Picture Room and Esopus Presents: Flagettes by Paolo Arao and Poetry Reading by Highland, Buccieri, and Clark

To coincide with the launch of Esopus’ 25th issue, Picture Room will exhibit Paolo Arao’s series Flagettes. The unique fabric collages debuted in this issue of Esopus. Arao began the Flagettes series while on a residency at The Vermont Studio Center this past January 2018. On the series, Arao says, “I am experimenting with ways in which to explore the elastic and open-ended concept of queerness through sewn paintings, fabric collage, and textile constructions… My ongoing series of fabric collages appear to be mirror images of each other, but upon closer inspection subtle differences emerge between the pair. They question one’s perception while also addressing ideas of sameness and difference. I lovingly refer to them as my “same-sex” diptychs.”

The arts annual Esopus is published by The Esopus Foundation Ltd., a 501(c)(3) not-for-profit organization incorporated in New York State in 2003 with the mission of providing an unmediated forum through which artists, writers, musicians, and other creative people can make a direct connection with the general public. Read more about Paolo Arao's feature in ESOPUS 25: https://www.esopus.org/contents/view/398

Paolo Arao (b. 1977, Manila, Philippines) received his BFA in Painting and Printmaking from Virginia Commonwealth University (1999). He was a participant at the Skowhegan School of Painting and Sculpture in Maine (2000). He has shown his work in numerous group exhibitions both nationally and internationally and has presented solo exhibitions at Franklin Artworks in Minneapolis, MN (2010) and Jeff Bailey Gallery in NYC (2008, 2006, 2004). Arao has been awarded residencies at The Studios at MASS MoCA (2018), The Vermont Studio Center (2018) and the Fire Island Artist Residency (2016). He was a recipient of an Artist Fellowship in Drawing from The New York Foundation for the Arts (2005). His work has been published in New American Paintings (2018), Maake Magazine (2018) and Esopus (2018). He currently lives and works in Brooklyn, NY.

Suzanne Highland is a writer, teacher, queerdo, and native of Florida currently living in Queens. She has a BA from Florida State University and an MFA from Hunter College, where she received the Miriam Weinberg Richter Memorial Award. She has also been awarded fellowships or prizes from the Constance Saltonstall Foundation for the Arts, the Community of Writers at Squaw Valley, and Vermont Studio Center, and her poetry has been published or is forthcoming in Yalobusha Review, Cosmonauts Avenue, Bone Bouquet, No, Dear, and LEVELER. A few times a year she hosts Culture Club NYC, a multidisciplinary reading and art share, which you should all come to and be a part of.

Laura Buccieri is the author of, on being mistaken (PANK Books, 2018). You can find her forthcoming and most recent work in Cosmonauts Avenue, Metatron, Prelude, Lambda Literary, Word Riot, Apogee, and elsewhere. She is the Publicist at Copper Canyon Press & lives in NYC— and online at laurabuccieri.com.

Lauren Clark's first collection of poems, Music for a Wedding, was selected by Pulitzer Prize-winner Vijay Seshadri for the 2016 AWP Donald Hall Prize in Poetry and was published by the University of Pittsburgh Press in the fall of 2017. Lauren holds BA in Classics from Oberlin College and an MFA in Poetry from the University of Michigan, where they were the recipient of two Zell Fellowships and a Civitas Fellowship. Their work was awarded first place in the Graduate Poetry division of the Hopwood Awards, as well as the Theodore Roethke Prize for long poetic sequence and the the Michael R. Gutterman Prize for a poem exemplifying the new, the unusual, and the radical. They have been the recipient of two Academy of American Poets Prizes, as well as scholarships from the Sewanee Writers Conference and the New York State Summer Writers Institute. As a Civitas Fellow, they served as an InsideOut Literary Arts Writer-in-Residence in Detroit Public Schools for two years.

May 30th 2018