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curd majesty

Internet, SoundCloud, 2016

Most of the human sounds that we hear have evolved as communication signals that transfer useful information from one individual to others of the same cultural group. Some sounds, such as the alarm calls made when a person swoops at a predator, have obvious effects on other animals as well. They irritate the predator, and, at the same time, attract other kinds of humans that join in the effort to drive the predator away. Curd Majesty comes from the banks of the Green River bringing with them the sweet melodies and essential anti-predator noises.

You can find field recordings on SoundCould.

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Writer in Residence at Necessary Fiction

 

Internet, Necessary Fiction Writer-in-Resident, August 2010 (collage by Taibi Mastelse)

Writer in Residence

August 2010

presented by Necessary Fiction

As writer in Residence at Necessary Fiction for the entire month of August 2010, Matt Briggs posted a new piece of fiction every day (more or less). He published the entire new edition of his first book, a novel in linked stories, The Remains of River Names, as well as a five part colloboration with Brooklyn artist, Taibi Mastelse.

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PowerPoint Off

On 11.18.2008 at the Jewel Box Theater Matt Briggs and Doug Nufer faced off.

Jewel Box Theater, Seattle, 11.18.2008

PowerPoint Off

November 18th 2008

presented by Final State Press
An audio visual duel to the death between a hippie and a business man.

On November 18th, 2008 at 7:30 PM at the Jewel Box Theater in Belltown (free of charge), Matt Briggs and Doug Nufer presented their “roadmap” for the future of the community writing organization Richard Hugo House. Neither is affiliated with the organization. And neither are you. Present your own vision of the future at powerpointoff.blogspot.com or come to the party to heckle, cheer, and consider: is a community writing center a halfway house or school?

Links

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Roethke Readings

ACT, Seattle, August 2007

Presented by ACT and Eleventh Hour Productions

The Roethke Readings, a new event inspired by the early 20th-century nightclub, Cabaret Voltaire. The readings took place after First Class on August 9, 16 and 23 at 9:00 p.m., and on August 3, 4, 11, 18 and 25 at 9:30 p.m. From Roethke-inspired compositions by Ken Benshoof, former UW faculty member and Kronos Quartet composer, to new poetry from Kary Wayson, Rebecca Hoogs, Jennifer Borges Foster, J. W. Marshall, Joshua Marie Wilkinson, Vis-á-Vis Society and others, to prose by Rebecca Brown, Matt Briggs, Jonathan Crimmins and Trisha Ready, the cabaret will be an exuberant celebration of Roethke’s literary legacy.

Links

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Take the Cake

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Celebrating Stranger Genius Award Winners 2003-2006

November 2 – December 14, 2006

presented by ArtPatch and The Henry Gallery

After hosting the 4th Annual Stranger Genius Awards Ceremony, Saturday, October 21 in the galleries, ArtPatch and the Henry Art Gallery present a survey of past and present Genius Award recipients. This exhibition recognizes the award’s role in celebrating artists working in Seattle, and their numerous contributions to our creative community. This year’s awardees—Annie Han and Daniel Mihalyo (collectively known as Lead Pencil Studio) for visual art; On the Boards for organization; Jonathan Raban for writing; James Longley for film, and scenic designer Jennifer Zeyl for theater, join past “geniuses,” including visual artists Victoria Haven, Susan Robb, and SuttonBeresCuller, writers Rebecca Brown, Matt Briggs, and John Olson, performers Gabriel Barron, Sarah Rudinoff, and Chris Jeffries, filmmakers Web Crowell, David Russo, and Michael Seiwerath, and organizations Vital 5, Velocity Dance Center, Seattle School, and The Frye Art Museum. ArtPatch and the Henry present Take the Cake with the curatorial expertise of Sara Krajewski (Henry Art Gallery: Visual Arts), Lane Czaplinski (On the Boards: Theater), Peter Lucas (Northwest Film Forum, Cinema Seattle: Film), Eric Fredericksen (Western Bridge: Organizations), and Matthew Stadler (Clear Cut Press, Nest Magazine, Public Speakers, The Back Room: Literature).

Links

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Trapdoor 62: The Dream Interpretation Panel

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Trapdoor 62: The Dream Interpretation Panel

October 2, 2005, July 22, 2006, and September 4, 2006

presented by The Po Show and The Fisher Ensemble

Using only words, an Indian harmonium, and a sonabulist, a panel of writers and musicians interpreted the meanings of the audience’s dreams. All attendees received a dream to be interpreted at the door, or could use their own dream. The ongoing presentation experienced periodic disruptions and outbursts. The 2006 shows were performed by Denis Johnson (pictured), Stacey Levine, Matt Briggs, Garrett Fisher, David Stutz, Anna Maria Hong, Amy Schrader, Maggie Santolla, Erik Benson, and Shannon Borg. Jeannette Allée moderated.

