Apply to Participate in the 2019-20 Religion, Spirituality & the Arts Seminar

The Religion, Spirituality, and the Arts Program (RSA) is a program of the IUPUI Arts and Humanities Institute that brings together artists, religious leaders, religious communities, humanities experts, and a broad range of publics from diverse backgrounds and disciplinary perspectives for sustained study, analysis, and discussion of religious texts in a classroom environment. Directed by Rabbi Sandy Sasso, these textual discussions, which explore the varieties of religious experience and understanding, provide the inspiration for creating new artistic works (e.g. music, poetry, fiction, drama, visual art, dance). Artists share their creations through exhibitions and presentations to members of the Central Indiana community, including religious organizations, congregations, schools, libraries, and community groups.

2019-20 Theme

We will explore the story of Jonah in the Bible and the Quran and consider a variety of themes including the arbitrariness of unwarranted compassion and the desire to escape calls to human responsibility. When others cry out, Jonah runs away or sleeps. Might we see contemporary responses to crises through Jonah’s actions? What about the human desire to flee distasteful obligations? Through visual arts, poetry, and music we will explore the symbolism of the big fish as “reassuring womb” or “terrifying tomb” and the strange prophet who hates change but nevertheless brings it about in the end.

Faculty

The faculty list for the 2018-19 seminar is still growing. So far, the faculty include

  • Anila Quayyum Agha, Associate Professor of Drawing and Illustration in the Herron School of Art and Design at IUPUI

  • Julia Muney Moore, Director of Public Art for the Arts Council of Indianapolis

  • Sandy Sasso, Rabbi Emerita of Congregation Beth-El Zedeck

  • Steven Stolen Host of WFYI’s Stolen Moments

  • Shari Wagner, Author and Indiana Poet Laureate (2016-2017)

  • Joseph Tucker Edmonds, Assistant Professor of Africana Studies and Religious Studies at IUPUI

Meetings

Sessions will be held for 2 1/2 hours weekly for a total of eight weeks and will meet evenings from 6:00–8:30 p.m. on 9/19, 9/26, 10/3, 10/10, 11/7, 12/12, 1/9 or 1/16, 2/6

How to Apply

Applications for this seminar will be accepted from April 29 to May 28, 2019.

Applicants may be anyone in the community who is active (as a professional or amateur) in the artistic disciplines. Selected applicants must be able to make a commitment to attend all seminar sessions and engage in open and respectful dialogue. Seminar participants will produce creative work to be performed and/or exhibited in a public forum. Seminar participants will receive a $150 stipend at the conclusion of the group exhibition.

Application Form

To apply to be an artist-participant in the current seminar, please submit your application using the online form.

In addition to basic demographic information, the form asks you to answer the following questions:

      • How do you see your art form interacting with a religious text?

      • How do you imagine this experience will impact your creative work?

You will also need to upload

      • An artist resume

      • Three examples of your work

For more information, please visit our website! 

Poetry, Music, & Mind

What are the effects of poetry and music on the mind and the body? Where do art and medicine meet? Join us for a conversation with Adrian Matejka, Nate Marshall, and Eileen Misluk about Poetry, Music & Mind.

Adrian Matejka is a National Book Award and Pulitzer Prize-nominated poet who teaches at Indiana University Bloomington and is Poet Laureate of Indiana. His most recent book is Map to the Stars (Penguin, 2017).

Nate Marshall is the author of Wild Hundreds (University of Pittsburgh, 2015) and co-editor of The BreakBeat Poets: New American Poetry in the Age of Hip-Hop (Haymarket, 2015). He was the star of the award winning full-length documentary Louder Than a Bomb and has been featured on the HBO original series Brave New Voices. He lives on the South Side of Chicago.

Eileen Misluk is Director of Art Therapy and Assistant Clinical Professor at Herron School of Art + Design, IUPUI. She is a registered and board certified art therapist, licensed professional counselor, and licensed mental health counselor.

This event is part of the IUPUI Arts & Humanities Institute’s Entanglements Series which puts scientists, social scientists, humanists, and artists in conversation with the audience to ask questions that transcend disciplinary boundaries.

Poetry, Music, & Mind is co-presented with the Department of English at IUPUI and the Reiberg Reading Series at IUPUI. Support for this event comes from the Indiana University New Frontiers in the Arts and Humanitiesgrant program.

RSVP NOW! 

Religion, Spirituality and the Arts Presents Eighth Annual Exhibition: Exploring the Story of Lot’s Wife

The Religion, Spirituality & the Arts Seminar (RSA), a project of the IUPUI Arts & Humanities Institute, invited 12 Indiana artists to explore and expound upon the story of Lot’s Wife during the eighth annual Religion, Spirituality and the Arts Seminar and the accompanying art exhibition. Artists include Stan Blevins, Peggy Breidenbach, Alys Caviness-Gober, Marjie Giffin, A. Paul Johnson, Kasey May, Michael McAuley, William Peacock, Katherine
Simmons, Jennifer Strange, Teresa Vazquez, and Kevin Wilson.

