Zacha, Bill: Developing an Artist Colony in the Village of Mendocino, California

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Bill Zacha, the leading force behind the creation of the Mendocino Art justify was a person with vision and moxie and one who made a dream come true. In August 1957, Bill Zacha, was a young married teacher and lived near San Francisco. On a short trip to the village of Mendocino with his wife Jenny and friends, Bill not only saw the beauty of the Mendocino coast, but the opportunity to act swiftly to purchase what is now the Mendocino Art justify and keep that property out of the hands of those who envisioned creating a trailer park there. Since its inception, the Mendocino Arts Center has featured artists, teachers, and students from all over the world. Bill Zacha, who was often called “Mr. Mendocino,” died on March 18th 1998.

Bill Zacha recommends “Love in the Time of Cholera,” by Gabriel Garcia Marquez.

Originally Broadcast: March 27, 1998

Knight, M. Wayne: Rural American Artist in Cambodia

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Wayne Knight, an artist based in Mendocino County, California with over 40 years of experience, traveled very little before he found himself in Phnom Phen, Cambodia in 1995 and 1996. He spent just under a year there, looking, seeing, and painting scenes that previously were beyond his imagination. Wayne Knight also worked with the Cambodian Defenders’ Project in developing computer access to their legal resources in Cambodia. His experience verified his security and, in many ways, enhanced his continuing growth as an artist. Other programs you may enjoy are with Daniel Ellsberg discussing the Pentagon Papers and Vietman, and with Linda Kremer, Esq., a Marin County, California, public defender who took a leave of absence to direct the Cambodian Defenders Project. They both may be found on this website.

Wayne Knight recommends “Living My Life,” by Emma Goldman.

Originally Broadcast: April 2, 1997

Laura Ferri as Grace Carpenter Hudson: The Painter Lady

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Grace Carpenter Hudson was known as the painter-lady in her hometown of Ukiah, CA. She started her career as a painter when she was a teenager in the 1870s. By the time of her death in 1937, she had produced over 600 canvas paintings and numerous other works. Her skills focused almost exclusively on the lives and cultures of the Pomo Indians who lived in Mendocino County. Her husband, Dr. John Hudson, assisted her by making the study of native culture his life’s work, overshadowing his profession as a physician. Grace Carpenter Hudson was a shrewd businesswoman, as well as an artist of increasing renown. Most of the family income came from the sale of her artwork. I spoke with Grace Carpenter Hudson in the person of actress Laura Ferri at the Grace Carpenter Hudson museum in Ukiah, CA, during an exhibition of her work.

Grace Carpenter Hudson recommends “The Age of Innocence,” by Edith Morton. Laura Ferri recommends “Stones from the River,” by Ursula Hegi.

Originally Broadcast: March 5, 1997

Potok, Chaim: Escaping Communism

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Chaim Potok, the author of “The Chosen,” “The Gift of Asher Lev,”Davida’s Heart,” and many other novels, chronicled the life of a Russian Jewish family in the non-fictions story, “The Gates of November.” This true story of the Slapeck family, Solomon Slapek, his son Valodya, and daughter-in-law Masha, spans 100 years. Beginning with Solomon’s childhood at turn of the 20th century, his escape to America and return to Russia, it eventually describes Valodya and Masha’s life after they apply for an exit visa to leave Russia in 1968, in order to emigrate to Israel. Chaim Potok died July 23, 2002, at his suburban Philadelphia home of brain cancer at the age of 73.

The book Chaim Potok recommends is “The English Patient,” by Michael Ondaatje.

This program was Originally Broadcast: January 8, 1997

McCloud, Scott: The Invisible Art

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Understanding Comics, A Rather Colorful Display: The Invisible Art

Comics have come to hold quite an important place in contemporary society. Satire, particularly political commentary, is perhaps closest to its essence when expressed in the visual comic. However, it also can be argued that comics have played a far greater role in the history of humanity, tracing back to all images depicting a sequential number of actions. My guest in this program is Scott McCloud, author of “Understanding Comics, A Rather Colorful Display: The Invisible Art,” a book about the history of comics.

Scott McCloud recommends “Jar of Fools,” by Jason Lutes.

