Art Works Blog

Art Talk

“I have learned that being an artist is one of the most vulnerable things you can do to your mind and body…” — Christine Sun Kim From works on paper that play with our understanding of standard music notation to participatory works that explore the idea of silence, through her art practice...
While working on her Master of Fine Arts in Painting at Howard University, Jessica Maria Hopkins received life-changing news. After a routine visit to the doctor’s office in 2011, she was diagnosed with cancer. Having to postpone her studies, with the support of her mother and her eight siblings,...
It would not be unfair to say composer Jeffrey Mumford has his head in the clouds. Since he was a child, Mumford has been fascinated with the patterns and variations of clouds and sunlight, which he transforms into compositions that are as textured, mesmerizing, and expansive as the natural world...
Filmmakers Rita Coburn-Whack and Bob Hercules knew only one thing for sure about one another when they first met: they both deeply admired the writer and activist Maya Angelou. They were also puzzled by the same thing: Why hadn't anyone yet made a documentary about the icon whose work had...
Perhaps more than any other type of artist, the ballerina possesses a certain inexplicable mystique. The incredible grace and physicality required of ballet dancers makes them seem of another, more beautiful world. Misty Copeland is no exception. A soloist with New York’s American Ballet Theatre (...
"We tend to underestimate the psychic costs of writing lyric poetry. It’s already a dangerous effort that requires considerable amounts of character and self-awareness." — Gregory Pardlo Gregory Pardlo , recipient of a 2006 NEA Literature Fellowship for a Translation Project, is the very definition...
"[I]f we're all writing the same poem, what's the point?" — Camille Rankine As 2017 NEA Literature Fellow Camille Rankine told us in a recent phone interview, "[Writing is...
In 1978, Howard Shalwitz came to Washington with his acting buddy Roger Brady to co-found Woolly Mammoth Theatre Company , which they envisioned would advance the art form through innovation, provocation, and a healthy embrace of artistic risk. The company’s first home was a rented church hall, and...
This year is the centenary of Ella Fitzgerald’s birth—April 25, 1917 in Newport News, Virginia—and there are musical celebrations planned across the country and around the world. And with good reason. She is a singer’s singer, a voice like crystal with a purity of range and intonation and a...
Today, we get to hear from Afro-Venezuelan singer Betsayda Machado. Twice. That's right, folks. Two blogs for the price of one. Well, two audio stories. The first in English, the second in Spanish. In mid-October, at the tail end of Hispanic Heritage Month, Betsayda Machado and the electrifying...

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