In this exhibition, the artists consider questions that delve far beyond the story Lot’s Wife who, as told in Genesis 19, turns to see the destruction of Sodom and Gomorrah and becomes a pillar of salt. Did she act in disobedience or out of compassion? What is our responsibility to bear witness? Is looking back redemptive or paralyzing? Might we see contemporary events (mass tragedies, refugees) in the light of this text? Exploring the story through
religion, art, poetry, and music, this exhibition will ask questions fundamental to the human experience

Directed by Rabbi Sandy Sasso, the RSA Seminar explores the varieties of religious experience and understanding. Through seminars led by an interdisciplinary faculty, artists gain the knowledge and inspiration to develop new artistic works. Artists share their creations through exhibitions and presentations to members of the Central Indiana community, including religious organizations, schools, libraries, and community groups.

On March 7, 2019, the first public exhibition of the 2018-19 RSA Seminar’s work will open featuring new works of painting, sculpture, music, and poetry developed by the cohort. A reception begins at 5:30 p.m. with performances beginning at 6:30 p.m. The exhibition will remain on display at the Jewish Community Center of Indianapolis through April 30.

This opening event and exhibition is free and open to the public at the Jewish Community Center of Indianapolis (6701 Hoover Road, Indianapolis, IN 46260). Refreshments will also be served at the March 7 reception.

Thursday, March 7, 2019
Reception begins at 5:30 PM; performance begins at 6:30 PM
We’ll see you there!

The 2018-19 Religion, Spirituality & the Arts Seminar programming is made possible by a generous grant from Lilly Endowment, Inc. and is offered in partnership with Christian Theological Seminary and the Jewish Community
Center of Indianapolis. Additional information about the seminar is available at
https://www.culturalecologies.org/rsa/.

REGISTER NOW!

Catch a Fire! Honoring the Black Arts: An Evening of Spoken Word Poetry and Drumming

Babalawo Awodele Ifasina and Lasana Kazembe

Come and enjoy an evening of spoken word poetry and drumming featuring Babalawo Awodele Ifasina on the drums and Lasana Kazembe doing spoken word poetry.

The IUPUI Africana Studies Program invites one and all to a special evening of creative artistic expression. JOIN US as we honor the Black Arts with an exciting presentation and performance featuring spoken word poetry and live music.

The event will be held at Lilly Auditorium in the university library on the lower level. Wednesday, February 20th at 6pm.

This event is FREE and open to the public!

2018 Symposium Poetry Contest

Frederick Douglass at 200: His Living Words
Deadline: October 15, 2018.

IUPUI’s Frederick Douglass Papers will be hosting a poetry contest for this year’s Frederick Douglass Symposium celebrating the 200th anniversary of the birth of noted abolitionist, Frederick Douglass. Poetry submissions are open to all high school and college level students.

Submissions will be carefully read and evaluated by the staff members of the Frederick Douglass Papers Edition, and the winners will be selected by Dr. John Kaufman-McKivigan and Dr. Jeffery Duvall. The winner of the contest will receive a Barnes & Noble gift card, while the runner ups will receive copies of books on Frederick Douglass.

The top contestants will have the opportunity to read their work aloud at the Frederick Douglass at 200: His Living Words Symposium at the Hine Hall Auditorium in IUPUI’s University Tower Building on Friday, October 26, 2018, between 10:30 and 11:30AM.

Due to the time restrictions of the event, we request that all poems, when read aloud, fall between three and five minutes each. While there are no style or formatting restrictions, all poems must be about Frederick Douglass and his world.

Electronic submissions are encouraged and may be sent to: douglass@iupui.edu

With permission, selected poems may also be presented online at the Frederick Douglass Papers website. We look forward to reading your submissions!

From Humanities: American Poet W. S. Merwin Transformed Anger into Art

W. S. Merwin

W. S. Merwin, who twice won the Pulitzer Prize, first tried his hand at poetry as a child. Growing up in Union City, New Jersey, he was moved to bring pen to paper after hearing his father, a Presbyterian minister, read from the King James Bible at church. Young William realized that there was a “distant connection” between that kind of heightened language and poetry. “And that’s what I wanted to do, to write poetry. And the more I did it, the more I wanted to do it.”

Merwin developed an impersonal formalist style, but in time his poems trended toward a freer and more lyrical approach. His work, steeped in legend, the classics, and the Bible, is also anchored in the present, marked, above all, by a vigilance for all living things. Although he has been an angry poet at times, he has avoided bitterness by learning to transform his rage into art. Transformation is the key to understanding his work, as the hallmark of his poetry since the early sixties has been his mastery of “the turn,” the moment in a poem where an idea turns, often with a surprise, into something else.

