30 September 2009

Vet Art Project Phoenix Is Born!

Hello My Friends,
Vet Art Project Phoenix was born earlier tonight. Spearheaded by the multi-talented Tessa Windt, we are very excited to bring her into the family. She knows the value of storytelling and the importance of building strong bridges to unite communities. You can contact her at twindt@yahoo.com.

Rainbow Sightings, begun 2008 - ongoing
Online archive of rainbow photographs: www.rainbowsightings.com

25 September 2009

John Fisher returns to Chicago for another inspirational talk on War and the Soul

John Fisher, Senior Veteran's Liaison for Soldier's Heart was in Chicago to speak on War and the Soul. It was an inspirational evening indeed! Here just a small taste of this inspiring warrior:

What an honor and a pleasure to be with everyone in Chicago again. The warrior's journey home is often a long, but in the end a treasured trek through spiritual morality. The gruesome experiences are often denied or harbored, yet the acceptance of destiny begins the enlightenment process to the eventual initiation into warriorhood. Without the journey we suffer with the wound. It's the process of climbing up out of the wound that brings understanding with eventual healing, not just for the veteran, but for the entire society.

See what I mean?!
Then John and myself and Adam Navarro-Lowery and Bill Crist traveled to Racine, Wisconsin for the Soldier's Heart Retreat. Amazing journey filled with storytelling, ritual, healing, and community. More details on upcoming retreats here: www.soldiersheart.net

05 September 2009

Vet Art Project Events in Chicago Announced!

This list will be updated soon with more performance opportunities!
Please visit www.vetartproject.com for more information.
Or send us your e-mail address to lisa@lisarosenthal.com with Vet Art Project e-list in subject line or visit us on Facebook.



The Chicago-based Vet Art Project (www.vetartproject.com) is offering a variety of programs from creative arts workshops to community discussions and performances this Fall. Workshops are free (except for Newberry Library and Chicago Dramatists events) and open to veterans, active duty military personnel, family members of veterans and active duty personnel, practitioners who work with veterans, and artists. Performances and community discussions are open to all and are free of charge, too. Please see details below because programming is offered in multiple locations. The Vet Art Project is grateful for the support of the City of Chicago’s Department of Cultural Affairs Theater for their support.

The Vet Art Project creates opportunities for veterans to work in collaboration with artists from all disciplines to create new art about war for public performance and viewing. The program aims to support our veterans, create stronger voices among our veterans, provide new opportunities for artists, offer a venue to hear the voices of our veterans and artists, and foster discussions about how war affects us all. The Vet Art Project, recipient of the Illinois Humanities Council Towner Award for its unconventional and unique method in pursuit of ambitious goals. The Chicago branch of the Vet Art Project, created by Lisa Rosenthal, is co-led by Jessa Carlstrom. Please register in advance by calling 773-301-5366 or 708-715-5488 or visit us on the Vet Art Project Facebook page. Drop-ins are welcome.

Creative Arts Programming

Thursday, September 24, October 1, and October 8, 5:45-7:45 p.m.

Exploring Our Stories of War & Service

Newberry Library, 60 W. Walton St., Chicago, (312) 255-3700

This workshop, produced in conjunction with the Vet Art Project, encourages the exploration of a story in your own life, the life of a loved one, or of an historical or fictional character that can help us understand various perspectives on war and the affect it has on soldiers. Led by Lisa Rosenthal. There is a fee for this workshop. Visit www.newberry.org/programs/currentschedule for details.

Wednesday, October 14, 6-10 p.m.

Family Theater Night

Chicago Cultural Center, 78 E. Washington Street, Garland Room (1st floor), Chicago

Welcoming all family members recently reunited post-tour of duty to learn improv techniques to recreate a happy family occasion and if you are a veteran without any immediate family living in the area, come and create a happy memory with participating artists or bring your urban family. Led by Salsation Theatre Company

Public Performances & Appearances (Open to the Public):

More performance programming will be announced shortly!

Saturday, October 24, 10 a.m.-3 p.m.

Open Rehearsal for New Art about War created for the forthcoming Vet Art Project Veteran’s Day performances

National Vietnam Veterans Art Museum, 1801 S. Indiana Street, Chicago, (312) 326-0270, www.nvvam.org

These Vet Art Project performances honor Veterans Day, featuring dance, drama, poetry, and more. Witness the stories unfolding or view the art in the galleries of the museum that tell their own stories.

Saturday, October 31, 2:00 p.m.

