Tag Archives: Visible Verse

Visible Verse Festival 2013 programme!

from "Something" by Keith Sargeant

Whew! Alright, announcing the 2013 Visible Verse Festival programme! As with last year, we recieved a record number of entries, over 200. The little festival that could keeps growing and like we always say, we’re proud to remain the sustaining venue in North America for artistically significant videopoetry and film. This year will be our 14th!

We received stellar works from South Africa, Thailand, Germany, Belgium, Portugal, Canada, the U.S, Ireland and the UK. With only one night of screenings, I am unable to include a lot of video poems I like.

Fortunately the program does include Literary Movement, a discussion with R.W. Perkins on the process of creating videopoems and the integration of modern filmmaking techniques, Q&A to follow. We will be screening his videopems Morning Sex & Blueberry Pancakes and Small Talk & Little Else. R.W. Perkins is a poet and filmmaker from Fort Collins, Colorado. His work has been published in the Atticus ReviewMoving PoemsThe Denver EgotistThe Connotation Press, and The Huffington Post Denver. Perkins’s work has been featured at film festivals all over the world, including an 18-state U.S. tour with the New Belgium Brewery’s Clips of Faith Beer & Film Tour in 2012 and at the ZEBRA Poetry Film Festival in Berlin, Germany. Perkins is also the creator and director of The Body Electric Poetry Film Festival, Colorado’s first poetry film festival, which held its inaugural event in May of this year. For more information on Perkins and his work, visit www.rw-perkins.com. We’re thrilled to have him!

The festival is Sat, Oct. 12 at the Cinematheque in Vancouver. My son has promised to edit a trailer for me, I’ll post it asap. *See* you there!

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Underground No One Famous/Blair Dykes Vancouver, BC 2011

Language of Desire Kathryn MacLean Edmonton, AB 2013

When Walt Whitman Was a Little Girl Jim Haverkamp Durham, NC 2012

Lapis and Centaurs Frank Müller Hamburg, Germany 2013

Something Keith Sargeant/Charles Bukowski poem London, UK 2012

Day Is Done Swoon Bildos Mechelen, Belgium 2012

Textual Assault Placards Wally Keeler Cobourg, ON 2012

Last Words of the Condemned Diane Arterian Los Angeles, CA 2013

’1-poem-6′ Pablo López Jordan/Vangelis Skouras    London, UK & Murcia, Spain

Like So Alan David Pritchard   Isle of Wight, UK 2011

I thought I was more memorable James O Leary   Cork, Ireland 2013

Camel Matt Robertson Vancouver, BC 2013

Suburban Sylph of Crying Owls Gavin Jones North Yorkshire, UK 2013

PDA Kal Estrel   Kingston, UK 2012

Onion of Love Kirk Ramdath   Calgary, AB

Covered In Grass Aaron Samuels    Cranston, Rhode Island

expect something and nothing at once Michelle Elrick   Winnipeg, MN

Morning Sex & Blueberry Pancakes R.W. Perkins   Fort Collins, Colorado

INTERMISSION

On Meeting A Fox Janette Ayachi Edinburgh, Scotland

Full English Christopher Stewart Middlesbrough, UK

Not Death but Love: Tracing the Heart of Elizabeth Barrett Browning Gerard Wozek/Mary Russell
Chicago, IL

With Only My Hands Sergej Bezuglov/ Zakaryia Amatoya/Cece Nobre Bangkok, Thailand

Crow Morphologies Tara Flyn/Daniela Elza/Soressa Gardner Vancouver, BC 2013

Through The Eyes of the Wind Adam Jacobs/Forrest Casey Golden Valley, MN 2012

Futures of the Past Ray Hsu/Michael Parks/Chloe Chan Vancouver, BC 2013

To This Day Shane Koyzan Pentiction, BC 2013

Requiem for Lithium Jason Staggie Capetown, South Africa 2012

Small Talk & Little Else R.W. Perkins Fort Collins, Colorado 2013

Thief Behind The Mask CR Avery Vancouver, BC 2013

Love Gang Tara Evonne Trudell Las Vegas, NM

The Poet Is Artificially Removed Jordan Abel Vancouver, BC

I Love The Internet Kevin Barrington Dublin, Ireland

Rhythm of Structure John Sims New York, NY

Appraisal Melissa Diem Dublin, Ireland 2013

From Within Alexandre Braga Lisbon, Portugal 2013

Orange Taien Ng-Chan Montreal, QC 2005

Innisfree Don Carey (based on the WB Yeats poem) Dublin, Ireland 2013

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Remembering Riflemen Whilst Bushwhacking

Good trick, eh? 11 • 11• 11. Felt like any other, though good news arrived to brighten the short, dark, cold November days. My videopoem Bushwhack is an official selection of the International Literary Film Festival, Director Lee Bob Black, “excited to be screening it along with many other brilliant films.”