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Unassociated Writers Conference

Western Front, Vancouver BC, 2005

Presented by Clear Cut Press and Western Front

On April 2nd, more than 300 writers, readers and producers of independent literature gathered in the space of unassociation during the day to read, listen, talk, bounce on the inflatable bouncy, drink and eat yummy toasties. The organizers of the dance party had no idea how many people would arrive to experience the pleasures of unassociation. The event was not addressed by the regional media. In fact, Terminal City, the alternative weekly in Vancouver running opposite the older and more staid weekly, The George Straight, was going to run some preview manifestos/articles (to be posted here shortly) on the conference. But rather than run them, the overseers of Terminal City axed the entire book section and replaced it with a two-page spread about strap-ons. Perhaps not a bad thing, but still, an indication of the difficulty of classifying the work and play that would take place on April 2nd.

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Resuscitating Utopia

Resuscitating Utopia, Richard Hugo House, 2005

Contemporary Music, Literature, and Art from the Oregon Territory
Spring 2005
Presented by Richard Hugo House, 4 Culture, and Allen Foundation For the Arts.

In the spring of 2005, I presented a series of performances addressing the idea of utopia as reflected in Northwest Art. In March, writer Rebecca Brown collaborated with visual artist Nancy Kiefer to look at the Northwest Mystic Painters. In April, the series looked at the communal experiments of the 1960s with a utopian demonstration and reading by former Seattleites Novella Carpenter (a survivor of an Idaho hippie childhood) and Raymond Mungo, whose memoir, Total Loss Farm was described recently in The New York Times as “the best, and surely the woolliest, book written about that era’s communal living and back-to-the-land movements.” In May, Rich Jensen a writer and musician who has been involved in a number of utopian enterprises, collaborated with Phil Elverum, a musician from Anacortes who has recorded music as The Microphones and Mount Eerie.

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Writers on Work

Writers on Work, Richard Hugo House 2004

Writers on Work
Spring 2004
Presented by Richard Hugo House

Writers on Work celebrated labor vital to the life of Seattle. Poet Lyn Coffin translated the voices YMCA case reports, performance artist Stokley Towles road in a North Precinct squad car & fabulist Bret Fetzer listened to an ambulance siren. Three jobs: Social Work, Police Work, Emergency Medical Response. Three nights. Writers on Work reading teamed professional writers with community members whose jobs are integral to the operation and function of our city. The series provided a connection between practicing writers and professionals and looked to ways that Hugo House, as a community resource center, could be used and be of use to anyone. Each writer-worker pair created a reflective nonfiction piece about work performed in the Hugo House Cabaret.

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Rendezvous Reading Series

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Rendezvous Reading Series

2001 – 2004 (series lasted @1990-2004)

presented by discounted space at The Jewel Box, the Northwest Film Forum, and Richard Hugo House, among others over the years

The Rendezvous Reading Series was founded in the early 1990s by Frances McCue and Jan Wallace to create a bridge between the grassroots poetry scene at venues such as the Red Sky Poetry Theater and the University of Washington’s academic circuit. Novelist Matthew Stadler joined as a curator in 1992. For most of the life of the series, The Rendezvous Reading took place in the Rendezvous Tavern Jewelbox Theater. A well known writer would read with an “emerging” local writer. Readers included James Purdy, Robert Gluck, Lynn Emanuel, Tom Spanbauer, and Mark Doty. In 1998, the series passed to Novella Carpenter, Paula Gilovich, and Rachel Kessler and moved for a time to Northwest Film Forum’s Little Theater. There readings moved to thematic readings including a reading of JT Leroy’s first collection of stories. In 2001, when Paula left for Chicago, Novella for Oakland, and Rachel for The Typing Explosion, the series passed to me where I presented authors such as Charles d’Ambrosio, Rebecca Brown, Cynthia Hartwig, Michael Byers, and Gary Lutz. The series ended in the January 2004 when I began working on Writers on Work at Richard Hugo House.

Novella, Paula, and Rachel published an anthology including work from many of the local contributors to the series in 2002, The Rendezvous Reader: Northwest Writing, which along with the anthologies Clear-Cut edited by Nico Vassilakis and Good To Go edited by Daran Lud, Alice Wheeler, and Jim Jones provides a broad overview of fiction and poetry produced in Seattle in the 1990s.

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