April 2017

Opportunity Knocks!
WiVLA’s ECO Fund - Get your application in now!  2017 Educational and Cultural Opportunity Awards  
    Did an art or writing opportunity recently present itself and then you thought to yourself, “Darn! I just don’t have the cash right now?” Or has a project come to mind that would be fun, interesting, and challenging? What about a piece of equipment or supplies that you need to create your art? Have you found an interesting workshop that you’d love to attend? Is there a distant location in which you could create beautiful art or writing?
   Opportunity is knocking on your door!
   WiVLA’s ECO Fund scholarship awards will be chosen at the April 18 Meeting. The application is on the website, http://wivla.org/eco and can either be sent via email (save the form on your computer, fill it out and attach the form to your email), or by mail. All applications must be received or postmarked by Friday April 7, 2017. 
   There are certain specifications to having an accepted application, so read carefully. Applications are reviewed, and all names whose application falls within the guidelines are placed either an “artist” box or “writer” box.One name from each box will be chosen at random at the April 18 meeting. Everyone who has entered has an equal chance of being selected. 
   The program that evening will be presentations by the 2016 scholarship winners. Then, drum roll……, the new awardees will be chosen. It is always a fascinating and exciting program!

Memoirist Donna Johnson Gives March Program, “Writing the Poetic Truth in Memoir”
Top: Donna Johnson with rapt audience of 36 members and guests. Bottom: Johnson signing Holy Ghost Girl for happy members

   A childhood spent traveling around the country with a revivalist preacher and his tent retinue, including her organist mother, provided a colorful and layered past in which author Donna Johnson sought the truth of her early years.
But she had difficult and different truths to consider in writing the memoir. Facts didn’t take her far enough; the more facts, the deader her writing became. She wanted to tell the truth about her experiences and maintain the emotional connection between the story and the reader. She declared this goal as the “poetic truth” and showed us how this type of writing digs deeply into the hidden narrative of the past. Writing Holy Ghost Girl, (she called it “unpacking my childhood”), she knew she had to get rid of the “sense of facts” and break through details, facts, and events to find the real story.
Why is story important? Story can reach people, change the brain, increase oxytocin, and lead to more empathy. Donna referenced Toni Morrison’s novel Beloved, citing that although it is a fictionalized life of a slave, the power in Morrison’s writing altered Donna’ consciousness of the historical time and the slave experience. Toni Morrison had turned a tragic slave narrative into story. Story, Donna helped us understand, renders fact into felt experience for the reader or listener. Thus, she knew she had to get readers to have empathy for the preacher and his followers in order for the readers to arrive at the universal truths and the human frailties in the story of her young years. She had to fill in the bare, bald facts with poetic details and deep feeling; she had to create scenes and, more importantly, re-create her emotional truth so her life would feel real to the reader. 
Some people say that the world doesn’t need another story, but Donna reassured us that when we write the story of our innermost lives, that action brings us together in wisdom and understanding.
Donna’s talk was followed by a lively and thoughtful question and answer period with warm and inspiring conversations continuing as attendees purchased copies of Holy Ghost Girl and talked with Donna Johnson as she signed the books.  ###

President's Message
“It’s not how far I can go….it’s about how many I can bring along with me.” 
(from our very own Zita Giraldo)

We are abundantly thrilled – WiVLA hosted a very successful show, Abundant, at the Cloisters Gallery. Forty-five works of art were displayed beautifully, efforts of love and energy created by twenty-three of our artists. Opening night was a festive affair, complete with our poetry-reciting juror, John Runnels, a table laden with delicious treats from Judy Shamp’s kitchen, and many friends and acquaintances who came to view and discuss the bountiful art. 
   It is abundantly clear to me that we are a community of artists, writers, and creatives who support, invigorate, teach, and enjoy each others' journey along our creative paths. It’s the way we bring each other along with us, and how we all grow in the process. It’s the way that one artist’s work will incite another artist’s ideas, and, even in Texas, they will snowball, gathering more depth and complexity along the way. We bring each other along and become heroines for one another.
  And so we move forward, with a WiVLA future that is full of possibilities. The ECO Fund drawing will be held in April. We will bring two new lucky members along with us to further their creative lives. Come to hear last year’s ECO Fund winners, Lilibeth Andre and Lee Steiner, report on their projects and then celebrate as they pick the 2017 winners. 
   Renewal, a show at the Evelyn Rubenstein Jewish Community Center in August, will help the community mark the rebuilding of the surrounding community during the recent years’ floods. WiVLA has been invited to join the commemoration and celebration of the neighborhood community with visual art and literary pieces that reflect that theme. See the article and link for the prospectus. 
   March’s meeting was an opportunity to hear memoirist Donna Johnson speak about “Finding the Poetic Truth” in one’s writing.  She spoke eloquently and later signed her memoir Holy Ghost Girl. She will return next fall for a WiVLA writing workshop.  See the article about her visit.
   Possibilities…..my favorite word. Join us for Cultured Cocktails at Bar Boheme on April 20 for an evening of spreading WiVLA’s word – literally and visually. We have fun activities planned so that patrons who come to their happy hour will learn about us and enjoy the great possibilities that WiVLA exemplifies. We can bring them along to share future meetings, events, possibilities and challenges. See the Cultured Cocktails article for further details.
   Cori Austin