I still have not had an opportunity to write an account of our recent Visible Verse Festival, swamped with novel queries, hustling, but did take time to honour our war dead on Rememberance Day. My maternal grandfather Rifleman Reginald Haley of Matapédia, Quebec was a member of the Royal Rifles taken prisoner by the Japanese Christmas Eve 1941, dying of dysentery a few awful years later. My friend author Dennis E. Bolen said it was a damn shame how the outfit had been abandoned by Churchill, tortured for years by the Imperial Japanese. Though we both have many dear Japanese friends, agree that their government’s refusal to apologize is deplorable. He recommended a book on the subject, War Without Mercy, which “attempts to explain the racism wherein the Japs considered North American Caucasians to be effete and we considered Asians to be sub-human. Bad combination.”Indeed. I recently read Michael Crummy’s The Wreckage, which vividly depicted the brutality of a Japanese POW camp and some people, usually Americans, claim that the Kamikaze ideology is what got them nuked. And there’s my hapless big Mick grandfather Reggie caught in the crossfire. Sadly the soldiers that survived received no hero’s welcome either. I regret never having had the privilege of knowing him, sounds like we would have got on. Hell, my mother could barely remember him, only eight years old when he died, leaving her, my grandmother Genora and four brothers and sisters bereft and impoverished. I can honestly say the tremendous loss of my grandfather has impacted our family to this day.

Rest in peace Reginald.

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Post fest!

And boy, are my brains tired! Recovering from Visible Verse Festival 2011, will return soon with an account. All reports so far state this was the best program yet. We did receive twice as many submissions so the (visible) word is slowly getting out, which benefits both artists and audiences.

In the meantime, check out my latest videopoem, Where Sins Are More Sinful, if you like, a serendipitous collaboration with the remarkable Belgian media artist Swoon Bildos, AKA Marc Neys, who submitted a swack of works. We selected four; On Edward Hopper’s Automat, What do animals dream?, Stockholm Syndrome and Sleepdancing (Giddoo). You can check also out the Moving Poems site while you’re there. Dave Bonta is a big booster of the genre and the festival. “Moving Poems is an on-going anthology of the best poetry videos from around the web, appearing at a rate of one every weekday most weeks.”

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Visible Verse Festival 2011 • Art or Entertainment; do I really have to choose?

Well, you can’t please them all. I’ve heard the festival criticized for being arty, while others complain its emphasis is entertainment. My challenge of course is to showcase works from the vanguard while drawing people in; people, as in audience. Populist by nature, I don’t view myself as an arbiter. I’m a exhibitor, and while discerning, feel strongly it’s vital to be democratic, as inclusive as possible, which is not to say my criteria are not exacting. Neither are they elitist. I seek innovation, my main criterion artistic merit.

Videopoetry or poetry video. Film or video? And then there is cinema to consider. I find semantics tedious. My reaction to the insistence there be a formal definition of the genre, is, why? Don’t we have enough divides? We live in the age of the mashup. Isn’t that merging? Fusion? Transformation? In any case, I have faith in the poet’s ability to render his or her poem. It would be awfully tedious if everyone made videopoems according to a formula. Via video or film, a poet will explore, push the boundaries of image, language and sound. Whether it’s illustrative or conceptual, I trust the poet to make choices, to create a work according to his individual style and sensibilities. Vision. While I can’t abide cliché or literal translations, surely there’s room for both narrative and non-narrative treatments. One man’s execution is another man’s experiment. One man’s amusement is another man’s pith.

