Sunday, January 31, 2016

This just in from Takis at AthensArt

I have received this from Takis at AthensArt:
"Dearest Friends,
Please, if you agree, you could sing in the following link, within the next 24 hours, for the Peace Nobel Prize to be given to the population of the Greek islands who, in these difficult times for our country, save and support thousands of refugees, mainly from Syria...
Thank you in advance... Always with Love and Friendship, yours Takis"

Monday, January 25, 2016

Support artists impacted by homelessness!

Check this worthy project to support artists impacted by homelessness out! 
Rory White, Founding Artist of Art Contiuum with part of his painting, "Xochitl of God", razorwire in foreground.

IMMEDIATE FUNDS NEEDED  ... A Masters Program for Artists Impacted by

Homelessness. Serving formerly (and some currently) homeless, artists and other amazingly deserving human beings in the greater Los Angeles Area.
     ART CONTINUUM SERVES ARTISTS ON THE EDGE...The project for15 years has also modeled its dynamic through website and film, nationally. The members' work has earned Annenberg, Frederick Weisman, and Aileen Getty grants over the years.  The founding artist-in-residence, myself Rory White, was given the Eli Lilly Welcome Back Award's one time only "Person of the Decade Award" in 2008. All funds for this campaign will be managed by independent consultant Beth Quayle LMFT.
     Currently the project desperately needs funds for both continued storage of its equipment pending renting a new studio, other operating costs including oil paint, brushes, canvas, archival printing supplies, and funds to secure a new studio space. The project has had radical impact on the lives and artwork of the very worthy, but oft vulnerable, artist members served.  Your donations will help their lives immensely in the continuity of their artwork and resultant esteem and life and recovery strengthening dynamics stemming from this involvment, and the powers of human self actualization inherent to the creative arts.      "Your help at this time will be so immensely helpful to themselves, their hearts, their families, and my own heart and life and the continuity of my work." Rory White 

     Reference links for Project and Founder:
Personal Facebook Page

New Short Story by Brooklyn Writer, B. E. Stock

Image from 

A January Treat!
It is my great pleasure to present a short story to you by my friend and creative colleague, B.E. Stock, who I have known for many years.  I first met B.E. Stock at the Old Stone House in Park Slope, Brooklyn, where we both read our works at a reading for Brooklyn poets. There, I purchased her book, Collected Poems, which I have enjoyed ever since. B.E. Stock studied poetry and fiction writing at Bread Loaf, Sarah Lawrence College, the Brooklyn Poetry Circle with Alfred Dorn, The West Chester Form and Narrative Conference, and Colrain. She is widely published in magazines and websites such as Blue Unicorn. Orbis, The Lyric, Poetry Porch, Lalitamba, Utmost Christian Writers, and Catholic World, and has curated and featured in poetry readings in Manhattan and Brooklyn, New York.  B. E. Stock has self-published at various times since 1976, and her book and chapbooks are available. Please e-mail for details.  B. E. Stock writes: "I am attaching a little tale which is based on something that allegedly made the newspapers, though I never saw the article." 


Peter had wanted to talk to Pop for years, but the phone would ring and ring. Letters were not answered by Pop or Mom, though they were not returned. It all seemed remote from here, the screaming arguments about his drinking, being kicked out and spending the night with Karl from the bar, who molested him, Tina’s abortion. Now he had lucked into sales management, though he had to go to Denver. He was happy with Louise, and the difficult pregnancy was over, and they had Peter Junior.

Finally he reached Mom. It took a few minutes before she realized who he was, then she cried. When he talked about coming up to visit, she said she was too tired to cook, and Pop wasn’t up to visitors. He assured her they would take her out and find a place to stay. Then she talked about when he was little, and when Katie died, and he realized she might be out of it. When she hung up without saying goodbye, Peter decided to just go there. Something was not right.

Louise went to stay with her old friends the Larsons, and Peter kept calling and listening to little Peter’s gurgling and peeping every few hours on the long train trip to Grand Central. By the time he got there, everyone in the car knew he was a first time Dad. He switched to the S and took the R train all the way out to Bay Ridge. It would be nice to see the old neighborhood, though he supposed it had changed a lot.
The lack of sky hit him when he got out of the subway at 77th. The church there had gone Korean, one of the funeral homes was gone, there were more clinics than he remembered. But the attached brick houses on the side street looked the same. He
went to the house, climbed the outside stairs, rang the bell. No answer. He took out the key, which he still had; the lock had been changed. His debit card forced the door open. No noise of a person inside, yet he was sure someone was there.

Foyer, living room, kitchen, everything the same but faded, stained, worn out. He used the bathroom, then lumbered past Katie’s room. There was the last picture of her as a teenager, before the accident. Because he knew she had been killed, her eyes hade a sad, warning expression. But he also smelled something. His room was unchanged, complete with athletic trophies and a corny confirmation picture. The smell had to come from the master bedroom in back. Cautiously, Peter opened the door – and caught his breath. The bed had not been made, but there was something under the quilt, on the side of the bed where Mom had not slept. He forced himself to move the quilt over. And there, on the other side, was a skeleton. Pop.

He sat on the rocking chair by the window, trembling. Then he realized he had little time before Mom would return, so he crept to the night table, picked up the phone, put it down, picked up again, dialed 911. “I just found my father’s bones in my parents’ bed. My mother is out.”

“Name? Address?”

He could not hear his own voice. He put the phone down and sat on the rocker again, staring at the landscape on the wall. A beach with shells on the sand, blue green water, a sail in the distance.

The wail of a shopping cart, the sound of it banging up the stairs, the gasp, the murmur, “O my God, what is this, there’s nothing here to be taken.”

He made himself get up and go to the door and open it.

“Peter! You came!”

“Mom. I found him.”

