Steven Paul Lansky Reading & Performance at Clifton Cultural Arts Center Nov. 14

Steve Lansky photo

On Saturday, November 14 at 5:30 pm Steven Paul Lansky will host an event at the Clifton Cultural Arts Center (CCAC). Steve is a fiction writer, poet, musician, artist, and animated videographer who lives in Clifton. This free event might be seen as an overview of at least a small portion of Steve’s career, with both a literary reading and a multi-media presentation in connection with Jack Acid (which Steve has described as a “postmodern psychedelic picaresque novel modeled after the Appalachian jacktale)” as well as some live music. For this event Steve will receive a little help from his friends, including the singer and songwriter Angel Starlove, as well as the Wilson Snopes band, a two-piece band in which which Steve plays harmonica. This performance is a fundraiser to support Steve’s upcoming trip to the 20th Annual AAWP Conference in Melbourne, Australia. Steve will have plenty of things for sale, including downloads of the Jack Acid audionovel, a CD by Wilson Snopes, original art, and copies of the literary magazine This: A Serial Review, which included an excerpt from Jack Acid. Expect colorful prose and music from someone who has long been an important figure in Cincinnati’s literary scene; you’ll have an opportunity to see a projected image of this animated video in DVD quality that Steve created in collaboration with other Cincinnati artists:

Steve, who has both an MA and an MFA, taught at Miami University for 15 years. Once the poet laureate of Over the Rhine, Steve recently received a grant from the Ohio Arts Council. He has published two chapbooks, Main St. and Eleven Word Title for Confessional Political Poetry Originally Composed for Radio, as well as the audionovel Jack Acid. Recently Steve has published in Cosmonauts Avenue, Whole Terrain, New Flash Fiction Review, Black Clock 20, and St. Petersburg Review Issue 8.

Rainbow’s End, mixed media by Steven Paul Lansky

 Jack Acid is necessarily a trippy story, and by some turn of events this performance will take place in what was Steve Lansky’s fourth grade social studies classroom. The piece will bring the listener to the end of the rainbow where Jack Acid finds a lotus tree that miraculously fixes the bad front tooth that he broke as a child.

Live Salsa Music at CCAC This Wednesday

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Musically it’s been a lively summer for the Clifton Cultural Arts Center, with good-sized crowds showing up consistently for the free Wednesdays on the Green concert series.  The concerts are a good excuse for getting out of the house, mingling, and enjoying the nice weather; many people walk to the show from where they live. Last week I snapped some photos of a concert there, and as you can see, it’s a hit with the kids as well as the adults. This Wednesday, July 8, the salsa band known as Cla’ve Son will be performing.

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As always, there will be food vendors; on tap this week are Kaimelsky’s, Roll With It Café, and streetpops. The music starts at 7pm, rain or shine. (If there’s rain, the event will take place on the first floor of the CCAC.) And remember, Wednesdays on the Green takes place every week through August 12. Here’s some footage of Cla’ve Son in concert; come check them out this Wednesday!




Free Opening at the CCAC Nov. 14


From 6pm to 8pm on Friday, Nov. 14 the Clifton Cultural Arts Center will host a free opening. This event will usher in the new exhibition CURRENTS, a sound and light collaboration between sound artist Justin West and installation artist Sean Mullaney. The exhibition will run until Wednesday, December 4th, 2013.

Collaborations between sound and image are still a new phenomenon in the art world, so you’ll never know what you’ll see and hear. The video below features a previous installation by CURRENTS collaborator Sean Mullaney without music. Watching it makes me wonder what will happen when sound combines with his upcoming collaboration:


Chris Comer Trio at CCAC This Thursday

It’s going to be a very musical evening this Thursday at the Clifton Cultural Arts Center, with Cincinnati jazz artists the Chris Comer Trio performing from 7 to 8:30 pm. For this special engagement the trio will be adding saxophonist and flautist Dan Barger. Dan plays all over the place in Cincinnati and is in several bands, including Los Honchos, Frequency, Don’t Fear The Satellites, Iolite and some of the local salsa bands that play frequently at Fountain Square. Because the event will be held in the top-floor auditorium, “where the sunset streams through the windows,”  the concert is part of CCAC’s “Sunset at the Center” series.  Tickets are available here:


