Tuesday, March 27, 2012

VCCA: A Heartfelt Thank You

One of the joys of being at an artists’ colony is meeting and being inspired by other working artists in a variety of fields.  This list could be much longer—and I could write pages about how amazing each of these people is and the impact they had on me and my work while I was at VCCA—but I’ll keep it brief, and urge you to check out their art: 

Deborah A. Rockman is a visual artist, juxtaposing drawn images overlaid on photographs, with unsettling and unforgettable results.  You can view her portfolios at her website.  I cannot resist adding as a personal note that she is the world’s biggest advocate for the great state of Michigan!

Christopher Preissing is a composer and sound artist who created a wonderful installation in a repurposed silo on the grounds of VCCA; he combined words from a music theory text with sounds recorded while in residence—frogs, trains, the bees outside my studio.  Listening in the dark room as sounds ricocheted above us, I felt as though I’d not been paying close enough attention to the rich reverberations of the world around us.  You can listen to his work on his website.

Amy Hoffman is a memorist, at work on her first novel.  Her new book will be coming out next spring.  Lies About My Family is about the stories tell about themselves over and over, what’s underneath them, what’s missing from them.  You can listen to her read a chapter of her book at her website.

Coleman Hough is a filmmaker who is at work on a memoir.  Among other projects, she has written two movies, Full Frontal and Bubbles, both directed by Stephen Soderbergh—soon to be at the top of my Netflix queue.  You can see a trailer for Full Frontal  here.

Michelle Boisseau is a poet, author of five books:

Childhood is a nicked black trunk
you move when you move, from attics
to basements, storage shed, crawl space,
walk-in closet….

Read the rest of this powerful poem at her website.

The creative life is—for me—the only life worth living, but it can be lonely at times, and discouraging.  It’s sometimes difficult to keep up one’s spirits...until you meet those others who are making their way along the same path.  Thank you to VCCA for creating such an incredible environment for artists of all types and at varying points in their careers, and thank you to these artists and the many I’ve met who help ease the loneliness and lift the spirits—and just plain know how to have a rocking good time!

P.S.  If you’d like to come to VCCA and experience its magic yourself, the next application deadline is May 15.  Details at the website:  www.vcca.com.


DC-area author Leslie Pietrzyk explores the creative process and all things literary.