Artist Carrie Mae Weems joins Rail Editor-at-Large Paul D. Miller for a conversation. We conclude with a poetry reading from Joy Priest.
Carrie Mae Weems
(b. 1953 Portland, OR; lives and works in Syracuse, NY) is widely renowned as one of the most influential contemporary American artists living today. Over the course of nearly four decades, Weems has developed a complex body of work employing text, fabric, audio, digital images, installation, and video, but she is most celebrated as a photographer. Activism is central to Weems’ practice, which investigates race, family relationships, cultural identity, sexism, class, political systems, and the consequences of power. Over the last 30 years of her prolific career, Weems has been consistently ahead of her time and an ongoing presence in contemporary culture.
Paul D. Miller, aka DJ Spooky
Paul D. Miller, aka DJ Spooky, is a composer, multimedia artist, and writer whose work immerses audiences in a blend of genres, global culture, and environmental and social issues. Miller has collaborated with an array of recording artists, including Metallica, Chuck D, Steve Reich, and Yoko Ono. His 2018 album, DJ Spooky Presents: Phantom Dancehall, debuted at #3 on Billboard Reggae.
The Rail has a tradition of ending our conversations with a poem, and we’re fortunate to have Joy Priest reading.
Author of Horsepower (Pitt Poetry Series, 2020) Joy Priest is the recipient of a 2021 National Endowment for the Arts fellowship and a 2019-2020 Fine Arts Work Center fellowship, as well as the Stanley Kunitz Memorial Prize. Her poems have appeared in the Academy of American Poets’ Poem-a-Day series, The Atlantic, Callaloo, Gulf Coast, and the Virginia Quarterly Review, among others. Her essays have appeared in The Bitter Southerner, Poets & Writers, ESPN, and The Undefeated. Her work has been anthologized in Breakbeat Poets: New American Poetry in the Age of Hip-Hop, A Measure of Belonging: Writers of Color on the New American South, and Best New Poets 2014, 2016 and 2019. Joy is currently editing an anthology of Louisville poets, forthcoming from Sarabande Books.