Originally Broadcast: August 27, 1994

Davis, Don: A Story Teller at Work

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Don Davis, a story-teller from Okracoke, North Carolina and joins us in this archive edition first broadcast in July 1993, when Radio Curious was called Government, Politics and Ideas. In our conversation, we discuss the role of story-telling in our modern technological society, the art and dance of story-telling in person and on tape, and story-telling workshops.

Originally Broadcast: July 19, 1993

Seeger, Pete: Thoughts from a Troubadour: An Interview with Pete Seeger

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This archive edition of Radio Curious was originally recorded and broadcast in January of 1992 when Radio Curious was called “Government, Politics and Ideas.” Our guest is Pete Seeger, a folk musician and a very special person in the lives of many people around the world. He brings songs of hope, peace, justice and equality wherever he goes. He was an inspiration to me when I first learned to play the 5-string banjo and when I took lessons from him, in what seems both long and ago and, just yesterday. We began our conversation when I asked him what he meant when he said “the world is in a state of uncertainty

Originally Broadcast: January 20, 1992

Brodsk, Joseph: A Book of Poems Next to Every Bible

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A Part of Speech, Less Than One, To Urania, Marbles, & Watermark

Joseph Brodsky, a winner of the Noble Prize, was the United States National Poet Laureate in 1991. Born in what was then Leningrad, Soviet Union, he grew up in a communal apartment, and was very active in language and literary pursuits. In 1963, a Leningrad newspaper denounced Brodsky, calling his poetry pornographic and anti-Soviet. He was interrogated and twice put in mental institutions. His papers were seized. He was arrested and indicted on the charge of parasitism. In a secret trial, he was called a “pseudo-poet in velveteen trousers,” who failed to fulfill his “constitutional duty to work honestly for the good of the motherland.” Yet no fault was found in the content of his poetry. One of the more interesting comments Joseph Brodsky made as a guest was that there should be a book of poetry in every hotel room, right next to the Bible. He said that he didn’t think that the telephone book would mind. Joseph Brodsky died on January 28th of 1996, a world-class poet.

Originally Broadcast: November 18, 1991

Diskin, Saul: Identical Twins

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The End of the Twins, a Memoir of Losing a Brother

Ever wondered what it would be like to have an identical twin—how alike would you be to that person? How much of an individual would you be? Saul Diskin and his identical twin brother Marty grew up together in New York City where Saul and Marty were inseparable. As adults, they began to live separate lives, Saul in Phoenix and Marty near Boston. In 1991, Marty, who had suffered from leukemia for 20 years, needed a bone marrow transplant, which he received from Saul. In his extraordinarily intimate book, “The End of the Twins, a Memoir of Losing a Brother,” Saul Diskin chronicles the rich relationship beginning with their early childhood and ending well past Marty’s death in 1997, shortly before their 63rd birthday.

Saul Diskin recommends “Entwined Lives,” by Nancy Segal and “Cosmology and Creation: The Spiritual Significance of Contemporary Cosmology” by Paul Brockelman.

Originally Broadcast: September 22, 2001

Bartholomew, Therese: Asian Art Museum — The Dragon’s Gift – Sacred Arts of Bhutan

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In this edition of Radio Curious we would like to take you to the country of Bhutan, East of Mount Everest and bordered by India and Tibet. Bhutan is a mystical kingdom considered by many as The Last Shangri-La. We visit “The Dragon’s Gift: The Sacred Arts of Bhutan,” an exhibit which was displayed at the Asian Art Museum in San Francisco, California, in the spring of 2009.

We start in conversation with Therese Bartholomew, the curator of the exhibit who helps us to understand what inspired the exhibit and the trials and tribulations of transporting such valuable religious objects from monasteries at the top of Bhutanese mountains to the city of San Francisco.

We will also visit the exhibit itself and hear some of the ceremonies, meet the monks who have traveled with the exhibit and tour the museum docent Henny Tanugjaja.

Therese Bartholomew is the Curator Emeritus of Himalayan Arts at the Asian Art Museum San Francisco the book she recommends is “My Life and Lives, The Story of a Tibetan Incarnation” by Rato Khyongla Nawang Losang. We visited with Therese Bartholomew from her home in San Francisco on the March 27, 2009 and began by asking her what makes Bhutan and Bhutanese arts so special?