Juror John Runnels welcoming reception attendees with poetry and remarks. Members and guests listening.
Delicious reception treats by Judith Shamp.

RENEWAL Prospectus is ready times two -- Visual and Literary
WiVLA is extremely excited to collaborate with the Evelyn Rubenstein Jewish Community Center – “The J” -- in an event called One Voice, One Vibe, Our Community. As many Houstonians are aware that the greater Meyerland area was hit by devastating floods twice within a ten-month period. “The J” became a hub for relief efforts and continues to communicate with the community and local leaders in the city and county. This has led to a renewed sense of pride and excitement about the community. To celebrate the commitment to connecting and rebuilding this vital community, “The J” is sponsoring One Voice, One Vibe, Our Community.
   As the centerpiece of One Voice, One Vibe, Our Community, “The J” is commissioning an original anthem-like musical composition to reflect the resilience of the greater Meyerland area, its Jewish imprint, and the Evelyn Rubenstein Jewish Community Center. The WiVLA part of this will be an art exhibit along with written work from our writers on the topic “Renewal.” The composition will premiere at the Evelyn Rubenstein Jewish Community Center on August 20, 2017 with local musicians and singers. Earlier that afternoon, an opening reception will be held with the WIVLA art work exhibited in The Deutser Art Gallery along with a chapbook of the WiVLA written work.
 As you ruminate on the theme Renewal and what you want to create for this significant event, please think in terms of a secular approach to the topic. Because the work is to be presented to the entire Meyerland community and its neighbors, it should have broad appeal. Work with a religious slant will not be appropriate for this show.
Visual Prospectus is here.
Literary Prospectus is here.
=============   ================   =========

WiVLA Sponsors Cultured Cocktails          
Thursday, April 20 5:00 to 8:00 pm    
Bar Boheme   
307 Fairview Street
Houston TX 77006

   Bar Boheme devotes every Thursday Happy Hour to a different Houston arts or cultural group, donating a percentage of the happy hours’ profit to that group.
   April 20 is WiVLA’s turn! Boheme is described as a “Montrose bar with an artsy vibe which offers wine, cocktails, thin-crust pizzas & plenty of outdoor seating.” [Editor wants to note that good beers are in supply as well.] Vietnamese fries are another not-to-be-missed happy hour treat. http://www.barboheme.com/home
   We will have a table near the door, complete with banner, brochures, examples of our chapbooks and visual art. We need your help “womaning” this table – meeting, greeting, and being friendly. Please click here to read the entire article and discover exciting and fun activities that are planned the evening. Member Tayyba Kanwal's sample letter to friends and family is in the link as an example of how to promote WiVLA's Cultured Cocktails.
   Please join us and tell your colleagues and friends! Read on.
Special Article from WiVLA founding mother Karleen Koen -- Writefest Highlights Journal Publishing Opportunities
New member Elizabeth White-Olsen’s organization, Writespace, hosted a literary journal festival in March that saw more than 25 journal editors come to town to talk about writing for them and writing in general. This is the second year Writespace has hosted the event, called Writefest. Editors of all genres come, from science fiction to poetry, friendly and eager to share tips. Journals are often the door through which writers enter publishing, but they are also a market for experienced writers.
Continue to full article here.
  • Regina Vitolo Mader, who is our Social Media guru, gathered excellent information about Twitter and its uses. To see her advice and resources, click here. For a one-page Twitter guide, click here.
  • Looking for a gift for a special friend? This lovely teacup and saucer set is available for purchase for only $10 and is ALREADY WRAPPED. To order, email info@wivla.org
  • Item #2 from Regina Vitolo Mader: Regina asks that if members have photographs, especially of WiVLA events, that you'd like to have posted on the WiVLA social media accounts, please email her the photos as attachments to clockbirdstar@gmail.com. General info about the photos and identities of the people can be placed in the email.
  • Item #3 from Regina: Do you want to post on WiVLA's Facebook page? Click here for a short tutorial with easy-to-read instructions and images. Many thanks to Regina!
  • Cultured Cocktails - Thursday, April 20. Fundraiser at Bar Boheme. A percentage of all sales during a certain period of time this evening will go to WiVLA. 307 Fairview, Houston TX. See article in this issue.
  • We acknowledge generous donations from members Zita Giraldo, Leigh Owen, June Russell, Linda Ann Stelljes, and Lillian Tharp. Click here to read treasurer Lane Devereux's thank you to donors and helpful information about donations to WiVLA via several options.
  • Editor's Note: After the opening reception for the Abundant exhibit, there was a series of thank you emails among the volunteers. It was pleasure to read the heartfelt comments about the beauty of the exhibit, the sincere thanks to the many volunteers, and the grand support of all the artists and their work.
  • Stay tuned for upcoming events!                                                      