Underscoring the musical nature of the event is the special preview of the Dick Waller Retrospective: Music at an Exhibition, which will have its full opening celebration on March 17. Along with founding the Linton Chamber Series and being principal clarinetist of the Cincinnati Symphony Orchestra, Dick Waller has developed a style he calls free association painting. A chief source inspiration for Waller’s painting has been the classical composer Bela Bartok. Continue reading “Chris Comer Trio at CCAC This Thursday”

CCAC Celebrates By Making You an Artist

Spirits are high at the Clifton Cultural Arts Center after exceeding their 2012 campaign goal, and they want to celebrate by projecting your artwork on a three-story high building.

The celebration will take place over two nights. Artifact: Art Altogether kicks off this Sunday, January 6, from 6:30 – 8:30 pm with the Opening celebration. “Bundle up and bring a lawn chair,” the press release advises. “The hot cocoa is on us, and Waffo Truck and Fireside Pizza will be there selling tasty dinner.”

On both nights projections based on your drawings will be the center of attention. When I spoke to the CCAC’s Program Coordinator, Missy Miller, she told me that the idea for this creative and fun event came from local artist C. Jacqueline Wood.

“Jacqueline has created a template of the exterior of a wing of our building,” Missy explained, “ which will become a giant architectural canvas. Jacqueline will take your creation and use a special projector to beam it three stories high, so it will look like it’s been painted across the entire side of the building. We’re asking you to share a drawing, or a doodle, or a love story—anything your imagination can conjure on paper. Thanks to Jacqueline’s creative vision and the community’s incredible generosity, we’re able to turn our walls inside out and share the artistic expressions of everyone who makes CCAC possible.”

Continue reading “CCAC Celebrates By Making You an Artist”

Esquire Theatre’s Art House Jamboree: A Chance to Show Some Love


What were you doing in 1911? Not much, you say? Yeah, me too. But I know something about what other people were doing, and that happened to be the year the Esquire Theatre on Ludlow Avenue in Clifton opened its doors. To celebrate the fact that The Esquire not only survived 101 years but expanded, the folks at the Esquire are hosting The Art House Jamboree Saturday, November 10 at 8 pm. The evening will feature none other than Jerry Springer, who’ll show some love by hosting what has been billed as a “whimsical evening of time travel, stories & celebration.” Proceeds from the event will benefit the Clifton Cultural Arts Center.

Other highlights of the evening include: Continue reading “Esquire Theatre’s Art House Jamboree: A Chance to Show Some Love”

Art Exhibit at Clifton Cultural Arts Center

From June 1 to August 2 the Clifton Cultural Arts Center, located at 3711 Clifton Ave., will be hosting an exhibit that deals with a theme that must have struck a chord with both local and national artists.

“The response was phenomenal,” the CCAC’s press release states; “in excess of 200 pieces were submitted for consideration.”

Ultimately 20 works were chosen. So what was the theme that drew such a strong response? Continue reading “Art Exhibit at Clifton Cultural Arts Center”

The “Boss Cox Booksale” at the Clifton Cultural Arts Center

Clifton Cultural Arts Center booksale(2012) Every day hundreds of people walk past this building, but few of them know its history. They don’t know who built it and they don’t know who lived there. That will change, though, now that the space is being converted to a library that will replace the charming but much smaller space on Ludlow Avenue.

Located on Jefferson Avenue across from Burnet Woods, the Parkside Manor was designed by Samuel Hannaford, a famous architect who also built Music Hall, City Hall and over 300 other buildings in the late nineteenth and early twentieth century. The person who originally lived there was no slouch, either: historically George “Boss” Cox has earned his place at the Mount Rushmore of crooked Ohio politicians, a place that also includes, of more recent vintage, James Traficant (who got in a lot more trouble, by the way, for his actions; maybe it was his hair).    Continue reading “The “Boss Cox Booksale” at the Clifton Cultural Arts Center”