NoViolet Bulawayo – 10/20 – 8:30pm – Frick Fine Arts

PCWS Presents NoViolet Bulawayo!

Hello Pittsburgh! I hope you’re all bundled up and protecting yourself from this sudden, cold weather. In a week’s time, NoViolet Bulawayo will be coming for the Pittsburgh Contemporary Writers Series.

NoViolet Bulawayo is the author of We Need New Names (May 2013) which has been recognized with the LA Times Book Prize Art Seidenbaum Award for First Fiction, the Pen/Hemingway Award, the Etisalat Prize for Literature, the Barnes and Noble Discover Award (second place), and the National Book Foundation “5 Under 35” Fiction Selection. We Need New Names was shortlisted for the Man Booker Prize and the Guardian First Book Award, and selected to the New York Times Notable Books of 2013 list, the Barnes and Noble Discover Great New Writers list, and others. NoViolet’s story “Hitting Budapest” won the 2011 Caine Prize for African Writing.

NoViolet earned her MFA at Cornell University where she was a recipient of the Truman Capote Fellowship. She was a Stegner Fellow at Stanford University, where she now teaches as a Jones Lecturer in Fiction. NoViolet grew up in Zimbabwe.

Stay tuned for quotes and excerpts! Don’t forget to like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter for more!


Please join us for our second reading of the 2014/15 season with Adam Hochschild on Thursday, Oct. 16 at 8:30pm in the Frick Fine Arts Auditorium. Free and open to the public.

Adam Hochschild – 10/16 – 8:30pm – Frick Fine Arts

Today’s the day!

Adam Hochschild will be joining us tonight at 8:30pm in the auditorium of Frick Fine Arts. As always, it is free and open to all! Here’s my favorite quote by Adam Hochschild, found in his book, King Leopold’s Ghost: A Story of Greed, Terror and Heroism in Colonial Africa. It talks about imperalism and its vast and important effects on art.
 

Most striking about the traditional societies of the Congo was their remarkable artwork: baskets, mats, pottery, copper and ironwork, and, above all, woodcarving. It would be two decades before Europeans really noticed this art. Its discovery then had a strong influence on Braque, Matisse, and Picasso — who subsequently kept African art objects in his studio until his death. Cubism was new only for Europeans, for it was partly inspired by specific pieces of African art, some of them from the Pende and Songye peoples, who live in the basin of the Kasai River, one of the Congo’s major tributaries.

It was easy to see the distinctive brilliance that so entranced Picasso and his colleagues at their first encounter with this art at an exhibit in Paris in 1907. In these central African sculptures some body parts are exaggerated, some shrunken; eyes project, cheeks sink, mouths disappear, torsos become elongated; eye sockets expand to cover almost the entire face; the human face and figure are broken apart and formed again in new ways and proportions that had previously lain beyond sight of traditional European realism.

The art sprang from cultures that had, among other things, a looser sense than Islam or Christianity of the boundaries between our world and the next, as well as those between the world of humans and the world of beasts. Among the Bolia people of the Congo, for example, a king was chosen by a council of elders; by ancestors, who appeared to him in a dream; and finally by wild animals, who signaled their assent by roaring during a night when the royal candidate was left at a particular spot in the rain forest. Perhaps it was the fluidity of these boundaries that granted central Africa’s artists a freedom those in Europe had not yet discovered.


Please join us for our second reading of the 2014/15 season with Adam Hochschild on Thursday, Oct. 16 at 8:30pm in the Frick Fine Arts Auditorium. Free and open to the public.

 

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Adam Hochschild – 10/16 – 8:30pm – Frick Fine Arts

Good afternoon, Pittsburgh!

   

Here’s an excerpt from Adam Hochschild’s book, To End All Wars. It focuses on World War I’s critics from an investigative journalism angle. The excerpt was taken from the introduction, Clash of Dreams. 

 

Those sent to jail for opposing the war included not just young men who defied the draft, but older men — and a few women. If we could time-travel our way into British prisons in late 1917 and early 1918 we would meet some extraordinary people, including the nation’s leading investigative journalist, a future winner of the Nobel Prize, more than half a dozen future members, of Parliament, one future cabinet minister, and a former newspaper editor who was publishing a clandestine journal for his fellow inmates on toilet paper. It would be hard to find a more distinguished array of people ever behind bars in a Western country.

 


Please join us for our second reading of the 2014/15 season with Adam Hochschild on Thursday, Oct. 16 at 8:30pm in the Frick Fine Arts Auditorium. Free and open to the public.

 

 

 

Adam Hochschild – 10/16 – 8:30pm – Frick Fine Arts

Adam HochschildHello Pittsburgh!

 

I hope the beginning of fall is treating you all well. Who doesn’t love a little bit of sweater weather?

 

Good news – our next writer is coming on Thursday, October 16th at 8:30pm! Adam Hochschild is an accomplished author, journalist, and lecturer. He primarily focuses on non-fiction books since he believes he lacks “the ability to invent characters.”

 

Hochschild’s books have been translated into five languages and have won prizes from the Overseas Press Club of America, the World Affairs Council, the Eugene V. Debs Foundation, and the Society of American Travel Writers. Three of his books — including King Leopold’s Ghost — have been named Notable Books of the Year by The New York Times Book Review and Library Journal. King Leopold’s Ghost was also awarded the 1998 California Book Awards gold medal for nonfiction.

