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New KTCO: Jordanna Kalman

This week on Keep the Channel Open, I'm talking with photographer Jordanna Kalman. Jordanna’s work explores loneliness, femininity and individuality, and the images are highly personal. In her series Little Romances, she rephotographs prints of earlier images of hers which had been stolen and misused. By considering the prints as objects and adding new elements, she creates a new narrative, examining the anxieties of being a woman and creating a form of protection for the image. In our conversation we discussed prints as still-life subjects, what anger can accomplish, and our mutual dislike of “mean” photography. Then in the second segment we discussed a recent Instagram dust-up between two photographers, and how it’s relevant to our larger society.

Here are some links where you can listen to the episode:

You can also listen to the full episode and find show notes and a transcript at the episode page on the KTCO website.

You can purchase a copy of Jordanna's Little Romances book as well as select prints at her BigCartel shop.

New KTCO: KTCO Book Club - The True Deceiver (with Alyssa Harad)

On this week's episode, the KTCO Book Club returns with a conversation with writer Alyssa Harad about Tove Jansson's 1982 novel The True Deceiver. Despite the slimness of the volume, Jansson’s novel yet contains a  surprising degree of depth and complexity, not to mention psychological  tension, in a story that challenges the reader to consider the nature of  truth, honesty, and different forms of deception.

Here are some links to where you can listen to the episode:

You can also listen to the full episode and find show notes and a transcript at the episode page at the KTCO website.

You can purchase copies of The True Deceiver at your local independent bookstore, or via bookshop.org. If you'd like to help support Alyssa's work, purchase a copy of her memoir, Coming to My Senses, and leave a review via GoodReads.

New KTCO: Maggie Smith

This week on Keep the Channel Open, I'm pleased to welcome poet Maggie Smith back to the show! Maggie’s new book Keep Moving: Notes on Loss, Creativity, and Change was born out of a difficult life change; it both discusses and is an example of resilience and hope in the face of an unknown future. In our conversation, we talked about the book’s origins in a series of social media notes-to-self, about becoming an essayist after having been a poet for so long, and about finding agency through language. Then for the second segment, we talked about community and connection via social media.

Here are some links where you can listen to the episode:

You can also listen to the full episode and find show notes and a transcript at the episode page at the KTCO website.

You can purchase copies of Keep Moving at your local independent bookstore, or via bookshop.org. If you'd like to help support Maggie's work, consider leaving a review of Keep Moving on Goodreads.

New KTCO: KTCO Book Club - Human Archipelago (with David Naimon)

For this week's show I'm pleased to introduce a new feature: the KTCO Book Club! From time to time I will be inviting writers, critics, and friends of the show to pick a book that we can discuss on the show. In this inaugural KTCO Book Club episode I’m joined by writer and podcaster David Naimon, host of the literary podcast Between the Covers. For our conversation, David selected Teju Cole and Fazal Sheikh’s hybrid photo/prose book Human Archipelago. In their collaboration, Cole’s writing and Sheikh’s images support each other in a way that expands the form of the traditional photobook and provides a potent exploration of human migration, national boundaries, imperialism, the connections between people, and our responsibilities to one another.

Here are some links to where you can listen to the episode:

You can also listen to the full episode and find show notes and a transcript at the episode page at the KTCO website.

You can purchase copies of Human Archipelago at your local independent bookstore, or via bookshop.org. If you'd like to help support David's work, subscribe to his Patreon campaign, or leave a review of Between the Covers on Apple Podcasts or Podchaser.

New KTCO: David Adjmi

This week on Keep the Channel Open, I'm talking with writer and playwright David Adjmi. In his new memoir Lot Six, David tells the story of how he found himself through art and the theater, growing up feeling like an outsider as a gay, atheist, artistic youth in a small and insular Syrian Sephardic Jewish community in Brooklyn. In our conversation, David and I discussed the craft of memoir, the process of constructing one’s own identity, and why his book isn’t structured like the typical gay narrative. Then in the second segment, we discussed how the pandemic is affecting our ability to make narratives, and how art can function as a community.

Here are some links to where you can listen to the episode:

You can also listen to the full episode and find show notes and a transcript at the episode page at the KTCO website.

