Migrations Land of Gazillion Adoptees and Poetry for Thought Saturday, Feburary 22, 2014 An exciting line-up of Twin Cities poets, novelists, nonfiction writers, performance artists, and a pottery maker will come together and share work around the theme of Migration. Each artist will read a fellow artist’s work, creating a dialogue between shared experiences, hopes, dreams, and struggles. In this age of unprecedented movement, what does it mean to leave one’s home or land? Does the word “home” still hold meaning? What is lost in the journey, and what is discovered? Featuring Lisa Brimmer, Chava Gabrielle, Shannon Gibney, IBé, Satish Jayaraj, Hei Kyong Kim, Marc LeMaire, Eva Song Margolis, Sun Yung Shin, Eric Sharp, Chaun Webster***
Gazillion Voices, the online magazine of Land of Gazillion Adoptees (LGA), is a platform for adoptees and their allies to bring topics important to the adoption community to life through rich, compelling, and thought-provoking content.
Poetry for Thought is a Twin Cities organization committed to the arts, social justice, leadership, and community organizing. Through performances, workshops, and dialogue sessions, Poetry for Thought provides a safe space for unsafe ideas where we can create & discuss art, our lives, what we want our community to look like, and how we can work social justice in our communities.
***Lisa Brimmer is a poet, playwright and community organizer. Her work has been published in Ishmael Reed's Konch Magazine and the Summit Avenue Revue. She has been a two time guest artist for Pillsbury House Theater's Late Nite Series, a two time Givens Foundation for African American Literature Fellow and has received a Many Voices Fellowship for playwrighting from the Playwright's Center. Her band High Society has been featured on MPR and KFAI and has a 3rd Tuesday gig at the Blackdog Cafe and Wine Bar in St. Paul.
***Chava Gabrielle is a literary & performance artist, emphasizing in Theatre & Poetry. She is 18 & lives in the Twin Cities of Minnesota. She indulges in the idea of equity and justice especially for women of color. Chava dreams intensely (with action) that equity for all will be more prevalent in our time, but is also all too aware of the fact that this work will never be finished. When on stage, Chava takes the place of introvert in voice, metaphysically building from the inside out. She believes in visuals and takes page poetry to a physical preach while soap boxing the words into public. With a life emphasis on caffeinated beverages, community, & other people’s winter sweaters, she hopes to bring all injustice to light one cup of coffee, one poem, & one conversation at a time.
***Shannon Gibney is a writer, teacher, and activist in Minneapolis. Her critical and creative work regularly appear in a variety of venues. Check out HANK AARON'S DAUGHTER, her Young Adult novel, on gazillionvoices.com.
***IBé was born in Kankan, Guinea; grew up between Koindu (Sierra Leone), Evanston (Illinois) and St. Cloud (Minnesota). Naturally, he lives in “The Middle of the Atlantic”…with a mailing address in Minneapolis, MN. IBé is the recipient of a 2010 Midwestern Voices Award, a 2009 Urban Griots' Cultural Award, a 2005 Jerome/SASE Verve Grant, and a 2004 Minnesota Academy Award nominee for Best Spoken Word. IBé writes that which he sometimes finds hard to say. Spoken word helps him say it. He is the author of “Bridge AcrossAtlantic”, a collection of poems about life between Africa and America.
***Satish Jayaraj is a fantasy novelist, cnf writer, and occasional poet. He has been a perpetual indian immigrant for most of his life which has influenced his writing. He has an mfa from hamline university. Visit his webpage satishjayaraj.weebly.com to see his publications and passions.
***Hei Kyong Kim was adopted from Seoul, South Korea in 1975. By day she’s a psychologist, and by night she writes poetry and prose. Her work can be found in numerous journals and anthologies, including Parenting As Adoptees, Outsiders Within, Seeds from a Silent Tree, Paj Ntaub Voice, Journal of the Asian American Renaissance, New Truths: Writing in the 21st Century by Koreans, and Adoption Today.
***Marc LeMaire began his work with the craft of clay in 2003. He graduated from Houghton College in 2011 with a degree in Art and concentrations in Ceramics and Painting. In 2011 he traveled to Tanzania where he established a potters studio that is functioning today. He has currently relocated to Minneapolis, Minnesota where he intends to continue work in clay. Marc’s work balances between the spheres of functional necessities and contemplative non-functional works. He hopes to bring a reflection of both himself, but more importantly the society surrounding; these objects tell a story of our social, personal, and natural interactions. He explores the beauty and value of handcrafted objects as a celebration of the everyday life.
***Eva Song Margolis My identity has been largely shaped by my adopted Korean American experience. From a young age I have been hungry to test boundaries and explore multiple understandings of identity, culture and citizenship. I love writing and its ability to transform, heal, unite, and question.
***Eric Sharp is an actor, playwright, and teaching artist based in Minneapolis. He has been seen on stage at Mu Performing Arts, The Guthrie Theater, Theatre de la Jeune Lune and Park Square Theatre among others. Eric currently serves as Marketing Coordinator at Mu Performing Arts and teaches theatre workshops and residencies across the Twin Cities. His play Middle Brother is currently in development through Mu Performing Arts.
***Sun Yung Shin is the author of two books of poetry: Rough, and Savage and Skirt Full of Black, winner of the Asian American Literary Award for Poetry—both published by Coffee House Press. She co-edited the anthology Outsiders Within: Writing on Transracial Adoption with Jane Jeong Trenka and Julia Chinyere Sudbury, and authored Cooper's Lesson, a bilingual (Korean/English) children’s book. Recent work can be found in or is forthcoming in the final volume of The Encyclopedia Project, the anthology And Others Will Enter the Gates from Black Lawrence Press, the anthology Poetry to the People from This Land Press, in the Korean art exhibit hall at the Minneapolis Institute of Arts, and elsewhere.
***Chaun Webster is a poet, publisher and graphic designer working at the intersections of the Black Arts Movement and Jazz, Concrete Poetry and Graffiti. Webster’s poetry and general art practice investigate the assumptions of legitimacy in knowledge production, and the psychic terror employed by media in order to maintain power relationships. In praise of Webster’s latest book Because When We Say NAT It Be Writ Large, National Poetry Award winner Douglas Kearney says “Webster’s words run off into the bush, not to flee but to ambush, not to hide but to shake every tree.” In 2009 Webster founded Free Poet’s Press, a small publishing entity in the tradition of Broadside Press and with the mission of Black and Brown communities recognizing their inherent right to create and own what they’ve created. You can learn more about Webster and Free Poet’s Press at www.freepoetspress.com.