They heard the siren, and she said only, “I needed the Social Security,” and took her cart back down the stairs. She headed toward Fifth Avenue, but he pointed her out to the cops, and they gently escorted her back and placed her in a car. They let Peter put the food away before getting into another car. He explained that he needed to get back to his wife and new-born son in Denver. The non-driving cop advised him to call his wife from the precinct. He might be here for a while.

Poems by B. E. Stock on this blog:

Monday, January 11, 2016

Greece’s two currencies – Project Syndicate Op-Ed

For an interesting read and discussion following please see:

"Greece’s Two Currencies"

ATHENS – "Imagine a depositor in the US state of Arizona being permitted to withdraw only small amounts of cash weekly and facing restrictions on how much money he or she could wire to a bank account in California. Such capital controls, if they ever came about, would spell the end of the dollar as a single currency, because such constraints are utterly incompatible with a monetary union."

"Greece today (and Cyprus before it) offers a case study of how capital controls bifurcate a currency and distort business incentives. The process is straightforward. Once euro deposits are imprisoned within a national banking system, the currency essentially splits in two: bank euros (BE) and paper, or free, euros (FE). Suddenly, an informal exchange rate between the two currencies emerges."
"Consider a Greek depositor keen to convert a large sum of BE into FE (say, to pay for medical expenses abroad, or to repay a company debt to a non-Greek entity). Assuming such depositors find FE holders willing to purchase their BE, a substantial BE-FE exchange rate emerges, varying with the size of the transaction, BE holders’ relative impatience, and the expected duration of capital controls.....(edit) " (Yanis Varoufakis)

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Friday, January 8, 2016

“Gowanus: Brooklyn’s Curious Canal,” reviewed in the New York Times!

Congratulations to fellow community activist, and fellow Gowanus Canal CAG member, 
Joseph Alexiou, 
whose book on the Gowanus Canal, 
“Gowanus: Brooklyn’s Curious Canal,”
was just reviewed in the NY Times!
Way to go Joseph!

Above: The Gowanus Canal flooding during Huricane Sandy Digital Photo c. Triada Samaras 2013

And please see my Gowanus Canal Hurricane Sandy photos and other items at:

Tuesday, January 5, 2016

Poem from Fifth Grade

It is not often I come across work done in my childhood.  However, I encountered this poem I wrote in 5th grade recently.  I had not seen or remembered this poem for over 45 years. 

I am struck by my then wisdom and maturity, and by the fact that I can now remember writing it, after all these years, and the recent and vigorous jolt to my memory.  I remember how confident I felt at that stage of my life and how wonderful that was. And how that feeling vanished later.  But maybe it could return now, in a modified version?  Time will tell.

I guess it is no wonder I like working with students in my present life.  I have always felt they are capable of expressing themselves, whether with visual art or with words, in ways that are light-years ahead of their numerical age, and perhaps of the adults that surround them.


I have to live with myself and so,
I want to be fit for myself to know,
I want to be able as days go by,
Always to look myself straight in the eye.
I don't want to stand with the setting sun,
And hate myself for the things I've done.

I never can hide myself from me,
I see what others may never see,
I know what others may never know,
I never can fool myself and so,
Whatever happens I want to be,
Self-respecting and conscience free.

Tria (Triada) Samaras
c. 1968/2016

Monday, January 4, 2016

The Rockies

We challenge ourselves upwards into the unknown even as we feel the safety of the plains. It is a paradox that even as we feel our calm and stable center we recognize the need for uncomfortability and instability.  After a visually and emotionally startling trip to the Denver a year and a half ago, I wrote this poem:

Light Land Looming

Land in limitless light

Looms level with heaven

Rewards us with reason

Sprawling and safe

A mountain emerges

Spoiling serenity,

Pointy lines draw our spellbound

Eyes uphill

To a cold place where the

Wind blows without logic,

Up and down the peak in

Excessive screams

And we do not resist

But are sucked willingly

To the summit, to our

Nightmares where we

Are hung upon hazy

Heights hypnotized by the

Upward-bound journey to

Holding nothing.

c. Triada Samaras 2016

Check out the STEAM blog I create on an on-going basis for my Geraldine R. Dodge funded Art (STEAM) Professor in Residence work in Paterson, NH. I also co-write the posts with Dodge grant co-ordinator, Dina Scacchetti...

Thursday, December 17, 2015

Radial Symmetry and Origami Square Creations at SOIT

At the School of Information Technology, students in Mrs. Simon's art classes studied radial symmetry, color theory, and origami to create original art works from folded paper.

First students observed the use of radial symmetry and color in contemporary art, viewing works by Portia Munson who creates dazzling photographs of flowers using radial symmetry and a skillful use of composition and color theory. 
Above:  Photographs by Contemporary Artist Portia Munson

Origami Lotus Flower LINK
Students learned about Origami (折り紙,) from ori meaning "folding", and kami meaning "paper”: the art of paper folding, which is often associated with Japanese culture.  They learned that in origami, the goal is to transform a flat square of paper into a finished sculpture through precisely planned and executed folding techniques. Next, Ms. Simon's students researched the differences between formal balance, symmetrical balance, informal balance, and radial symmetry. Finally, they were ready to begin their art creations.  They were challenged to work within certain parameters:  they had to use 3 inch by 3 inch squares, and they could only use white and three colors.

Students developed their own folding methods and their own compositions, as in the examples at the right and below.  As in Portia Munson's works, students used a completely black background to add dramatic contrast to the other colors.
The cumulative effect of the students' work was magnificent!

In the course of this lesson students acquired an extensive new vocabulary: origami, formal balance, symmetrical balance, informal balance, radial symmetry, bilateral symmetry, fulcrum, space, pattern, aesthetics, contemporary art.