Stephen’s Psalm, written by Lisa Rosenthal, directed by Julieanne Ehre, Chicago Dramatists Saturday Play Reading Series. Chicago Dramatists, 1105 W. Chicago Ave., (312) 633-0630, www.chicagodramatists.org

A father tries to reconnect to his estranged son before his son goes off to Iraq. The father travels to the source of his grief—the site where he lost his brother in the Vietnam War when he was just 15—to find the key to unlock his son’s heart. Created in the Vet Art Project. $5 suggested donation to support Chicago Dramatists.

Sunday, November 22, 2:30 p.m. Warrior Poetry & Talkback following Heros at Remy Bumppo Theater

Following the matinee performance and talkback for Heros, a comedy about three war veterans who meet in a retirement home and become fast friends, features award-winning Chicago actors Mike Nussbaum, David Darlow, and Roderick Peeples, please join us for Warrior Poetry, a reading of poetry written by Chicago-area veterans with a talkback to follow.

Community Discussions

Wednesday, September 16, 6:30-9:30 p.m.

War and the Soul Workshop

Chicago Cultural Center, 78 E. Washington Street, Garland Room (1st floor), Chicago

The presentation will explore how trauma affects veterans and how our communities can help. Q&A session to follow. Led by John Fisher, Senior Veteran Liaison, Soldier’s Heart, & Vietnam Veteran

Saturday, October 3, 2009, 11 a.m.-12:30 p.m.

What Civilians Need to Understand About Homecoming

National Vietnam Veterans Art Museum, 1801 S. Indiana Street, Chicago, (312) 326-0270, www.nvvam.org

This mini-workshop, created with the Vet Art Project, is for civilians who want to understand the homecoming process—transiting from the combat zone to the home front. Led by Dr. John Mundt, Ph.D., Licensed Clinical Psychologist, Day Hospital, Jesse Brown VA Medical Center.

Wednesday, October 7, 7:00-9:00 p.m. (and meeting the first Wednesday of every month)

Women Warriors Discussion Group

Various locations. E-mail Sabrina_waller@yahoo.com for updated information

This group will be a discussion opportunity for female veterans and female artists to get together and discuss common interests and concerns. We'll form the foundations of the group at the first meeting. Some art may grow out of this group but it's not required to participate nor is it required to be a veteran artist to participate.

Out of Town Events

Sunday, September 13, 10 a.m.-5 p.m. and Saturday, October 10, 9-11 a.m.

With Performance on Sunday, November 8, 7 p.m. Sandburg Auditorium, Holmes Student Center, DeKalb, IL

Vet Art Project NIU

A day of workshops to create a collaborative community, rehearsals and public performance on November 8, 2009. In association with NIU Veteran’s Club, JD Kammes, President.

Sunday, November 8, 7 p.m.

Vet Art Project NIU: Stories of War and Service, Northern Illinois University, Holmes Student Center, Sandburg Hall, DeKalb, Illinois

This performance and viewing of art created in the inaugural Vet Art Project NIU is open to the public.

Saturday, November 21, 3-9 p.m. Family Theater Event, Music, and Potluck Discussion on Veterans Issues

Lakeside Legacy Arts Park, 401 Country Club Road, Crystal Lake, IL 60014, 815-455-8000, www.lakesidelegacy.org.

Family Theater Event at 3 p.m., using improvisational techniques to recreate happy family times. Music from 5:30-7 p.m., featuring David Sarkis and others. Potluck and Discussion begins at 7 p.m.

The Vet Art Project is produced in association with the City of Chicago’s Department of Cultural Affairs’ Theater. The project is supported, in part, by the Puffin Foundation, the Illinois Humanities Council, the National Endowment for the Humanities, and the Illinois General Assembly, Chicago Dramatists, Stage Left Theatre, Rivendell Theatre Ensemble, 16th Street Theater, and is fiscally sponsored by Fractured Atlas.

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“Veterans are the light at the tip of the candle, illuminating the way for the whole nation. If veterans can achieve awareness, transformation, understanding, and peace, they can share with the rest of society the realities of war. And they can teach us how to make peace with ourselves and each other, so we never have to use violence to resolve conflicts again.”

—Vietnamese Buddhist monk Thich Nhat Hanh

DoD & VA Open to Vet Art Project Mission as it Aids Resiliency

The Vet Art Project was warmly received at the recent DoD Force Health Care Conference in NM. I'm working on making this interest become programming and growing opportunities f to hear the stories of our veterans and their family members!
Next up Soldier's Heart Retreat in Racine, WI with Edward Tick and then onto the DoD/VA OEF/OIF Conference in Las Vegas. Onward and upward!