Friday, June 25, 2021 7pm
Hosted by Booksmith and The Bindery
This virtual event is free and all ages, but RSVP is required.
Clarion Alley Mural Project (CAMP) is proud to present the third event of our Wall + Response project, featuring sixteen Bay Area poets responding to the social/ political/ racial/ justice narratives of four murals on Clarion Alley, hosted by Booksmith and The Bindery on Friday, June 25, 2021 at 7pm.
Curated by CAMP artist and organizer Megan Wilson (wall) and poet Maw Shein Win (response), the fourth and final event in the series features Youssef Alaoui, Jason Bayani, Genny Lim and Michael Warr responding to the mural The Arab Liberation Mural /Will To Live (2018) by Art Forces, Arab Resource Organizing Center (AROC), and Arab Youth Organizing (AYO).
The Arab Liberation Mural / Will To Live (2018) by Art Forces, Arab Resource Organizing Center (AROC), and Arab Youth Organizing (AYO) celebrates and honors the lives of six Arab leaders: Rasmea Odeh, Mehdi Ben Barka, Naji Diafullah, Leila Khaled, Basel Al Araj, and Yasser Mortaja. The mural manifests and expresses the resilience and resistance of the Bay Area community to attacks on freedom and liberties of Arab, Muslim, people of color, immigrants and refugees. Wall + Response condemns the ongoing violence against Palestinians in East Jerusalem and Gaza by the state of Israel and stands in solidarity with those fighting occupation and in support of the global movement for the Palestinian right of return.
ABOUT THE AUTHORS
Youssef Alaoui is a Moroccan Colombian American. His family and heritage are an endless source of inspiration for his varied, dark, spiritual and carnal writings. He has an MFA in Poetics from New College of California. His work has appeared in Exquisite Corpse, Big Bridge, 580 Split, Dusie Press, RIVET Journal, Paris Lit Up, The Opiate, and nominated for a Pushcart at Full of Crow. His short story collection “Fiercer Monsters” was published by Nomadic Press of Oakland, CA. His poetry collection “Critics of Mystery Marvel” was published by 2Leaf Press of NYC. www.youssefalaoui.info
Jason Bayani is the author of Locus (Omnidawn Publishing 2019) and Amulet (Write Bloody Publishing 2013). He’s an MFA graduate from Saint Mary’s College, a Kundiman fellow, and works as the artistic director for Kearny Street Workshop, the oldest multi-disciplinary Asian Pacific American arts organization in the country. His publishing credits include World Literature Today, Muzzle Magazine, Lantern Review, and other publications. Jason performs regularly around the country and debuted his solo theater show “Locus of Control” in 2016 with theatrical runs in San Francisco, New York, and Austin.
Genny Lim is San Francisco Jazz Poet Laureate emeritus. Her most recent poetry-music collaboration, Don’t Shoot! Requiem in Black, dedicated to Black Lives Matter, premiered at SF Jazz Center in April 2018 with Marshall Trammell, Francis Wong, and Equipto. Lim’s award-winning play, Paper Angels, was the first Asian American play that aired on PBS’s American Playhouse in 1985 and has been produced throughout the U.S., Canada and China. She is author of five poetry collections, Winter Place, Child of War, Paper Gods and Rebels, KRA!, La Morte Del Tempo, and co-author of Island: Poetry and History of Chinese Immigrants on Angel Island, winner of the American Book Award and the forthcoming anthology of Senior Asian American memoirs, Window: Glimpses of Our Storied Past.
San Francisco poet Michael Warr is the 2020 Berkeley Lifetime Achievement Awardee. His books include Of Poetry & Protest: From Emmett Till to Trayvon Martin (W.W. Norton), The Armageddon of Funk, We Are All The Black Boy, and Power Lines: A Decade of Poetry From Chicago’s Guild Complex. He is a San Francisco Library Laureate and recipient of a Creative Work Fund award for his multimedia project Tracing Poetic Memory, PEN Oakland Josephine Miles Award for Excellence in Literature, Black Caucus of the American Library Association Award, Gwendolyn Brooks Significant Illinois Poets Award, and a National Endowment for the Arts Fellowship. His poetry is translated into Chinese as part of “Two Languages / One Community” a collaborative project with poet and translator Chun Yu. Michael is the former Deputy Director of the Museum of the African Diaspora and a board member of the Friends of the San Francisco Public Library.
ABOUT THE ARTISTS
Art Forces uses community public art and technology, including murals, websites, social and new media, to inspire critical thinking and action. Art Forces moves from the local to the global, from the streets of San Francisco Bay Area to Olympia Washington. to refugee camps of Palestine and Lebanon. The projects make visible histories and relationships that have been obliterated and forgotten; making connections to national and global issues of social justice, borders, precarity, migrations and decolonization.
