The Painted Door Opened
Poetry and Art
by Carolyn Dahl and Carolyn Florek
Dahl and Florek, by way of an impressive breadth of media, frame the almost missed, the revelation nearly obscured by life-dulling expectations. Bound with poetic text, their gallery of paint, photographs, and fabric embodies these dialogs of contrast and connection; and, as if embodying a final paradox, they move into discrete material spaces where their separate voices can be heard. Their striking collaboration reminds me how much we need art to see nature, nature to see art, and both to see ourselves.
— Martha Serpas, author of The Dirty Side of the Storm
Like "coyotes [that] call us to the tattooed stones," this collection calls the reader to a landscape of twin visions, informed by the sister arts of poetry and painting. Initially, one might be tempted to see the volume as primarily ekphrastic, but such is not the book's intent. The Visual Poems, for instance — whether blind drawing or angel — actually reverse the impulse of ekphrasis. They use rich sensory detail not to gaze into a painting but to look fiercely into language and its metaphorical possibilities. Dahl's and Florek's is a vocabulary of color, figure, sound through which these poems witness the external world, not through artifice, but by staring directly into it — whether snow or mud-bottomed stream, duck-weed or canyon hummingbird — so that nature and our humanity meet, leave marks "on the chalkboard of [a] mountain."
— Robin Davidson, author of Luminous Other
Softcover, 85 pages,
12 color photos
Copyright © 2014 Carolyn A. Dahl
All images and text are protected by copyright law and may not be reproduced in whole or in part without the written consent of Carolyn A. Dahl.