Please send in your news by the 20th of each month - art exhibits, literary works, news, etc. -  for inclusion in the following month’s newsletter to newsletter@wivla.org.
  • donna e perkins' work will be on exhibit at Archway Gallery from April 1 through May 4. The opening reception is Saturday, April 1 from 5:00 to 8:00 pm with remarks by donna around 6:30. Associated with the exhibit are special events with choreographers jhon r. stronks and Alexandre Farris Soares. Please visit the gallery website at http://www.archwaygallery.com
  • Rona Lesser reminds us that on Saturday, April 22 from 5:00-10:00 pm many WIVLA artists will be participating in the Biennial Art Stroll and Sale at Sawyer Yards studios.  Rona Lesser herself will be at Summer Street studio #101.  Please visit for a fun evening. Artist-designed bird houses will be for sale to benefit the Arboretum.
  • Priscilla Frake invites all WIVLA members to the opening of her show at the Jung Center on Saturday, April 8 from 5:00 to 7:00 pm. As Above, So Below: Inner and Outer Images of the Cosmos will contain metal and enamel sculptures, wall pieces and jewelry. It will run concurrently with photographer Leslie Field’s exhibit Field Explorations. Both will be on view from March 31 to April 28.
  • Jane Chance received news that her poem “Enchanted Rock,” published by Dos Gatos Press in the 2016 Texas Poetry Calendar in March and nominated for a Pushcart Prize, has been selected for reprinting in the 2018 Best-of-the-Texas Poetry Calendars. She has also sent it in as her contribution for the Poetry at Roundtop 2017 Anthology. Note to interested poets from Jane: If you attend the April festival of readings and workshops you can submit a poem for the anthology.
  • June Russell will sing with the chorus at the Gilbert & Sullivan gala concert on April 8 at Houston Baptist University. The concert includes selections from many shows, a production of The Zoo, a rarely performed piece, food, and a silent auction. For details contact:  info@hgns.org
  • A continuing exhibit includes work by Rona Lesser at the Watercolor Society International art show at the WAS-H gallery on the corner of Mandell and Alabama Streets. There are extended hours during March on Friday, Saturday, and Sunday afternoons. Check website for hours. The exhibit dates are March 14 through April 6.       https://watercolorhouston.org/
  • Lilibeth Andre has been accepted into the Women's Caucus for Art's Vignettes Exhibition during Dallas Arts Week, April 5th - 9th, at the former Women's Museum Building in Fair Park (3800 Parry Ave, Dallas, TX 75226).  
  • Social media tutorials and fact sheets by Regina Vitolo Mader are under the NEWS heading. Many thanks to Regina for clear and concise advice!
  • Editors Note: We know a lot of you are showing your work and getting articles and books published, so we ask you to send the information to newsletter@WiVLA.org by the 20th of each month. We want to support you and come to your openings and readings; timely info to the newsletter gets the word to members and their friends and contacts.

~  Inprint opens its doors at 1520 West Main on the first Friday of every month from 9 am to 12 noon for a writing cafe. Any and all writers looking for a pleasant morning space in which to write are welcome. For information, click here.  Be sure and use the link to confirm the Friday availability. A few Fridays in 2017 are blocked due to other schedules.

WriteSpace is offering several workshops in April. For pricing, registration and more information, go to the WriteSpace website or contact them. Please see the WriteSpace website for details. In this issue, Karleen Koen tells us about the recent second annual Writefest. See her article above.