ABOUT THE ARAB RESOURCE ORGANIZING CENTER (AROC) and ARAB YOUTH ORGANIZING (AYO)
The Arab Resource and Organizing Center (AROC) is a grassroots organization working to empower and organize our community towards justice and self-determination for all. Recognizing the diversity of experiences and interests within the Arab community, AROC devises a multi-pronged strategy to meet those needs while prioritizing the most marginalized sectors of our constituency to inform our work. AROC envisions powerful and liberated Arab communities living with dignity from here to our homelands and sees the liberation of Arab people inextricably tied to the liberation of all people of color.
Arab Youth Organizing (AYO), is the youth arm of the Arab Resource and Organizing Center. AYO is made up of Arab youth ages 14-22 from all over the Bay Area who engage in political education, skill building, and organizing.
ABOUT WALL + RESPONSE
Wall + Response features 16 poets responding to the social/ political/ racial/ justice narratives of four murals on Clarion Alley, curated by CAMP artist and organizer Megan Wilson and poet Maw Shein Win.
- Poets Heather Bourbeau, Aileen Cassinetto, Tongo Eisen-Martin, and Chris Stroffolino responding to the mural Justice for Luís D. Góngora Pat by Marina Perez-Wong and Elaine Chu, working with Justice4Luis;
- Poets Karla Brundage, Jennifer Hasegawa, Tureeda Mikell, and Kim Shuck responding to the work What We Want! by Emory Douglas/Black Panther Party / remix by CUBA D8, Mace;
- Poets Celeste Chan, MK Chavez, Paul Corman-Roberts and Tim Xonnelly responding to the mural Affordable Housing/Vivienda Asequible by the SF Print Collective working with the Western Regional Advocacy Project (WRAP).
- Poets Youssef Alaoui, Jason Bayani, Genny Lim, and Michael Warr responding to the mural The Arab Liberation Mural by Art Forces, Arab Resource Organizing Center (AROC), and Arab Youth Organizing (AYO).
The project was originally conceived to culminate in four quarterly public events to be presented on Clarion Alley. However, due to the pandemic the poets are instead being filmed by videographer Mahima Kotian reading their work in front of the murals on Clarion Alley. Kotian is creating videos for each series that are being presented as part of live online events. All the events are free and open to the public.
The poets are creating new poems in response to the murals, and will be reading those and other selected works at the events.
Wall + Response is made possible by the generous support of the San Francisco Art Commission and the Zellerbach Family Foundation.
You can read more about CAMP and Wall + Response here.
ABOUT THE CURATORS
ABOUT THE CURATORS
Megan Wilson is a visual artist, writer, and activist based in San Francisco. Wilson has been an artist and core organizer with Clarion Alley Mural Project (CAMP) since 2001. In 2018 she co-directed and co-organized (with Christopher Statton and Nano Warsono) CAMP’s second international exchange and residency project, Bangkit /Arise between artists from Yogyakarta, Indonesia and San Francisco/Bay Area in collaboration with the Asian Art Museum of San Francisco. The second phase of the project will take place 2021-22. meganwilson.com
Maw Shein Win is a poet, editor, and educator who lives and teaches in the Bay Area. Her poetry chapbooks are Ruins of a glittering palace (SPA/Commonwealth Projects) and Score and Bone (Nomadic Press). Invisible Gifts: Poems was published by Manic D Press in 2018. She was a 2019 Visiting Scholar in the Department of English at UC Berkeley. Win is the first poet laureate of El Cerrito, California (2016 – 2018). Her full-length poetry collection is Storage Unit for the Spirit House (Omnidawn, 2020), longlisted for the 2021 PEN America Open Book Award. She often collaborates with visual artists, musicians, and other writers and is a Spring 2021 ARC Poetry Fellow at UC Berkeley. mawsheinwin.com
ABOUT THE VIDEOGRAPHER
Mahima Kotian is a freelance photographer and videographer. Originally from Mumbai (India), she moved to San Francisco to pursue a Master’s degree in Communications. She loves all things art, from painting to reading to filming. Mahima aspires to be a videographer and video editor, and narrate great stories through her content.
ABOUT THE SOUND PERSON, PUBLICIST, EVENT PRODUCER
Evan Karp is the creator and executive director of Quiet Lightning, recognized by the Yerba Buena Center for the Arts as one of the 100 “people, organizations, and movements who are shaping the future of culture”, and the founding editor of Litseen, recognized by the New York Times as a go-to, near-comprehensive source for Bay Area literary events. He’s written columns for the San Francisco Chronicle, KQED, SF Weekly, SF/Arts and The Rumpus, and his nonfiction and poetry have appeared in Guardian UK, BOMBlog, Eleven Eleven, Omniverse, Vertebrae, and a fading constellation of other places. With his brother Miles, he combines music, words, and other sounds as Turk & Divis; with Maw Shein Win, as Vata & the Vine. Evan is the events manager for Booksmith, The Bindery, and Berkeley Arts & Letters.