Wednesday, June 11, 2008

The Good Work of Friends, Part 2

Back from Tassajara… the workshop on “Mountains, Rivers, and the Great Earth” with Wendy Johnson and Steve Stucky was fantastic, inspiring, and relaxing all at the same time. More about learnings from that coming soon.

Tonight, the next round of highlighting the work of some of my circle of friends. These three people are vibrant artists who have inspired me to devote more attention to my creativity… my medium is writing, but as my psychic (yes, I have a psychic!) recently told me, in a broader sense, I’m an artist of life. I liked that.

* David King: I met David on my first day of graduate school at the California Institute of Integral Studies, a way back in the fall of 1993. David was the coordinator for the anthropology department back then… now he’s a collage artist (and much more). The images he creates combine sensuality, spirituality, and just plain camp and fun -- like the one you see above, titled "Shiva Scott." It’s been inspiring to watch David transform his life over the years so that it centers around his art. You can see his work on his website, or if you’re in the Bay Area, visit him at the Mission Open Studios.


* Jenesha De Rivera: Jenesha and I worked together at the Buddhist Peace Fellowship from 2004-2007. Jinky was BPF’s administrative director in those days and still consults for nonprofits, but it’s been even more fun to watch her cultivate her creative side, manifesting in both writing and filmmaking. Check out her website. Jinky and her partner, Patricia, co-edited the anthology Homelands: Womens Journeys Across Race, Place, and Time (published by Seal Press in 2006), and this weekend is the premiere of her film “Labels Are Forever” at the Queer Women of Color Film Festival this coming Saturday, June 14, in San Francisco.


* Susan Moon: Sue is another colleague from Buddhist Peace Fellowship days. Sue is a writer and editor par excellence – she’s the author of The Life and Letters of Tofu Roshi, the editor of Being Bodies: Buddhist Women on the Paradox of Embodiment and Not Turning Away: The Practice of Engaged Buddhism, and she has written more gems than I can possibly list here. Sue leads writing workshops at places like Tassajara Zen Center and Manzanita Village. Visit her website, which is a little out of date, but keep an eye out for her writing workshops because she’s a fantastic teacher too. I consider Sue as one of my editing mentors (Arnie Kotler, founder of Parallax Press and Koa Books, has been another), and it's been an honor to work with her.

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