His first books of poetry were marked by objectivity, elegance, and formal constraints. He wrote in meter and tried his hand at a variety of poetic forms, including the sestina. One critic observed that his first book, A Mask for Janus (1952), “exhibits a young musician trying out his instrument.” His diction was elaborate, using such terms as “anabasis” (a difficult military retreat), “koré” (an ancient Greek statue of a woman), “saeculum” (an Etruscan word for a specific period of time, usually the length of a generation), and “penates” (household gods in Roman times). To understand the volume’s first two poems, “Anabasis,” parts I and II, it helps to have read Xenophon. History-laden words, as in the poetry of his mentor Ezra Pound, had for Merwin a creative force all their own.

But erudition always vied with living things for Merwin’s attention. Plants, trees, and animals have been of particular interest…

[read more]

Reiberg Reading Series: Amy Quan Barry

Amy Quan Barry FlyerThe IUPUI Arts and Humanities Institute and the IUPUI Department of English present the Reiberg Reading Series featuring Amy Quan Barry

Date: November 5, 2015
Time: 7:30 pm
Location: Lilly Auditorium, IUPUI Library; 755 W. Michigan St.
Click here for free tickets

Amy Quan Barry is the author of the four poetry collections Asylum, Controvertibles, Water Puppets, and most recently Loose Strife. Her poems have appeared in The New Yorker, The Missouri Review, Ploughshares, The Kenyon Review, and other literary publications. She is the recipient of the Agnes Lynch Starrett Prize (for Asylum). Her third book, Water Puppets, won the AWP Donald Hall Prize for Poetry and was a PEN/Open Book finalist. She has received NEA Fellowships in both fiction and poetry. Her novel, She Weeps Each Time You’re Born, tells the tumultuous history of modern Vietnam as experienced by a young girl born under mysterious circumstances a few years before the country’s reunification.

Support for the Reiberg Reading Series comes from the Reiberg family, IU School of Liberal Arts at IUPUI, the IUPUI University Library, the IUPUI Office of Academic Affairs, and IUPUI Division of Undergraduate Education.

Mitchell Douglas’s Sabbatical Lecture Examines a Pivotal Time in Rock History

Mitchell Douglass
Mitchell Douglass

The Rolling Stones concert at Altamont Speedway in December 1969 was marred by an alcohol-fueled security force of Hells Angels and the gang’s murder of a Berkeley teen. This year, Dec. 6, marked the 35th anniversary of the Altamont free concert. While Meredith Hunter’s killer, Hells Angel Alan Passaro, is long gone, Hunter’s story has never been fully explored. Mitchell Douglas, assistant professor of English at IUPUI, will explore the events of that night through lyric and persona poetry. Douglas will present his sabbatical talk December 9, 2014 to discuss his process for creating poems based on historical events, writing persona poems in the voices of historical figures, and how research can be an integral part of a creative project.

About the Liberal Arts Sabbatical Series Lectures

The Sabbatical Speaker Series was established to provide a venue for sharing research completed by Liberal Arts faculty while on sabbatical leaves. It is a sampling of the diverse work and excellence of IUPUI faculty, and an opportunity to come together for an hour of intellectual exploration with students, alumni, faculty, staff, retirees and friends from the community.

About the speaker

Mitchell Douglas is an Associate Professor of Creative Writing and Literature at the IUPUI School of Liberal Arts. His areas of academic interest include the Black Arts Movement, ethnic poetry collectives, and art for social change. He received the Lexi Rudnitsky Editor’s Choice Award and has been a finalist for the NAACP Image Award (Outstanding Literary Work-Poetry), thee Hurston/Wright Legacy Award, the Wick Poetry Prize, the Crab Orchard Series in Poetry First Book Award for his debut book, Cooling Board: A Long-Playing Poem, and was a Pushcart Prize Nominee in 2006. Douglas is also a founding member of the Affrilachian Poets, a Cave Canem fellow, and Poetry Editor for PLUCK!: the Journal of Affrilachian Arts & Culture. Mitchell L. H. Douglas’s second book of poems, \blak\ \al-fə bet\, is available from amazon.com.

Award-winning poets and novelist headline Fall 2014 Reiberg Reading Series

INDIANAPOLIS — The Fall 2014 Rufus & Louise Reiberg Reading Series at Indiana University-Purdue University Indianapolis features poets Marcus Wicker and Marianne Boruch and novelist Randa Jarrar.

The Department of English in the IU School of Liberal Arts at IUPUI is the series sponsor. All events, which take place at various locations on the IUPUI campus, are free and open to the public.

