Gholar has a provided missive for a new way to write about the creative life, art-making and (most specifically) Black women navigating those historically troubled waters for all talents.
Gholar's display of glorious art and life-giving paintings, completed across five years, come with grown woman commentary about what it took to see each piece through. In wisdom, she snakes the darkest corners of life- grief, breakups, economic peril- in a chronology of change and chaos where blank canvas was the steadiest hold.
Every time I have declared the internet a graver impediment than asset to arts and culture, something comes along to renew my faith I will be wrong. That something came out of inspiration to commemorate Juneteenth with a listen to a live performance of Tyehimba Jess's Pulitzer Prize-winning poetry collection OLIO, transformed to an original production of Audible.
You'd be correct to expect this story of a young Renaissance woman's fantasy trip, to live like her iconic Black American idols, to be sexy and to weave in Josephine Baker. The novel's heroine goes to Paris in search of Baldwin and finds jazz, interracial love and the freelance hustler life...
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One book with four different covers is just one aspect of the special story and brilliance behind 'A Bitter Pill to Swallow', just released from Blurb Books as the debut novel from writer and visual artist Tiffany Gholar. 'A Bitter Pill to Swallow' is a literal and figurative testimony of perseverance, triumph and concern for humanity in a novel debut more than twenty years in the making.
When Weems received a 2013 MacArthur Genius Grant and a solo exhibit of her work opened at the Guggenheim in New York City in 2014, she was in her sixties. She has not had an orthodox career.