October 1, 2022

Intimacy Of A Stranger Poetry Reading at Townsend Atelier is April 15

Townsend Atelier will host a performance of original poetry by Chattanooga poets Moll King and Erika Roberts on Friday, April 15, from 6-8 p.m. Sculptor Maria Willison will also demonstrate live portrait sculpting. The event is open to the public for free, but $5 donations are welcome.

In January 2021, Ms King and Ms Roberts were hired as portrait models for a sculpture workshop at Townsend Atelier run by internationally renowned sculptor David Simon. They had to stand still for seven hours a day (with breaks) for three days while being studied and sculpted by 10 students who had signed up for the workshop. The experience of being intensely observed and scrutinized by strangers became a deeply personal experience for both models. Each felt compelled to capture their unique experience by writing poetry which will be performed at Intimacy of a Stranger, April 15 at Townsend Atelier.

With portrait sculpture, we often only look at and admire the finished artwork without thinking about what the experience was like for the sitter or what they were feeling or thinking. Ms King says: “I want to have a conversation with you all about what it’s like to fall in short-term love. What it’s like to have your heart full for just one day and drink intimacy from a stranger. He’s the most drunk I’ve ever been.”

The evening will include performances by each poet, process photographs from the sculpting studio and a live sculpting demonstration by Ms. Willison.

Ms. Roberts says, “Poetry allows for the organic sharing of a vision.

Townsend Atelier is located in The Arts Building at 301 East 11th St.