MarcusWicker
Marcus Wicker

The series kicks off with poet Marcus Wicker at 7:30 p.m. on Thursday, Oct. 9 in the IUPUI University Library Lilly Auditorium, 755 W. Michigan St. This event is co-sponsored by the O­ffice for Academic Affairs at IUPUI.

D.A. Powell selected Wicker’s poetry collection, “Maybe the Saddest Thing” (Harper Perennial), for the National Poetry Series. Wicker received a 2011 Ruth Lilly Fellowship and his work has appeared in American Poetry Review and many other magazines. Wicker is an assistant professor of English at the University of Southern Indiana.

Wicker served as the final judge for the 2014 IUPUI Poetry Contest. Contest winners and finalists will share their original poems in an awards ceremony preceding the Wicker reading.

MarianneBoruch
Marianne Boruch

Poet Marianne Boruch will read her work at 7 p.m. on Thursday, Oct. 30 in the Emerson Hall Anatomy Lecture Hall, 545 Barnhill Drive. This event is co-sponsored by the IU School of Medicine, the Medical Humanities and Health Studies Program in the IU School of Liberal Arts at IUPUI, and the IUPUI Arts and Humanities Institute.

Boruch is the author of the recently published poetry collection, “Cadaver, Speak,” along with eight other books of poetry. Her poetry has been anthologized in the 1997 and 2009 editions of “The Best American Poetry.” Boruch, a Fulbright visiting professor at the University of Edinburgh, Scotland, in 2012, currently teaches creative writing at Purdue University.

RandaJarrar
Randa Jarrar

Novelist Randa Jarrar will conclude the fall series with a reading at 7 p.m. on Monday, Nov. 17, at the Herron School of Art & Design Basile Auditorium, 735 W. New York St. This reading is part of the Al-Mutanabbi Street Starts Here Symposium and is co-sponsored by the IUPUI Arts and Humanities Institute in collaboration with the IUPUI Library. This event is free but registration is required.

Jarrar is an award-winning novelist, short story writer, essayist, and translator. She grew up in Kuwait and Egypt, and moved to the United States after the first Gulf War. Her novel, “A Map of Home,” was published in half a dozen languages and won a Hopwood Award, an Arab-American Book Award, and was named one of the best novels of 2008 by the Barnes and Noble Review. In 2010 Jarrar was named one of the most gifted writers of Arab origin under the age of 40.

The Rufus & Louise Reiberg Series was founded in 1997 in honor of former IUPUI Department of English chair and Professor Emeritus Rufus Reiberg and his wife, Louise. The series is made possible by the generous support of the Reiberg Family; the IUPUI Arts and Humanities Institute; the Office of the Vice Chancellor for Research; the Office of Academic Affairs; University College; and University Library.

Visitor parking for the readings is available in the North Street Garage, 819 W. North St.; the Vermont Street Garage, 1004 W. Vermont St.; and the Sports Complex Garage, 875 W. New York St.

For additional information, contact Terry Kirts at tkirts@iupui.edu or 317-274-8929 or visit http://liberalarts.iupui.edu/reiberg. Facebook user can “like” the series’ page at The Rufus & Louise Reiberg Reading Series @ IUPUI.

Reception and Lecture | “Cadaver, Speak: Poems from the Dissection Lab” by Marianne Boruch on Oct. 30

Cadaver SpeakMarianne Boruch, “Cadaver, Speak: Poems from the Dissection Lab”
October 30, 2014
Reception: 6:00, Performance: 7:00-8:30
IUPUI Emerson Hall, Auditorium, EH 304
545 Barnhill Dr.

Some books begin as a dare to the self. Marianne Boruch’s newest collection, Cadaver, Speak, is an unsettling double, a heart of two chambers. The first half is attuned to history — how time hits us, and grief — and to art and its making. The second half, the title sequence, is spoken by a ninety-nine-year-old who donated her body for dissection by medical students, a laboratory experience in which the poet, duly silenced, was privileged to take part. Born from lyric impulse, which is Boruch’s scalpel, her work examines love, death, beauty, and knowledge—the great subjects of poetry made new by a riveting reimagining.

Marianne Boruch was born in Chicago in 1950. She is the author of seven collections of poetry including The Book of Hours (Copper Canyon Press, 2011), two volumes of essays on poetry, and a memoir. After receiving her MFA from the University of Massachusetts, Amherst, she founded the MFA program at Purdue University in 1987. In addition to teaching at Purdue University, she also teaches at the low-residency MFA program for Writers at Warren Wilson College. Her recent awards include the Kingsley Tufts Poetry Award (2013), and a Fulbright/Visiting professorship at the University of Edinburgh in Scotland.

Co-sponsored by the IUPUI Arts and Humanities Institute, the Literature and Medicine Student Interest Group and the Department of Anatomy (IU School of Medicine), the Medical Humanities & Health Studies Program, and the Department of English (IU School of Liberal Arts).