one of the best parts of spending my days teaching
is hearing all the fantastical tales
that spring from the kinder
with their open eyes and open hearts.
image credit: nicolette sowder, wilderchild
attending the annual ann arbor art fair
i had great luck and the honor of meeting
photographer/human rights advocate, jim spillane.
i happened by his stall
drawn in by the beauty and subjects of his photographs
especially taken with his pictures of children
after much thought
finally decided on one
a young tibetan child
tiny hands held together in hello.
i asked jim his story
how he had come to take these stunning pictures all over the world.
once a criminal defense attorney in the gerald ford white house
representing vietnam war draft resisters seeking amnesty
he got sick, had a horrible experience
changed his life
trained with an ansel adams associate
began traveling the world
taking photographs of people
his subject is the human condition and the connections and responsibilities we have for each other.
using his pictures as a way to create interest, open discussion, communicate, call attention to a cause
he has worked taking photographs of workers at a nepalese brick factory for many years
created a photo book of the workers
to speak out and to tell their stories with his photographs
still seeking to help those in need and to be an effective advocate for them.
he is a natural artist, storyteller, teacher, advocate, and man.
“in recognizing the humanity of our fellow beings, we pay ourselves the highest tribute.”
-thurgood marshall, former justice of supreme court of the united states
link to his website: jimspillane.com
link to his book, ‘the face of bricks’: https://www.blurb.com/b/9897011-the-face-of-bricks
i recently went with a group of colleagues/friends
to find the artist, dabls
working on his block in detroit
where we learned so much from him
an experience i’ll never forget
dabls’ installation-‘iron teaching rocks how to rust’
uses materials as metaphors
to pass on his stories
of african and european art/cultures
open to everyone
he can be found working and sharing stories
on this abandoned block
that he has reclaimed
as his own and the community’s
most every day
dalbas mbad african bead museum
where each of his beads tells a story
dabls’ art has brought this house to life
“Stories are able to help us to become more whole, to become Named.
And Naming is one of the impulses behind all art;
to give a name to the cosmos, we see despite all the chaos.”
The Kresge Foundation elected Dabls as “2022 Eminent Artist”
to recognize his accomplishments in the arts as well as his lifelong impact on Detroit’s culture.
to read his full story go to:
or just stop by to see him.
what an honor and a joy
to see the culmination
of my dear friend, breeda kelly miller’s
hours, days, months, year, spent
writing, creating, staging, rehearsing, distilling
and bringing the story of her mother, mary kelly
to life on stage at the world premiere
of her emotional and brilliant one-woman play,
Mrs. Kelly’s Journey Home.
the arthur miller theater, ann arbor, the university of michigan
“you should feel a flow of joy because you are alive. your body will feel full of life.
that is what you must give from the stage. your life. no less. that is art: to give all you have.”
Directed by Brian Cox, a Pencilpoint Theatre Production. Go to mrskellysjourneyhome.com for updates.
mother goose waits patiently on a rock in the river
luckily she has lots of stories to tell until baby’s big enough to swim.
“rock and roll is music, and why should music contribute to…juvenile delinquency?
if people are going to be juvenile delinquents,
they’re going to be delinquents if the hear… mother goose rhymes.”
huron river, argo park, ann arbor, michigan, usa – spring 2021
loving my new journals and so looking forward to filling them
“language allows us to reach out to people, to touch them with our innermost fears, hopes, disappointments, victories.
to reach out to people we’ll never meet.
it’s the greatest legacy you could ever leave your children or your loved ones:
the history of how you felt.”
-simon van booy