You can purchase copies of Lot Six at your local independent bookstore, or via bookshop.org. If you'd like to help support David's work, leave a review of his book on Goodreads.

New KTCO: Jessica Eaton

This week on Keep the Channel Open, I'm talking with photographic artist Jessica Eaton. At first glance, the minimalist compositions in Jessica’s images might seem simple, but the process behind their creation is anything but. Using a series of color filters and a painstaking multiple exposure technique, she is able to use light to construct color. In our conversation, we discussed her photographic technique, her impulse toward iteration, and why her work is not abstract. Then in the second segment we talked about coming to big life changes during a pandemic.

Here are some links to where you can listen to the episode:

You can also listen to the full episode and find show notes and a transcript at the episode page at the KTCO website.

New KTCO: Matthew Salesses

This week on Keep the Channel Open, I'm talking with writer Matthew Salesses. Matthew’s new novel, Disappear Doppelgänger Disappear, is darkly funny, unsettling in the best way, and wholly original, the story of a Korean American man struggling simply to exist as he feels himself literally disappearing. In our conversation, Matthew and I discussed his book, the trap of the first-person perspective, and what it means to take responsibility. Then in the second segment, we talked about the meaning of love.

Here are some links to where you can listen to the episode:

You can also listen to the full episode and find show notes and a transcript at the episode page at the KTCO website.

You can purchase copies of Disappear Doppelgänger Disappear at your local independent bookstore, or via bookshop.org. If you'd like to help support Matthew's work, leave a review of his book on Goodreads or Amazon.

New KTCO: Ross Sutherland

This week on Keep the Channel Open, I'm talking with writer and podcaster Ross Sutherland. Ross’s podcast Imaginary Advice is one of my favorites in any genre. Blending poetry, essay, and audio fiction with a wonderfully experimental approach to sound design, Imaginary Advice sounds like nothing else. In our conversation, Ross and I talked about what it’s like to make a podcast without a format, how starting with form can lead to unexpected discovery, and what collaboration can open up for a project. Then in the second segment, Ross and I talked about the inherent difficulty of connecting language to bodily sensations, something that's come up in his recent (unsuccessful) attempts to learn yoga via YouTube.

Here are some links to where you can listen to the episode:

You can also listen to the full episode and find show notes and a transcript on the episode page at the KTCO website.

If you'd like to support Ross's work, you can subscribe to his Patreon campaign.

KTCO Re-run: Richard Georges

This week on Keep the Channel Open, I'm revisiting my 2018 conversation with poet Richard Georges. In his second collection of poems, Giant, Richard gave us a portrait of the BVI through landscape, through its history and its present. In our conversation, Richard and I talked about his book, the aftermath of empire in the BVI, and the relationship between poetry and myth. For the second segment, Richard talked about the particular moment that the BVI faced in the wake of Hurricane Irma.

Since we recorded this conversation, Richard has published a third collection, Epiphaneia, which won the 2020 OCM Bocas Prize for Caribbean Literature just a couple of months ago. I highly recommend picking up a copy of one of his books, which you can order from your local independent bookstore. You can also order each directly from the publisher:

Here are some links to where you can listen to the episode:

You can also listen to the full episode and find show notes and a transcript on the episode page at the KTCO website.

KTCO Re-run: Alanna Airitam

For today's episode of Keep the Channel Open, I'm re-releasing my 2018 conversation with photographer Alanna Airitam. In her series The Golden Age, Alanna makes portraits of African Americans in the style of the Dutch Realism Golden Age of painting, images full of grace and beauty representing black people in an art history context, a context from which they are all too often excluded. In our conversation we talked about that series, as well as her Being Heard project, which began as a response to seeing how different marginalized women were being excluded from the mainstream activist narrative. Then for the second segment, Alanna and I had a wide-ranging conversation about the roots of social injustice in our society.

I wanted to re-share this episode because, listening back, the things we talked about are just as relevant today as they were two years ago. These conversations turned out to be especially urgent here in the San Diego arts community, when recently a local museum's treatment of Alanna and her work showed that we still have a lot of work to do on racial equity.

Here are some links to where you can listen to the episode:

You can also listen to the full episode and find show notes and a transcript on the episode page at the KTCO website.

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