“Solitude is fine but you need someone to tell that solitude is fine.” -Honore de Balzac
The world faces a moment perhaps like no other – when each of us in our heavily connected lives must retreat to the relative safety of home, eschewing the company of others for a time. We are accustomed to moving as we please, when we please, and the world economy relies on our ability to do so. Now is a moment when the world slows its collective pace, finds a new rhythm for a while, relies on each other to keep us all safe. Now is a time to go back to ways we have quickly forgotten – to picking up the phone or writing a letter to a friend to make sure they are OK and to say that although we are all apart, in truth we are together.
Frans van Lent spoke to us for a second time from the Netherlands where he lives and works. At present, van Lent has a live IndieGoGo project titled La Biennale de Momon. Momon is a very small town in France with a handful of homes but no church or other public facilities. Van Lent has a home there and has witnessed the complete transformation of this once farming village to a small enclave of retired people from other countries. While the material aspects of the village remain unchanged, the influence of the people coming and going differ vastly from 30 years ago. The Biennale brings together seven artists who will create online-only work. Each artist will live in the village for a week, familiarizing themselves with the place and preparing to create. At the end of the Biennale, they will leave absolutely no trace on the village. The project will take place in July 2020. To hear more about this and other projects by Frans van Lent, listen to the complete interview.
Carol Ann Davis is a writer who spoke to us about her recent book The Nail in the Tree. Aside from her writing, she teaches at Fairfield University and, at the time she spoke to us on March 11, 2020, was in the process of preparing the university for remote learning in response to the COVID-19 Pandemic. Her new book is an essay collection narrating her time living in the aftermath of the Sandy Hook shooting in Newtown. Her sons were elementary students at another school in Newtown that day and this book examines that day and raising her boys in the subsequent years. To hear more about how Davis took on the daunting task of getting words on paper about this personal and indeed national trauma, listen to the complete interview.
A Few Words to Keep in your Pocket:
Lean into the relative solitude of this moment, but find ways to reach out while you do.
Books to Read
What are you reading? Add your titles to our reading list here. Carol Ann Davis’ book The Nail in the Tree: Essays on Art, Violence and Childhood can be found, along with her other works, at .
Artists and curators interested in the opportunity to hold an exhibit at a storefront gallery in East Chelsea, New York are invited to apply for CUE‘s current open call. Two artists as well as an emerging curator are selected each year and are paired up with a CUE selection panel member who acts as guide. CUE offers shipping budget, honorarium and other incentives to selected artists and curators. For full details, visit the website. Deadline for submissions is March 18.
Weekly Edited Grant and Residency Deadlines – review the list here.
Brainard Carey is an author, artist and educator. He is the director of Praxis Center for Aesthetics. He has written six books for artists; Making it in the Art World, New Markets for Artists, The Art World Demystified, Fund Your Dreams Like a Creative Genius, Sell Online Like a Creative Genius and Succeed with Social Media Like a Creative Genius.