 

More excerpts, videos, and pictures coming soon!

 


Please join us for our second reading of the 2014/15 season with Adam Hochschild on Thursday, Oct. 16 at 8:30pm in the Frick Fine Arts Auditorium. Free and open to the public.

 

Lucie Brock-Broido – 9/25 – 8:30pm – Frick Fine Arts

Happy Hump Day, Pittsburgh!

Need a mid-day boost? Here is the opening of “Gaudy Infinitesimal,” a poem about waking up with a disturbing dream stuck in your head:

By morning, you will be invisible, mon dream—
You are every rush-moth in your story, every torso, every bitch.
Now, you are distracting Moi.
This is my work, the infidelities of me, my own ivory hillocks, my toy
Pram filled with slippery mice, my own mares fetlock-deep in squalls
Of snow.

Lucie Brock-Broido


Please join us for our first reading of the 2014/15 season with Lucie Brock-Broido on Thursday, Sept. 25 at 8:30pm in the Frick Fine Arts Auditorium. Free and open to the public.

Lucie Brock-Broido – 9/25 – 8:30pm – Frick Fine Arts

Good afternoon, everyone!

 

Just another dose of the dear Lucie Brock-Broido to get you ready for her visit this Thursday! This poem is from her first collection, “A Hunger.” It is titled Domestic Mysticism.

 

In thrice 10,000 seasons, I will come back to this world
In a white cotton dress. Kingdom of After My Own Heart.
Kingdom of Fragile. Kingdom of Dwarves. When I come home,
Teacups will quiver in their Dresden saucers, pentatonic chimes
Will move in wind. A covey of alley cats will swarm on the side
Porch & perch there, portents with quickened heartbeats
You will feel against your ankles as you pass through.

After the first millenium, we were supposed to die out.
You had your face pressed up against the coarse dyed velvet
Of the curtain, always looking out for your own transmigration:
What colors you would wear, what cut of jewel,
What kind of pageantry, if your legs would be tied
Down, if there would be wandering tribes of minstrels
Following with woodwinds in your wake.

This work of mine, the kind of work which takes no arms to do,
Is least noble of all. It’s peopled by Wizards, the Forlorn,
The Awkward, the Blinkers, the Spoon-Fingered, Agnostic Lispers,
Stutterers of Prayer, the Flatulent, the Closet Weepers,
The Charlatans. I am one of those. In January, the month the owls
Nest in, I am a witness & a small thing altogether. The Kingdom
Of Ingratitude. Kingdom of Lies. Kingdom of How Dare I.

I go on dropping words like little pink fish eggs, unawares, slightly
Illiterate, often on the mark. Waiting for the clear whoosh
Of fluid to descend & cover them. A train like a silver
Russian love pill for the sick at heart passes by
My bedroom window in the night at the speed of mirage.
In the next millenium, I will be middle aged. I do not do well
In the marrow of things. Kingdom of Trick. Kingdom of Drug.

In a lung-shaped suburb of Virginia, my sister will be childless
Inside the ice storm, forcing the narcissus. We will send
Each other valentines. The radio blowing out
Vaughan Williams on the highway’s purple moor.
At nine o’clock, we will put away our sewing to speak
Of lofty things while, in the pantry, little plants will nudge
Their frail tips toward the light we made last century.

When I come home, the dwarves will be long
In their shadows & promiscuous. The alley cats will sneak
Inside, curl about the legs of furniture, close the skins
Inside their eyelids, sleep. Orchids will be intercrossed & sturdy.
The sun will go down as I sit, thin armed, small breasted
In my cotton dress, poked with eyelet stitches, a little lace,
In the queer light left when a room snuffs out.

I draw a bath, enter the water as a god enters water:
Fertile, knowing, kind, surrounded by glass objects
Which could break easily if mishandled or ill-touched.
Everyone knows an unworshipped woman will betray you.
There is always that promise, I like that. Kingdom of Kinesis.
Kingdom of Benevolent. I will betray as a god betrays,
With tenderheartedness. I’ve got this mystic streak in me.

 


 

Please join us for our first reading of the 2014/15 season with Lucie Brock-Broido on Thursday, Sept. 25 at 8:30pm in the Frick Fine Arts Auditorium. Free and open to the public.

Lucie Brock-Broido – 9/25 – 8:30pm – Frick Fine Arts

Happy Monday, Pittsburgh!

 

I hope your week is off to a good start. If not, here’s an excerpt from Lucie Brock-Broido’s third collection, “Trouble in Mind” to brighten up your day!

 

When, after many years, the raptor beak
Let loose of you,
He dropped your tiny body
In the scarab-colored hollow

Of a carriage, left you like a finch
Wrapped in its nest of linens wound

With linden leaves in a child’s cardboard box.

Tonight the wind is hover-

Hunting as the leather seats of swings go back
And forth with no one in them

As certain and invisible as
Red scarves silking endlessly

From a magician’s hollow hat
And the spectacular catastrophe

Of your endless childhood
Is done.


Please join us for our first reading of the 2014/15 season with Lucie Brock-Broido on Thursday, Sept. 25 at 8:30pm in the Frick Fine Arts Auditorium. Free and open to the public.

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