Art Works Blog

Art Talk

Acclaimed children’s novelist Erin Entrada Kelly will tell you honestly that she prefers children over adults because, in her eyes, she’s still kind of like a kid. Kelly discovered her connection to young people and her knack for writing children’s literature when she wrote a collection of short...
More and more, women are cutting a wide swath across the opera landscape. It used to be that women in opera were mainly on-stage or in the costume shop, however now they are beginning to be involved in every aspect of the business of opera. Some are managing opera companies as general directors,...
Writer, director, and performer Diane Rodriguez has long been a part of the Latino artistic community, making her professional theater debut with El Teatro Campesino in the mid-1970s. In subsequent roles as co-director of the Latino Theater Initiative, board president of the Theatre Communications...
"The arts matter because they help us reimagine our situation, our place in the world. They help us create ourselves." -- Kirsten Johnson Acclaimed cinematographer, director, and camera person Kirsten Johnson has spent more than 25 years shooting documentary films across the world. Whether...
Despite a dearth of ways to engage in the arts in the small Michigan community in which she grew up, Heather Raffo knew from the time she was able to talk that she wanted to be an actress. Later, as a graduate student pursuing an acting degree, she realized that she couldn’t find plays that...
Helen Sung ’s life in music started with a red toy piano. As Sung recalled in a recent interview with NEA Director of Music and Opera Ann Meier Baker, “Somehow, this little red plastic piano showed up. It had about 12 keys and they were multi-colored, and I carried it around with me under my arm.”...
“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...

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