The concept of turning an old unused detention facility into a vibrant center for artists and art lovers is being set into motion at the recently opened Lorton Workhouse Art Center. Even though it is a rather isolated place, there is lots of art to see and lots of artist studios to visit. The facility itself boasts a state-of-the-art gallery space. This is where I come into the picture (excuse the pun). Curator Marti Kirkpatrick and her husband are presenting an exhibition called Poetic Art in honor of their poet son who died in Iraq. The exhibition is about the seamless marriage between two compatible disciplines – poetry and art, and how they inspire each other. Two of my burnt porcelain book-based works from the exhibition Living Without Them will be paired with Saul Sosnowski’s poetry, which was inspired by the pieces. He will be in good company – among the poets represented is Rita Dove, Pulitzer Prize winner for poetry. The opening reception will be held on Sunday October 25th from 2-5pm. I think it will be worth a trip to Lorton.
In the course of the day, my cat Kiki unfortunately caught a bird and proceded to do away with the poor creature right under my dining room table. Of course I felt badly for the bird, but could not help pulling out one of my burnt porcelain books incribed with a phrase from a Baghdad resident sadly summing up the desperate situation in Baghdad two years ago :”Only birds can go where they like these days.” I placed my dead feathered friend gently in the fold of the gold-leafed porcelain page, and the tableau seemed so tragic, as if to say “No, not even the birds can go where they like…”