As an artist, I don’t make a huge distinction between film and video, think more in terms of moving images. I do favor the term videopoem because fusion of verse and medium is my goal, and video is accessible and affordable, vital considerations for this poet. Also, video lends itself to hybridization, its history of experimentation a fundamental aspect of the medium. At last year’s festival, our tenth, a panel discussion called Seeing the Voice: the Evolution of Videopoetry from Cocteau to YouTube, became bogged down at one point in definition. “What is a videopoem?” I know one when I see one. Always. And they’re rare. In 1999, as one of the founders of the Vancouver Videopoem Festival, I ventured, it’s is a wedding of word and image. For me, voice is the critical element, beyond text, medium. But that’s just me. My aesthetic choice.

I hope you will come to see, hear and decide for yourself. This year my Pacific Cinémathèque colleagues and I proudly present two days of poetry On Screen and On Stage. Friday, Nov 4, the night’s program is a wild ride of more than 35 short films and videos from Canada, the U.S., Europe, and Asia

Saturday, Nov 5, 4 pm,  we facilitate an Artist Talk with visionary videopoet Tom Konyves, who has just penned Videopoety: A Manifesto and will have signed hard copies available. Immediately following I am happy to host a Visiting Poets reading with Alexander Jorgensen from Pennsylvania and Rich Ferguson from California. Other artists in attendance at the festival this year include Kath MacLean, Britt Hobart, Joe Boyce Burgess, Dennis E. Bolen and Michael Rouse. Find details here, and here is this year’s program. Continue reading

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This dream, this precious life

Stormy weather and animal dreams. I was in a slaughterhouse, looking at a hole in the wall. A mouse hole? A hand reached out to stroke the snout of a hippo. To soothe it? Are they related to swine or do they just look like they are? Then many hands emerged from the hole, not exactly waving. Next night, with a guinea pig on my shoulder, I watched as a woman in a window frolicked with four little lap dogs, all different breeds, housed within a kind of four-plex cage. So I don’t know what’s up with that but perhaps such bizarreness was triggered by news of an incident in North Carolina, a sheriffs’ department using stray dogs for target practice, which made me think of the sled dogs that were euthanized in Whistler post-Olympics, after they lost their usefulness. Ah, human cruelty knows no bounds. We treat each other like garbage too.

Word on the Street Festival endured more weather challenges than usual, tents on Hamilton Street blown down by high winds. I was astounded, thought they’d cancelled or something. That would be a first. Then we endured a colossal downpour. An hour later, rainbows and sunshine, me cursing. I always travel with sunglasses and an umbrella but that morning couldn’t imagine the sun emerging. I should know better after all these years of Vancouver weather. Highlights, Elizabeth Bachinksy’s Event Magazine writers/readers Wayde ComptonCharles Demers and Amber Dawn. They’re celebrating 40 years, as is Talonbooks. As usual I ran into many fellow maniacs, happy to see the majority. (Some) people will treat you like garbage, if you let them. One perk of maturity; I know life is precious. Ditto time.

And we are not dogs. Dinner with precious friends. Does wine tastes better in a restaurant or is it just me I asked? Laughter. It’s just you Heather. True enough. It’s just me.

Recovering from an intense weekend of Visible Verse Festival programming. Whew! It really has grown, this festival and I was forced to make some very tough decisions. There were more than a few submissions in the Maybe pile that I wanted to screen but ran out of time. I announced the program Monday, making quite a few artists very happy in the process. Guess it’s all worth it.

I’m posting the essay I wrote for Sheri-D’s Spoken Word Workbook earlier this year. She’ll be in town to perform at the Vancouver International Writers Festival next month and will facilitate a master class in spoken word as well. I’ve been asked how collaborating in music and video affects my practice, thought this answered the question:

S I D E W A Y S

By Any Medium Necessary

Subversive, sub rosasidewayslike a snake in the grass is often how an artist must move and technology can help us cover more ground. I address social issues in my work but I dread dogma as much as cliché. I believe that being an artist is a political statement.

Though founder of the Edgewise ElectroLit Centre, I am not a technocrat. I felt strongly it was Continue reading

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(G)literati and Fighting the Good Fight

Author Kevin Chong

Where’s the poem? Swamped this week screening submissions for Visible Verse Festival 2011 and up to my eyeballs in experimental film, which happens every year. Without being semantical, I have to say poetic is not the same as visible verse, or a video poem or a cine-poem, or whichever term you prefer. I think I just got semantical.

