A short video preview of the upcoming Beyond Granite project, which will invite visionary artists to create special commemorative works, performances, and installations on the National Mall and throughout the District of Columbia.
Jesse Dorris writes for The New Yorker on the newly-unveiled permanent memorial for the six teachers and twenty young children killed at Sandy Hook Elementary School on December 14, 2012: The memorial’s spatial poetics—the balance between circular pathways and blocks of granite, its enduring engravings of names in stone and perennials for texture and color … Read more“The Contemplative, Unnerving Beauty of the Sandy Hook Memorial”
On Sunday I presented my “Unboxing an Antique Ghost Show” show-and-tell lecture for an audience at the Chicago Insect Asylum art gallery. After a couple of years of performing the presentation via Zoom for various organizations around Halloween, it was fun – and rather poignant – to be able to show my Dad’s collection of … Read moreDays of Life and Death: Seasonal Observances
Sacred Tension podcast host Stephen Bradford Long interviews author Shiva Honey on her new book The Devil’s Death, a guide to the ritual, philosophical and practical matters of dying and death from the modern Satanic perspective. The book is available here.
My new article for OnlySky Media is a memoir of my year-long experiment in public art/memorial: In 2015 I moved to Rogers Park, and during the Summer Solstice of 2021 was inspired to join the Artists of the Wall project. I painted my roughly four-foot section of the wall a midnight blue, and upon that field … Read more“… with hope that this assemblage of rubble would become a shrine …”
Since moving to our new riverside neighborhood, I’ve been in the habit of leaving small memorial tokens – leaves, pieces of bark, twigs, etc. – on this tree stump along the river pathway. Very occasionally, there’s been evidence that others are likewise leaving items on the stump, though their purpose is unknown to me. This … Read moreRiverside Shrine
This evening I was intrigued to happen across an artistic memorial ritual taking place within minutes of my home. The Ishti Collective’s Returning Home ritual honors those who have returned to the earth via a symbolic ceremony involving rangoli designs and a short walking meditation, followed by a graceful dance performance.
In 2017, Burning Man’s theme was “Radical Ritual,” and the Burning Man Philosophical Center project produced a series of essays and interviews exploring the place of ritual in modern society. Here’s a section from Larry Harvey’s introductory essay: Is Burning Man a Religion? “The practical needs and experiences of religion seem to me sufficiently met … Read moreThe “Radical Ritual” Series
A new memorial ritual emerges at Green-Wood Cemetery in NYC, where people have begun leaving sticks for Rex, a Very Good Boy whose statue may date back to the year 1884.
An excerpt from this classic of the ’60s counterculture: How to Start Your Own Religion First, decide with whom you will make the voyage of discovery. If you have a family, certainly you will include them. If you have close friends, you will certainly want to include them. The question, with whom do I league … Read more“Start Your Own Religion” (Timothy Leary, 1967)