Wednesday, October 1, 2008

Kirtan Chanting in America

My article on kirtan chanting for Michael Laughrin's North American Jyotish newsletter:

In the not-so-distant past, before Homeland Security measures rendered airport lobbies off-limits, the only "orange alerts" to which weary travelers were subjected were gatherings of young people in saffron robes handing out tracts and chanting the names of Hindu deities: "Hare Krishna, Hare Krishna, Krishna Krishna, Hare Hare." Back in the 1970's, the so-called Hare Krishnas raised ecstatic voices and "kundalinis" with their intoxicating drumbeats, encouraging all within earshot to turn their minds to God...
Photo of Krishna Das courtesy of KD

Monday, September 1, 2008

Beyond Kumbaya

When Lara Mendel takes the stage at the Mosaic Project’s 500-person fund-raiser at the Berkeley Marina, the room has the feel of a concert at the Fillmore. Amid thunderous applause, the executive director of this unique Bay Area camp speaks in inner-city cadences and with phrases peppered with “y’alls” to deliver the salient message of her program as articulated by poet Audre Lorde: “It’s not our differences that divide us. It is our inability to recognize, accept and celebrate these differences.”

Mendel leads the audience in an exercise called “Popcorn, Firecracker, Toast,” inviting the crowd to “pop up” if they’ve ever been subjected to any of a litany of discriminations, whether it’s because of race, ethnicity, class, gender, religion, sexual orientation, disability, for wearing glasses or braces, for the way they talk or the shape of their body. “Pop up if someone ever hurt you and you have been too afraid to say anything about it,” says Mendel. “Pop up if you’ve ever stood by and watched while someone else was hurt and did nothing.”

(Photo by Brian Cuellar)

Read the entire story:

Sunday, June 8, 2008

Sunday, June 1, 2008

Arts and Crafts Fare: East Bay Monthly

Wednesday, April 30, 2008

Not All Black and White

Bedrooms," SF photographer Andrew Conway-McClintock's new one-man exhibit, opens May 2nd at the Bluesix Acoustic Room in the Mission. The show reveals a series of eighteen 20x20 color portraits taken in the bedrooms of people he describes as “artist/alternative youth.” Unlike similarly-themed images by (for example) photographer Adrienne Salinger, whose work has sometimes been branded as exploitative, Conway-McClintock portrays his subjects in an almost reverential light. “I give them respect and let them own the space,” he explains, “it’s more about the interaction between us...the actual shoot is an experience in itself... a conversation.”

Tuesday, April 1, 2008