Still laughing and sharing photos from Kevin Chong’s book launch of new novel Beauty and Pity at Vancouver’s infamous Penthouse nightclub, the first and likely the last time I’ll ever set my ass down in there. I was surprised; the interior does not reflect the fading building facade. Neither did the carpet reek of stale beer, wall of framed 8×10 black and white celebrity headshots only one of its charms. Anyway, I’ve spent enough time in strip clubs. Bartending was the only job I could find in New York City when I resided, or rather survived a year there in the 80s. Man, it was a tough town, nothing like it is now, inhabitable. A friend of a friend got me a job at the Baby Doll, a topless bar on White Street, just down from the Mudd Club, where we used to convene after our shifts ended at 2 AM, or at the sushi bar imbibing hot sake, which goes down well in the company of bitterly cold Manhattanites. Club management kept trying to get me to strip too. I was quite miserable after my band broke up and told them, “No thanks, I don’t miss the stage that much.” I only had to watch the dancers—what was left of them—flaunt it, appalled by the Wall Street fat cat CEOs and bankers turned on by such pathetic junkies. No way I was going to wind up down there.

But back to Vancouver. I love book launches that are beyond readings. Kevin commissioned a book trailer, directed and produced by mutual friends Pam Bentley and Tara Flynn and it was hilarious. The book jacket states “Malcolm Kwan is a slacker twenty-something Asian-Canadian who is about to embark on a modeling career.” Kevin had Owen Kwong, a real male model, portray him. Later during the reading, host Charles Demers applied makeup to Kevin’s face, and not expertly, bestowing him with a magnificent unibrow. Kevin admirably kept reciting throughout the lipstick and purple wig application. What an event! And so glamorous. I’m enjoying the book immensely, can recommend it.

Attended a Continue reading

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Announcing the SEE THE VOICE @ Vancouver International Poetry Festival program!

Mostly chronological, from 1999-2010. The order might change a bit, but probably not.

SEE THE VOICE @ VANCOUVER INTERNATIONAL POETRY FESTIVAL

Bubblegum Alley                        Zaffi Gousopoulos

That Which Takes Flight Laurel Ann Bogen/Doug Knott

Airplane Paula Sheri-D Wilson

Chinese Cucumbers Patricia Smith/Kurt Heintz

Alphabet City Adeenda Karasick

Sturgeon Song Alice Tepexquintle

Hundred Block Rock Bud Osborn/Dave Lester

Hopscotch Tom Konyves

Sista Someone Seth Adrian Harris

Kingsway Michael Turner

Cocteau Cento Dan Boord/Luis Vadlovino

Memory Block Hari Alluri

Lost In The Library George Bowering

Almost Forgot my Bones Tanya Evanson/Katrin Bowen

Spinsters Hanging In Trees Sheri-D Wilson

Missed Aches Joanna Priestley/Taylor Mali

Enter the Chrysanthemum Fiona Lam

Car Wash Leanne Averbach

What Did You Do Boy? Janet Rogers

Vita Means Life Gabrielle Everall

Psychic Defense Training

for Ex-Lovers Doug Knott

To Erzulie Lennelle M. Moise/Mara Alper

Buffalo Roaming Kirk Miles

Candle Dance,

The Crossroads David Bengtson/Mike Hazard

Intersecting Circles Moe Clark

Financially Strapped Katrin Bowen

Purple Lipstick Heather Haley/Alexandra Oliver

Being An Artist Ellyn Maybe

Turtleheart Susan Cormier

The Bather David Bateman

Dirty Bomb Mac Dunlop

Beware Of Dog Tom Konyves

Cellophane Girl Alain Delannoy/Pamela Mansbridge

The Knotting of Rope,The Mechanics of Plastic,

The Right To Remain Francesco Levato

Deersigns Taien Ng-Chan

The Book Of Green Gerard Wozek/Mary Russell

How To Remain AURAL Heather

Retro disk chunter Stuart Pound

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2011 VISIBLE VERSE FESTIVAL Call for Entries and Official Guidelines

* Visible Verse Festival seeks videopoems, with a 15 minutes maximum duration.
* Either official language of Canada is acceptable, though if the video is in French, an English-dubbed or-subtitled version is required for consideration. Videos may originate in any part of the world.
* Works will be judged by their innovation, cohesion and literary merit. The ideal videopoem is a wedding of word and image, the voice seen as well as heard.
* Please, do not send documentaries as they are outside the featured genre.
* Videopoem producers should provide a brief bio, full name, and contact information in a cover letter. There is no official application form nor entry fee.

