PHOTOS BY BRADLEY LEACH
Dancer, writer, and director Weléla Mar Kindred radiates peace and warmth. Her presence is like a hug. I met her in Paris a few years ago, and my life has been all the sweeter because of our meeting. Last year I invited her to spend a week with me in a mini-residency. Each morning I woke to gentle music, and she would make me tea and lead me in quiet morning rituals. I guess it was I who benefited from the residency. Weléla is the choreographer and artistic director for LVMB (pronounced LAMB), a sensual dance theater “where performers experiment with conceptual ideologies and explore the human story,” and during our tea-sharing, she taught me a lot about her life as an African-American woman in France. She opened up my imagination and introduced me to new and challenging ideas (and to the poetry of Yasiin Bey). Before she left Paris, we shot a photo series with Bradley Leach. Since then Culture Keeper contributor Linda Swan has spent time formally interviewing Weléla, the fruit of which we’ll publish next week.
-- Jonathan Randall Grant, Culture Keeper Creative Director
Bradley Leach is a Paris-based narrative and fashion photographer and videographer with a fetish for the ‘80s-‘90s, 35mm film, and grunge lifestyle. His photos often portray an emphasized sense of vibrant colors and utilize harsh, on-camera flash to achieve a playfully rebellious result.
STORY AND PHOTOS BY NIHAB RAHMAN
Our View From Here series is back as Nihab Rahman takes us inside a little moment of Bangladeshi life.
Near Chowfol-Dondi Bridge in Khuruskhul, Cox’s Bazar, Bangladesh, Ziyaul Haque, 21 years old, repairs his five-year-old boat for its next destination, which is Sundarbans, the only mangrove forest in Bangladesh.
POEM AND IMAGES BY LORI LANDAU
A poem by Lori Landau. Photograph and painting by Lori too.
STORY AND PHOTOS BY MEGAN FINCK AND MIKE PLUNKETT
La caminata de Megan Finck y Mike Plunkett a una finca de café en Colombia nos sumerge en la historia de las alianzas que han ayudado a una comunidad a transformar su pasado sórdido en un presente floreciente que marca un futuro lleno de esperanza.
Megan Finck and Mike Plunkett’s hike to a Colombian coffee farm plunges us into a story of the partnerships that have helped a community transform its sordid past into a flourishing present that marks out a hopeful future.
We're taking a little summer break this month because even our dear website (and her staff) needs a little R&R. But don't despair! We'll be back on September 3 (mark your calendars?!) with fascinating new fare.
PHOTOGRAPH BY JC JOHNSON & STORY BY KAMI L. RICE
A real life scene turned miniature through the magic of photography has inspired a tiny fictional tale that invites you to discover the other stories hiding in this image. Explore the world with us and let your imagination play along as you do.
STORY BY HÉLÈNE SCHWITZER-BORGIALLO
ENGLISH TRANSLATION BY KAMI L. RICE
French academic Hélène Schwitzer-Borgiallo reports for us this week on innovative projects undertaken by a duo of English playwrights who are bringing together groups of people who don’t normally get to meet each other.
Mettre sa créativité au service de la rencontre des cultures : voilà l’objectif du duo de dramaturges anglais dont nous parle cette semaine Hélène Schwitzer-Borgiallo, enseignante à l’Université Paris 8.
STORY BY HEATHER M. SURLS
Heather Surls introduces us to a young designer who has found unexpected inspiration back home in Jordan—both design inspiration and inspiration in terms of whom she employs.
STORY AND PHOTOS BY ARMON A. MEANS
The traditional ideal of community structure was rooted in individuals’ formation of living groups derived from families and built through doing apprenticeships, seeking education, and returning to or remaining near the area where one was raised (generally within a 20-mile radius). In contemporary modernized society this ideal has become a relic as individuals no longer feel the need to remain near their place of birth. In addition, every year immigration and social change lead influxes of people to move to or within North America. Armon A. Means delves into resulting questions of individual and societal identity through his latest road trip photographic project.
POEM BY E. AMATO. TRANSLATED TO FRENCH BY CATHERINE S. WEBSTER. IMAGES BY JOANNA WINOGRAD.
A poem by E. Amato from her book Will Travel. Inspiration found in Essaouira, Morocco.