Deliberately Framed: A Poetry Event

Junction Bookstore hosted ‘Deliberately Framed: Scenes from a Poetic Stew’ at the end of May. The event marked the 3rd annual Deliberately Framed exhibit, an event where photographers and poets come together to create new art.

Written by Crystal Watkins            Photos by Zuki Juno Tobgye


Deliberately Framed is open to all. Anyone can submit a photo or be a poet, and this year a lucky 16 artists had their work displayed. This year came with a twist. In the past poets were randomly assigned a photograph to write a poem about, however, this year the poets got the chance to pick exactly which photo they wanted. This new feature delighted both photographers and poets alike as the poets could bring life to the photos that inspired them the most.

The atmosphere at Junction Bookstore was intimate. The small setting created a strong sense of community and support for the artists. Viewers were free to browse through the books, or grab a beer or cider as they chatted and mingled. Photographers nervously awaited the reveal, as none of them knew which poet their work had been paired with. Finally, it came time to unveil the art. There was a rush of energy as poets and photographers were able to openly chat with one another for the first time.

Deliberately Framed brought first time poets and photographers together with seasoned pros. Each had a passion that was encouraged and celebrated throughout the event. Everyone who participated in the show was recognized for their contribution, receiving a memento as a gift from Junction Bookstore. All 16 participants got the chance to say a few words on their experiences.

“I felt incredibly lucky to have the opportunity to participate in the event during my time in Bhutan. The opening was such a special gathering, and I really enjoyed getting to meet the poet who wrote about my photo, Urvashi Sharma. She wrote a beautiful poem that really captured the essence of my photo.” said photographer Emma Gracelon.

Themes of the poems crossed a wide range. Some covered topics of isolation and solitude, while others focused on ideas of family, happiness, and even nature. All creative outlets were explored by the poets and each poem fit the photo chosen in a unique way. For the photographers, the photos also were a staple of their creativity. They had the opportunity to submit any photograph they wanted. All of the art was composed of entirely original pieces. By combining two completely different ideas to the same photo, art was able to be explored in new ways. Both the poet and the photographer were able to chat about what came to mind when they thought of the photograph and each walked away with a new perspective.

The exhibition came together this year through the help of a fundraising concert. The Yellow Pencils, The Baby Boomers, The Flying Kicks and more all helped to raise money earlier in the month. The showcase will remain up at Junction Bookstore until June 28th for the general public’s viewing.

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