Articles 1984-1999

I have written many articles over the years. Some are still of interest, though just as many are not. Journalism, like other things, can become dated or loose relevancy. What follows is a selection of my published work from the years 1984 through 1999. I’ve chosen these pieces as I feel they have some value or still may be of interest to readers. A few are personal favorites, while others are markers which show some aspect of my work as a journalist. I have linked to as many pieces as possible.

If you are interested in checking out more of my online or offline journalism, visit one or more of the following pages.

1984 – 1999  //  2000 – 2009  //  2010 – 2014  //  2015 – today

“The Shocking Miss Pilgrim,” Booksense 76. August 20, 1999.
— short piece about the memoir by screenwriter Frederica Sagor Maas

“Letter to the Editor.” Holt Uncensored. March 17, 1999.
— newsletter by the former San Francisco Chronicle book editor Pat Holt

1998
“On the Poetry Beat.” American Bookseller, March 1998.

“San Francisco Scene.” Art-Talk, January 1998.
— my last column covering the Bay Area art scene

1997
“San Francisco Scene.” Art-Talk, December 1997.

“San Francisco Scene.” Art-Talk, October 1997.

“Modern Censorship: A Booksellers View.” Bookwire.com, September 20, 1997.
— one of my very first online pieces

“San Francisco Silent Film Festival a Success.” Classic Images, September 1997.
— reportage

“Bookstore Bestsellers: Erotica.” American Bookseller, July 1997.

“San Francisco Scene.” Art-Talk, June/July 1997.

“San Francisco Scene.” Art-Talk, February 1997.

1996
“San Francisco Scene.” Art-Talk, December 1996.

“San Francisco Scene.” Art-Talk, October 1996.

“San Francisco Scene.” Art-Talk, June/July 1996.

“Silent Film Festival in San Francisco.” Classic Images, June 1996.
— one of a few pieces published in this film journal

“San Francisco Scene.” Art-Talk, February 1996.

“Allen Ginsberg.” S Press, 1996.

1995
“San Francisco Scene.” Art-Talk, December 1995.

“San Francisco Scene.” Art-Talk, October 1995.

“Charting the World of Fiction in Translation.” American Bookseller, June 1995.

“San Francisco Scene.” Art-Talk, June/July 1995.

“San Francisco Scene.” Art-Talk, March 1995.

“Opening Festivities at SFMOMA.” Art-Talk, March 1995.

“Jim Carroll: Verbal Entries.” X-Ray, Winter, 1995.
— interview with author of The Basketball Diaries

“San Francisco Scene.” Art-Talk, January 1995.

1994
“San Francisco Scene.” Art-Talk, December 1994.

“Walking Art: Hayes Valley.” SF Live, November 1994.

“Walking Art: Grant Avenue Corridor.” SF Live, October 1994.

“San Francisco Scene.” Art-Talk, October 1994.

“Silent Film Festival Debuts in San Francisco.” Classic Images, September 1994.

“San Francisco Scene.” Art-Talk, June/July 1994.

“An Interview with poet, composer, and Fluxus artist Jackson Mac Low.” X-Ray, Spring 1994.
— reprint in the acclaimed ‘zine

“Interview with Allen Ginsberg.” Reed Magazine, Spring 1994.
— reprint; literary journal from San Jose State University

“San Francisco Scene.” Art-Talk, March 1994.

“The Latest on Book Clubs and Reading Groups.” American Bookseller, February 1994.

“San Francisco Scene.” Art-Talk, January 1994.

1993
“San Francisco Scene.” Art-Talk, December 1993.

“People in Books: George Evans.” American Bookseller, December 1993.
— profile of the poet

“The Poetry Revolution.” American Bookseller, December 1993.

“San Francisco Scene.” Art-Talk, October 1993.

“San Francisco Scene.” Art-Talk, June/July 1993.

“Rock Bottom Remainders Bring Three Chords and an Attitude to ABA.” ABA Show Daily, 1993.
— early coverage of the now famed literary rock band (which included Stephen King, Matt Groenig, Amy Tan, Dave Barry, etc….)

“Kid’s Book Events from H-E-Double Hockey Sticks.” American Bookseller, March 1993.
— the title was my suggestion; this is the only time a cuss word has been used in the title of one of my articles

“San Francisco Scene.” Art-Talk, March 1993.

“Reading, Writing and Referencing.” American Bookseller, January 1993.

“San Francisco Scene.” Art-Talk, January 1993.

1992
“San Francisco Scene.” Art-Talk, December 1992.

“San Francisco Scene.” Art-Talk, October 1992.
— my first column covering local art scene

“Paul Strand: More than Attractive Images.” West Art, August 14, 1992.

“Robert Rauschenberg: The Early 1950s.” West Art, July 24, 1992.
— I remember meeting the artist

“Geological Architecture.” San Francisco Sentinel, July 17, 1992.

“One Sings, One Writes: The Rock Bottom Remainders.” American Bookseller, July 1992.

On the Composition of Images, Signs & Ideas, by Giordano Bruno.” Small Press, Spring 1992.
— book review

“Some Recent California Art.” West Art, May 22, 1992.

“Stuart Davis: American Painter.” West Art, April 24, 1992.

“Images of an Islamic Paradise.” Montclarion, March 12, 1992.

