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Be Here; Be Poetry


Diorama is a hybrid-life series rooted in poetry and engaged in site and performer specific experience. The traditional stage of poetry readings is replaced with an interwoven space built of language, shape, and sound. Events hold poetry as an intimate art, bodily and specific to its creator as dance and singing are, with a focus on startling imagery and sensitivity to sound. Special events also premier commissioned music: collaborations between featured poets and composers.

Instagram: @dioramapoetry, #dioramapoetry

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Be Here; Be Poetry


Diorama is a hybrid-life series rooted in poetry and engaged in site and performer specific experience. The traditional stage of poetry readings is replaced with an interwoven space built of language, shape, and sound. Events hold poetry as an intimate art, bodily and specific to its creator as dance and singing are, with a focus on startling imagery and sensitivity to sound. Special events also premier commissioned music: collaborations between featured poets and composers.

Instagram: @dioramapoetry, #dioramapoetry

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Diorama: Lux


Upcoming Event

Date: December 21st, 2019
Location: Santa Barbara, CA

The winter solstice represents both the death and the rebirth of life. This winter, Diorama: Lux invites you to the bridge between, in a celebration of the dichotomies of life and the power of light.

More details revealed soon…

Diorama: Lux


Upcoming Event

Date: December 21st, 2019
Location: Santa Barbara, CA

The winter solstice represents both the death and the rebirth of life. This winter, Diorama: Lux invites you to the bridge between, in a celebration of the dichotomies of life and the power of light.

More details revealed soon…

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Diorama: Interior


“IN THE STILL PLACES OF ME / ALL MOUTHS CLOSED (THE WAY I PRAY, OR THE PRAYER / GRANTED.)”

Diorama: Interior
is a village in echo, a dialogue on community through the eye of perceived isolation.

Interior premiered March 2019 at the Portland Institute for Contemporary Art in Portland, OR. It marks the first episode in a series of Dioramas based in landscape.

Diorama: Interior


“IN THE STILL PLACES OF ME / ALL MOUTHS CLOSED (THE WAY I PRAY, OR THE PRAYER / GRANTED.)”

Diorama: Interior
is a village in echo, a dialogue on community through the eye of perceived isolation.

Interior premiered March 2019 at the Portland Institute for Contemporary Art in Portland, OR. It marks the first episode in a series of Dioramas based in landscape.

Featured Readers

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Emily Kendal Frey

Emily Kendal Frey is the author of Sorrow Arrow (Octopus Books, 2014). She teaches at The Independent Publishing Resource Center, Marylhurst University, Portland Community College, and Portland State University. She lives in Portland, Oregon.

Brookes Moody

Brookes Moody holds a BA in English from Colby College and an MFA in Creative Writing from The New School. A Jersey girl with Rhode Island roots, her poems have appeared in magazines like Barnstorm, The Northern New England Review, and Silver Needle Press.  She is currently pursuing her PhD in English with a concentration in Creative Writing at University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee where she teaches creative writing and literary journal production. A founding editor of the online poetry magazine The Mackinac, Brookes has also served as the Development Manager for Cream City Review and co-coordinated the Eat Local::Read Local poetry series.

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Julia ClaRE Tillinghast

Julia Clare Tillinghast is a white anti-racist feminist gender-non-binary poet from from Michigan. She has published a chapbook of her own poems and co-translated a book of contemporary 20th century Turkish poetry by the experimental poet Edip Cansever.* She has had poems in Fence Magazine, [PANK], Sixth Finch, Tin House & Leveler, elsewhere. She has lived in Ann Arbor, New York, Istanbul, Virginia, and most recently in Portland, Oregon, with her partner Matthew and her two children. She also teaches yoga and ESL.


*[eh-DEEP JOHN-sev-air]

photography & videography: Tomás Alfredo Valladares

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Diorama: Bestiary


"I WATCHED HIS COILED MUSCLES BREATHING LIKE FOALS AND BEARS AND LEOPARDS."
                        - RACHEL BOYADJIS
 

Interactive and communicated through verse, Diorama: Bestiary is an exploration of the impact of self-mythologization. Which poetry card will you get; which journey will you choose?

Bestiary premiered June 2018 as part of Atlas Obscura's Great Forgotten Garden Party in the Untermyer Gardens, NY. Created and written by Alyssa Morhardt-Goldstein and Rachel Boyadjis and featuring additional poetry by Celestine and Lark.

Diorama: Bestiary


"I WATCHED HIS COILED MUSCLES BREATHING LIKE FOALS AND BEARS AND LEOPARDS."
                        - RACHEL BOYADJIS
 

Interactive and communicated through verse, Diorama: Bestiary is an exploration of the impact of self-mythologization. Which poetry card will you get; which journey will you choose?

Bestiary premiered June 2018 as part of Atlas Obscura's Great Forgotten Garden Party in the Untermyer Gardens, NY. Created and written by Alyssa Morhardt-Goldstein and Rachel Boyadjis and featuring additional poetry by Celestine and Lark.

DIORAMA: BESTIARY

PEEP THE POETRY CARD DECK...

