When I first approached the celebrated painter Ken Kirkby with my idea for a collaboration in creating and publishing a book with his paintings and my poems, I was moved by an artist’s quest for assimilation and search for that common denomination that joins, defines, compliments the work of one through the work of the other. I had never imagined that the result would be a book of such elegance and grace, a book of such warmth and endless light, merging into a delightful balance of both art forms, intermingling in an almost liturgical celebration of the cosmos with all its greatness in its mega or its micro expression.

VESPERS, the book that resulted from this collaboration surely celebrates our labour to successfully evoke a meaning and dynamism at the center of uncertainty and mystery that the world exhumes in every breath it takes; it celebrates the revealing of that sure foundation of balance that exists everywhere and is so profoundly presented when two artists via different approaches come to the merging point of defining clarity and contention; when the two are fused in one.

View this set, an ode to a fallen tree, by Kirby and Manolis:

Valiant

Valiant warrior lies on his side
distanced from the battleground
crushed under heavy memory

of ferocious winds and other
diaphanous enemies
on his side, root feet bared

armor resting, it was here
that he heard every spring
morning, his beloved’s

voice echoing in the woods
and taken by the sea waves
to far lands, a ballad

chanting his accomplishment
of resisting every well-sharpened
enemy spear or axe

From VESPERS by Manolis and Ken Kirby, Libros Libertad, 2010

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  1. […] ‘The merging points: an experience in creative collaboration’ by Manolis […]

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