSW LOGO