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Art Behind Walls

doesn't have to be hidden away. In Toledo, we are extremely fortunate to have the Toledo Museum of Art gracing a space in Old West End neighborhood but edging downtown. Instead of squirreling away dusty dead white guy canvas, our museum makes active work of involving the neighborhood, opens its doors without charging for admission, and hosts all kinds of events for families and adults, from wine tastings to interactive classes.

I am extremely honored to be a part of a contest inviting poets to write original works inspired by specific pieces in the museum collection. While the submission period has closed, you can interact with art at any time! And what I learned from leading a workshop in March ( was that we have literary, musical, and visual artists all over this city and neighboring cities! All ages, all interests, but all excited to find a deeper way to interact with the art around us.

Your challenge today is to find a piece of visual or musical art. Sit with it. Ask questions of it... what is the artist trying to tell me? Is there a story here? Why did they choose the colors, composition, tone? What am I connecting with in this piece? How would it feel to be the artist creating this piece?

Write to answer a question or two. Write to recreate the visual art as a poem. Write to respond to it.

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