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Write Around PAM: Roy DeCarava

Writing allows us to reflect deeply on our journey, as individuals, as families, as community. This evocative photograph by Roy DeCarava has appeared in two Portland Art Museum exhibitions that each considered the meaning of journeys and transitions in very different ways, one through African American art and the Great Migration and the other through…  Read more

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Write Around PAM: Elizabeth Catlett

Elizabeth Catlett created these lithographs in honor of Margaret Walker’s seminal poem “For My People.” Rather than illustrating the poem literally, Catlett transforms Walker’s powerful words about Black experience into iconic images. Together, Catlett’s words and Walker’s text explore hope and despair, as well as the simple joys of life. Writing and visual art so…  Read more

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Write Around PAM: Neil Meitzler

Both visual art and creative writing can invite us into abstract thoughts, a chance to step away from the traditional narrative and into a different way of thinking, seeing, speaking. We invite you to spend some time in the abstract today, using this piece by Northwest painter Neil Meitzler as inspiration. “While our existence momentarily…  Read more

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Write Around PAM: Fern Coppedge

Many of us have likely gotten to know the streets we live on a bit better this year as we take walks in the neighborhood or spend time looking out our windows while we try to stay close to home and maintain social distancing. Or maybe life has shifted in a way that means our…  Read more

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Write Around PAM: Mary Adams

At two inches by two inches in diameter, this piece by Mary Adams (Mohawk, Canadian) feels quintessentially “small but mighty” and so full of intricate beauty. In these fraught days, we invite you to spend some time writing in this spirit of “small but mighty,” knowing that each of us has a mighty role to…  Read more

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Write Around PAM: Dyani White Hawk

This screenprint by Dyani White Hawk was inspired by a Plains style women’s dentalium dress. You can almost feel the ribbons, the wool, the shells, the metallic details, the hemline. Learn more about the creation of this piece and the series Takes Care of Them. Then take some time to write a bit, using something…  Read more

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Write Around PAM: Katsumata Chieko

The arrival of a new year gives us an opportunity to pause, to set intentions, to be open to the expanse of time and space all around us. This piece by Katsumata Chieko, offers a way to enter into that expanse, that openness, that empty vessel of a fresh start, while also being mindful of…  Read more

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Write Around PAM: Amanda Snyder

This has been an especially challenging year, for so many reasons. As we move toward its end, we are reminded of the importance of threshold times—spaces between what has been and what will be—and the power that can come from resting and reflecting in them. Self-portraits seem to carry this same energy, reflecting back to…  Read more

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Write Around PAM: Grandma Moses

Tomorrow marks the winter solstice and the shortest day of the year. We invite you to spend some time reflecting on and writing about this arrival of winter, using this piece from Grandma Moses as inspiration. Before or after you write, learn more about her life and work through the National Museum of Women in…  Read more

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Podcast—Write What You Know: an Interview with Author & Storyteller Charles Yu

Charles Yu is a reformed attorney whose passion for creative writing landed him a job in the writers’ room at HBO’s Westworld. That snowballed into more and more television writing jobs. But after the 2016 Presidential Election, Yu was compelled to begin a more personal writing project, the novel Interior Chinatown, a book written in screenplay format that…  Read more