Of what myths are you made, what metamorphosis?

What roles do mythology, self-mythologization, and metamorphosis play in your life? What have the effects been? Where does the line between self-mythologization and self-deification lie? An interactive, immersive ritual communicated through verse, Bestiary is a meditation on these questions. A lyric in prism, a catharsis of identity, a homecoming.

Metaphor is the vehicle of both poetry and mythology. Their shared medium: storytelling. Their shared purpose: self-awareness -- transcendence from the dichotomies of time and ego to the oneness of our shared eternity. The ability to self-reflect is the fundamental difference between animals and humans. Poetry and mythology ignite in us self-reflection and self-awareness, ushering us from beast to human, launching in us a metamorphosis. From relentless time, to timelessness; from beast to being.

The poetry of Bestiary is that of metamorphosis: the crisis just prior, of mid-transformation, or the radiant wisdom that follows.

Which poetry card will you get; which journey will you choose?


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THE EVENT

"Join Atlas Obscura and the Untermyer Garden Conservancy to experience the wonder and beauty of Untermyer Gardens...Attendees will find themselves transported back to the golden years of the Greystone Estate, when Mrs. Minnie Untermyer hosted some of the greatest artists and performers of the early 20th century and Samuel Untermyer roamed the property with a white orchid in his lapel." - Atlas Obscura

Click here for more info on Atlas Obscura's paramount, summer event.


THE GARDENS

Photographs of Untermyer Gardens

"Hidden behind a great stone wall overlooking the Hudson River resides a masterpiece of unspoken beauty. Statues of sphinxes tower from beyond the embarkment, crumbling tiles line the remembrance of an elaborate mosaic pool, and 2,000-year-old imported Roman columns frame a dramatic view of the Palisades." - Atlas Obscura

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Diorama: Missa Brevis


"TIME AS A CIRCLE, OUR BODIES AS INLAY."
- ALYSSA MORHARDT-GOLDSTEIN


Diorama: Missa Brevis is an immersive meditation on time, the fierceness of our mortality, and the power of transcendence. Written and performed by Alyssa Morhardt-Goldstein and Lisa Marie Basile, this piece offers its participants the opportunity to truly hear and let go.

Missa Brevis premiered October 2017 as part of Atlas Obscura's Into the Veil event in historic Green-Wood Cemetery, NYC.

Diorama: Missa Brevis


"TIME AS A CIRCLE, OUR BODIES AS INLAY."
- ALYSSA MORHARDT-GOLDSTEIN


Diorama: Missa Brevis is an immersive meditation on time, the fierceness of our mortality, and the power of transcendence. Written and performed by Alyssa Morhardt-Goldstein and Lisa Marie Basile, this piece offers its participants the opportunity to truly hear and let go.

Missa Brevis premiered October 2017 as part of Atlas Obscura's Into the Veil event in historic Green-Wood Cemetery, NYC.

photography: Gary Kenney

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Creator


Creator


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Alyssa Morhardt-Goldstein

Founder & Artistic Director

Alyssa Morhardt-Goldstein is a poet, classically trained soprano, and educator recently moved to Santa Barbara, CA after 12yrs in NYC. She is the author of Nympholepsy (Inside the Castle, 2018), which was a finalist for the 2017 Tarpaulin Sky Book Prize and from which excerpts are forthcoming in the Best American Experimental Writing (summer 2020). She is also the author of Quiet, winner of The New School University Press contest; semifinalist for the 2015 Tarpaulin Sky Book Prize for her collection, Forniphilia; and her work can be found in Sporklet, Prick of the Spindle, Front Porch, and others.

Alyssa is the Founder and Artistic Director of Diorama, the hybrid life poetry series with events hosted by Atlas Obscura and the Portland Institute for Contemporary Art. She is also the Founding Editor of [saUnd] Literary Magazine, the cross-genre publication on contemporary musico-poetics; and founder of Wildwood Home for the Arts, a center for voice, poetry, and music education.

Alyssa holds certifications in Heart-Based Singing and Orff Schulwerk. She received her MFA in poetry from NYC’s The New School, and her BM in classical vocal performance and concurrent BA in English literature from Mannes Conservatory.


Past Collaborators

Rachel Boyadjis
Diorama: Bestiary (premiered June 2018)

Rachel Boyadjis is a poet, aerialist, and actress living in NYC. She is the Co-Director of Contemporary Circus/Aerial Dance collaborative Circus Solaris, and one half of the aerial duo The Lost Boys. @circus.solaris


Lisa Marie Basile, Co-Founder
Volumes and Diorama: Missa Brevis (premiered Oct. 2017)

Lisa Marie Basile is the editor-in-chief of Luna Luna Magazine and Ingenue X. She is the author of Apocryphal (Noctuary Press) and a few chapbooks, including Andalucia (Poetry Society of NY) and war/lock (Hyacinth Girl). She was a finalist for the 2017 Tarpaulin Sky Book Prize, and you can find her work in The Atlas Review, Spork, PANK, Dusie, Huffington Post, the Tin House blog and Ampersand Review. She's also a journalist and editor.