~ Public Poetry  announces a marvelous month of events in April. They have a group going to the Round Top Poetry Festival on a poetry bus and readings all around the Houston area. Of special interest are:
1) Public Poetry alumni appearing at the 6th Anniversary Reading at the Central Library on Saturday, April 15 and 2) Poets and Musicians at Night on Saturday April 29. "All Public Poetry members and anyone who has read for Public Poetry at any time in the past 6 years is invited to read at our 2nd annual alumni reading, celebrating our 6th Anniversary and the start of our 7th year in partnership with Houston Public Library."   http://www.publicpoetry.net/calendar

~ Events and upcoming shows are noted on the Visual Arts Alliance's (VAA) helpful website at http://visualartsalliance.org/

~ Book lovers may want to attend MenilFest & Gulf Coast indie book fest on Saturday, May 6 from 11:00 am to 5 pm. This is an outdoor festival on the grounds of the Menil. More information at web address here.

~  From Cori Austin -- Creative Mornings Houston: Every month, creative people gather at a designated place for a program designed to inspire and entertain. There is time for networking, visiting, meeting new people, and having some kind of morning food and drink. I've been three times. Each time has been totally different, but the common denominator (I am a math teacher, by the way), is always interesting people having interesting conversations. To join, sign up for the Houston newsletter at https://creativemornings.com/cities/hou. It’s always on a Friday morning and begins at 8:30 am. The location changes each time. 

~ Member Debbie Blumberg writes, "I'm the founder and co-president of the new Texas Chapter of the American Society of Journalists and Authors, ASJA, and would love to grow our group. Founded in 1948, ASJA is the nation's professional organization of independent nonfiction writers. Our membership consists of nearly 1,200 freelance writers of magazine articles, trade books, and many other forms of nonfiction writing. Professional writers are able to apply to join. In Texas, we're planning several events, networking and career development opportunities. ASJA also has an amazing yearly conference in New York. Anyone interested can contact me for more information - deborah.blumberg@gmail.com.

~ The newsletter editor suggests you check out the Houston Writers Guild webpage for useful links, workshops, contests, critique circles, advertising opportunities, and news about their April conference. The conference schedule is well-rounded and explores many topics. Good info can be found at http://www.houstonwritersguild.org

~ Here's another editor's choice: Archway Gallery, known to all of us, is having an exciting schedule in April. Along with member donna e perkins' exhibit, there will be dance and literary events and a special Palette to Palate Dinner. See the gallery's website at www.archwaygallery.com.

~  The Eighth International Urban Sketchers Symposium will be held in Chicago this year. 
http://www.urbansketchers.org/2017/01/registration-information-for-8th.html#more  This is a fantastic opportunity to meet people from all over the world, attend demonstrations, do sketchcrawls around the Chicago area, and learn more about sketching. It is for all levels of ability. 

~  3rd Coast Books is now accepting fiction and non-fiction submissions in seven genres. Please go to: www.3rdcoastbooks.com

~ Art Houston is a new local magazine dedicated to all types of art and they are seeking articles. For general submission guidelines, contact the publisher at Art Houston.

~  Writers will find an abundance of resources on this new website created by writing coach Joan Dempsey.

Calls for Entry:  Visual Art
Inclusion in this list does not indicate endorsement by WiVLA. We recommend you research each contest, and contact the sponsor(s).
~ Archway Gallery has an important link on their website: Call for Artists for their annual juried show later this year. Click here to go to the website.

~ Member Leigh Owen shares an online resource for public domain images:
She says, "I was amazed to read that the images are even okay for commercial use."

Member Rona Lesser sends a notice about Breast Strokes: Hadassah Bares All for A.R.T. -- Awareness, Research, and Treatment. This is a unique artistic opportunity with a breast cancer fundraiser. A page with information is here.

~  "WAGE ON!" explores how women artists view the current economic climate and its impact on wages, identity, and lives of women both in and beyond the art world. Artists at all career levels are invited to submit work for consideration on this timely topic. The exhibition will be an integral part of the 2017 WCA conference that runs concurrent with CAA and the TFAP day of panels.

~ Fraction Magazine is an online venue dedicated to contemporary and fine art photography. It brings together diverse bodies of work by established and emerging artists from around the globe.They accept submissions from new and emerging photographers.

~ FreshArts, of which we are members, has many opportunities for artists listed on their website - check it out!

~ Juried Art Services has a digital jurying system. Click on the link above for more information. 