DEADLINE: Sept. 1, 2011

Send, at your own risk, videopoems and poetry films/preview copies (which cannot be returned) in DVD NTSC format to: VISIBLE VERSE c/o Pacific Cinémathèque, 200-1131 Howe Street, Vancouver, BC, V6Z 2L7, Canada. Selected artists will be notified and receive a standard screening fee.

For more information contact host and curator Heather Haley at hshaley@emspace.com or visit my Visible Verse page. 

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“POET CELEBRATES VERSE ON FILM”

That would be me. And finally I’ve got my life back! I am once again able to tutor my son, cook dinner, clean house, catch up on paperwork, email correspondence, walk in the woods with the dogs and write. Woo hoo! I can’t believe how time consuming, all consuming this Visible Verse Festival became. Josef kept saying I was doing too much, that I needed more help, which didn’t seem too helpful. Certainly it’s true but who else could I enlist? So I bit the bullet. I can do this. Once every 10 years, it won’t kill me. The festival turned out well though. I received many kudos and people were especially impressed with the programming.

According to the Visible Verse article and Georgia Straight film critic Mark Harris I have an “unusual vocation.” That’s one way to put it, perhaps a polite way. Oh, I’m not complaining. I’m just relieved to climb back to into the scribe saddle. I’m going to finish up this blog entry and then attend to an essay Sheri-D Wilson has contracted me to write for a reference book and her Banff Arts Centre workshop. Then, I can finally get back to my novel! It will be a miracle if I complete the final draft by Jan 1 but I’m going to try.

As I sit here lamely trying to recall the events of the festival less than two weeks ago, it occurs to me that it ‘s much like the pain of childbirth, a big blur of panic and pain. Actually, I’ve never had to Continue reading

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From your incurable optimist, dare I say, utopian?

Sadly, my dear friend Ann Haskell died Oct. 22 after a two-year battle with ovarian cancer. Assimilation of such facts of life is difficult without the means to attend the memorial. She was my ex-mother-in-law though I remained a great admirer and missed her terribly-almost as much as her youngest son Peter-after we split up. As a young woman I was in awe of her. Quietly strong, kind, intelligent, beautiful, a scholar, single mother and professor of literature at SUNY-Buffalo when we met, Ann and I thankfully reconnected and started corresponding a few years back, along with middle son Mark and her daughter—my surrogate little sister—Gretl, who reassured me, “Mom knew you were thinking of her.” Mark let all her loved ones know Ann died as she wanted, peacefully, surrounded by her beloved family and felines, no doubt with characteristic grace and dignity. Here is part of her obituary. As I told Gretl, I don’t possess words enough to describe her accomplishments.

Ann S. Haskell Obituary – 1/7/29 – 10/22/10     Ann was born in Washington, DC, in 1929 and grew up in Arlington, VA. While raising three children on her own, she was among the first women to graduate from Clemson University and was awarded a Woodrow Wilson Graduate Fellowship. She received her Doctorate with honors from the University of Pennsylvania in 1964. She went on to teach at the English Department of the State University of New York at Buffalo, specializing in Chaucer and Medieval Life and Literature and in Children’s Literature, for thirty-seven years. She was a mentor and advisor to hundreds of students whose lives and careers she enriched with her generosity and scholarship. Her many academic publications include the books, “Essays on Chaucer’s Saints” and  “A Middle English Anthology,” which has been in print since 1969. Ann wrote Op-Ed columns, personal essays, and articles on food and numerous other subjects for publications such as the Smithsonian, the Washington Post, Baltimore Sun and New York Times. She maintained a home in Provence in Southern France for forty years and she and her husband taught a program abroad on the Culture of Provence.

*sigh* Sure do hope I get to see Gretl and Mark again soon.

So, back to the grind . . . I’ve been trying to recall a time when I didn’t have a laptop handy 24 hours a day. How did I survive? Still in the throes of Visible Verse festival programming, production and promotion, literary scene pal Rob Taylor kindly blogging about it at Spread It Like a Roll of Nickels. I will be presenting a couple of videopoems–a preview–at Sean Cranbury’s Real Vancouver Writers Series, Nov. 17. I bought a Continue reading

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