Launch of 2017 Poetry Jukebox
February 22, 2017 @ 7:00 pm - 9:00 pm
Wednesday, February 22 / 7 PM / Free
Opening reception with the artists and poets as well as a reading by contributors Bob Holman, Hettie Jones, Camille Rankine, David Henderson, Tommy Pico, and more.
Presented by Howl! Happening: An Arturo Vega Project in association with Bowery Arts + Science and the Czech Board of Tourism.
The words and voices of dynamic and outspoken writers come to life at the launch of the new lineup for the Poetry Jukebox, an interactive public art project. Just push a button and hear well-known and up-and-coming young wordsmiths perform their works in the open, outdoor ambiance of the East Village. The Poetry Jukebox is located on Extra Place directly next to Howl! Happening Gallery (6 East 1st Street between Bowery and 2nd Avenue).
For 2017, we celebrate the intersectionality and diversity of our contemporary culture. Writers across generations, nationalities, races, and orientations have contributed their voices as a collective response to foster dialogue, social justice, and respect. The jukebox will feature almost two dozen writers across the American poetic spectrum including Eileen Myles, Paul Muldoon, Bob Holman, and Claudia Rankine; rising stars Tommy Pico, Dorothea Lasky, and Lauren Hunter; outspoken slam poets like Mahogany L Brown and Beau Sia; 2016 National Book Award winner Daniel Borzutzky; Jack Kerouac School of Disembodied Poetics at Naropa University co-founder Anne Waldman; as well as voices of the Umbra movement Steve Cannon and David Henderson.
The Poetry Jukebox was created by coffeehouse owner Ondřej Kobza and cultural manager Michaela Hečková of the Czech Republic as part of Piána na ulici, (Pianos on the Streets), an ongoing project which focuses on the animation of public spaces. Pianos on the Street deploys over a hundred pianos, chess tables, and jukeboxes on the streets, in squares and parks around the globe to make cities more livable, poetic and playful. Versions of the Poetry Jukebox have been installed in Prague, Kiev, London, Brighton, and Venice; this is the first and heretofore only North American Poetry Jukebox.
“We at Czech Tourism promote traveling to the Czech Republic based on the idea that the greatest pleasure of travel comes from connecting with people and cultures through authentic experiences,” says Jiří Dužár. “And that’s exactly what the Poetry Jukebox was made for. We can’t be more proud to be a part of the installation that speaks the values we hold dear to such a culturally diverse audience here in New York City.”
In 2016, the Poetry Jukebox showcased the Beats during Howl! Happening’s Beat and Beyond festival, and during the holidays we featured a “punk” line up of original 70s CBGB stars doing their inimitable renditions of Xmas songs.
2017 Poetry Jukebox Contributors:
Mahogany L Browne