~ CAFE' for Artists!  www.CallForEntry.org is a website that lists calls for entry nation-wide. Descriptions of type of art and theme are listed, as is a link for more information. Deadlines are included.
Calls for Entry:  Literary Art
Inclusion in this list does not indicate endorsement by WiVLA. We recommend you research each contest, and contact the sponsor(s).
~ Gulf Coast: A Journal of Literature and Fine Arts announces its 2017 contests and awards. The literary journal was founded at the University of Houston and holds an annual event with cash awards to the winners and publication opportunities. Please click "Contests" on their web page for full information and submission guidelines. http://www.gulfcoastmag.org

~ Narrative regularly publishes fiction, poetry, and nonfiction, including stories, novels, novel excerpts, novellas, personal essays, humor, sketches, memoirs, literary biographies, commentary, reportage, interviews, and features of interest to readers who take pleasure in storytelling and imaginative prose.

~ Poets & Writers has a great database of conferences and residencies for writers. Check it out.
~ A Yahoo group has an ongoing and frequently updated list of creative writing opportunities. Writers can join and the notifications come directly to your email.https://groups.yahoo.com/neo/groups/CRWROPPS-B/info     
~ Winning Writers is another great website for writing opportunities. Check it out by clicking here

Renew Membership Now
Make 2017 your opportunity for creative encouragement and support by renewing your membership to WiVLA. This year promises to be outstanding in programs, writing and visual art opportunities, and friendships with interesting and creative women. Keep your membership current by renewing today! You can do it easily online: http://wivla.org/membership.htm or download a membership form and send a check to WiVLA, P.O. Box 130406, Houston, TX 77219-0406.

You can also renew at the April meeting. To facilitate this, please print the information form and fill it out ahead of time so you don't miss the opportunity to visit friends before the meeting! If you are a new member who joined at the end of 2016 (September through December), your membership will run through the entire year of 2017.
If you shop at Randall's, use the "Good Neighbor" code of 5341 and WiVLA will benefit every time you shop!

Please forward WiVLA Voices to all your friends who might be interested in WiVLA. BRING A FRIEND TO OUR NEXT MEETING!

Upcoming Events

ECO Fund Submission
Time is running out!
Received through email or postmarked by Friday, April 7
See article with details.

WiVLA Member Meeting
2016 ECO Fund Reports
2017 ECO Fund Awards

Tuesday, April 18
Location:  Metropolitan Multi
Service Center
1475 West Gray
Houston TX 77019
Gather at 5:45 pm

WiVLA Fun and Fundraiser
Cultured Cocktails
Thursday, April 20
5:00 to 8:00 pm

Bar Boheme, 307 Fairview
Houston TX 77006
Fundraiser for WiVLA
Join us for bar food 
including all kinds of
beverages. A portion of the
evening's proceeds goes
to WiVLA.  See article in

body of this newsletter.


WiVLA Member Meeting
Tuesday, May 16
Topic: Videos and presentation by Kay Adshead
intermingled with members' stories or art regarding our own acts of defiance.
"Women's Acts of Defiance"
Location: Archway Gallery
2305 Dunlavy
Houston Tx 77006



For a complete list of upcoming events, visit the WiVLA calendar online.


About Women in the Visual and Literary Arts

The mission of WiVLA is to provide an inspiring forum for women to explore and advance their creative development, to promote their work in the marketplace, and to infuse the community with their spirit of cooperation and invention.

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WiVLA 2017 Board of Directors

President - Cori Austin       

Vice President - Lilibeth Andre

Secretary - Lee Steiner

Treasurer - Lane Devereux      
Membership - Zita Giraldo and Kristine Rivers

Communications -  Mary Ramain

Social Media - Regina Vitolo Mader
Programs - Lillian Tharp              

Newsletter - Kay McStay          

Visual Arts - Dune Tencer and June Russell

Literary Arts - Karleen Koen and Mary Harlan

At-Large - Josena Arquieta  and Tayyba Kanwal

Historian - Judy Shamp

Our mailing address is:
Women in the Visual and Literary Arts (WiVLA)
P. O. Box 130406
Houston, TX  77219-0406


Quick Links...


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Public Poetry

Glasstire Texas:  Visual Art News and Reviews

Fresh Arts Coalition Houston

Visual Arts Alliance

Houston Writers Guild

Lawndale Art Center


Gulf Coast Poets

Inprint Houston

Texas Accountants and Lawyers for the Arts

Houston Press

Paper City Magazine

Arts Hound

Houston Culture Map

WriteSpace Houston

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