Let’s Murder the Moonshine: Selected Writings, by F.T. Marinetti.” Small Press, Winter 1992.
— book review

“Historic Photographic Images by Peter Stackpole.” West Art, February 28, 1992.
— I remember meeting the artist

“Surrealist Works from Mexico.” West Art, February 14, 1992.

1991
“Lee Friedlander Photography.” West Art, December 27, 1991.
— I remember meeting the artist

“Memorable images in Peter Stackpole show.” Berkeley Voice, December 10, 1991.

“Interview with Allen Ginsberg.” Shots, November/December 1991.
— reprint of interview in photography ‘zine

“Theater in Revolution.” San Francisco Sentinel, November 28, 1991.

“Robert Bechtle: A Sense of Atmosphere.” West Art, November 8, 1991.
— I remember meeting the artist

“Modern African art on display at Berkeley’s UAM.” Montclarion, November 1, 1991.

“Video and Bookstores: The Big Picture.” American Bookseller, November 1991.

One Hundred Paintings, by Russell Chatham.” Small Press, Fall 1991.
— book review

Medea the Sorceress, by Diane Wakoski.” Small Press, Fall 1991.
— book review

The Destruction of Tilted Arc: Documents, by Clara Weyergraf-Serra and Martha Buskirk.” Small Press, Fall 1991.
— book review

“The Flowering of San Francisco’s Critical and Literary Renaissance.” San Francisco Review of Books, Fall 1991.
— book review

“Genius Over Gender: Wendy Lesser on Current Theories About Men, Women and Creation of Art.” San Francisco Review of Books, Fall 1991.
— interview / profile co-authored with Linda Voris

“Facing Independence.” San Francisco Independent, October 15, 1991.
— review of exhibit of art from Indonesia

“Ralph Eugene Meatyard: American Visionary.” West Art, October 11, 1991.

“Bringing Books to Life: A Bay Area Rep Reaches Out Through Reading Aloud.” American Bookseller, September 1991.

“Speaking Volumes for Small Presses.” American Bookseller, September 1991.

“Poet/Photographer Allen Ginsberg.” West Art, August 9, 1991.
— article

“Assemblage of Works by Betye and Alison Saar.” West Art, August 9, 1991.

PhotoMetro“Interview with Allen Ginsberg.” Photo Metro, August 1991.
— cover story, later praised by the subject and reprinted on a few occasions including in two books (see pic >)

“Duane Michals: A Penchant for Narrative.” San Francisco Sentinel, July 25, 1991.

“Ronald Bladen’s Bold Vision.” San Francisco Sentinel, June 13, 1991.

“Addressing the Human Figure.” Oakland Post, May 29, 1991.

“Francesco Clemente’s Three Worlds.” West Art, May 24, 1991.

“John Langley Howard’s Life in Art.” West Art, April 26, 1991.

“Sacred Art of Tibet.” Berkeley Tri-City Post, April 24, 1991.

“Audio Appreciation: A Crash Course in Recorded Literature.” American Bookseller, April 1991.

“17th century Dutch masterpieces at de Young.” Montclarion, March 12, 1991.

“Freud exhibit fascinating.” Montclarion, February 12, 1991.

“Alma Lavenson Photography: From Pictorialism to Modernism.” West Art, January 11, 1991.

1990
“New Pop Art by Roy Lichenstein.” West Art, December 14, 1990.
— gallery review

“The Profits of Poetry.” American Bookseller, November 1990.
— wrriten for this trade journal

“Ze’ev Chafets Sings the Motown Blues.” San Francisco Chronicle, October 29, 1990.
— book review

“Surrealism seen anew.” Montclarion, October 16, 1990.

“Man Ray.” Photo Metro, October, 1990.
— article with q&a with the artist’s widow, Juliet Man Ray

“Lee Miller, Photographer.” West Art, October 12, 1990.
— at one time of another I saw Anthony Penrose, the artist’s son, speak in San Francisco

“Paul Klee: The Bauhaus Years.” West Art, September 28, 1990.

Radiant Silhoutte: New and Selected Work 1974-1988, by John Yau.” Small Press, October, 1988.
— book review

“Jim Dine Drawings, 1973-1987.” West Art, September 14, 1990.
— I remember meeting the artist

“Skin-Deep Bio of Marianne Moore.” San Francisco Chronicle, August 26, 1990.
— book review

“Lee Friedlander Photography in Two Exhibitions.” West Art, August 24, 1990.
— I remember meeting the artist

“A Suitcase of Soviet Satire.” San Francisco Chronicle, August 12, 1990.
— book review of The Suitcase by the Russian writer Sergei Dovlatov, who I had met back in 1984

“Photographer focuses on social landscapes.” Montclarion, August 7, 1990.

“de Young shows art from 19th century.” Marin Independent Journal, July 17, 1990.

“Exhibit: Photographer Minor White.” Berkeley Tri-City Post, July 1, 1990.

“Interview with Jackson Mac Low.” Five Fingers Review, Spring 1990.
— revised reprint: interview in San Francisco literary journal

“Paul Klee’s art explores man’s interior vision.” Montclarion, June 19, 1990.

“John Baldessari: An Artist’s Artist.” West Art, June 8, 1990.
— I remember meeting the artist

“Midwestern Stories of Yearning and Loss.” San Francisco Chonicle, May 20, 1990.
— book review of Stuart Dybek’s The Coast of Chicago; later quoted on the paperback release and in advertisements which ran in the Chicago Tribune

“Graciela Iturbide Photographs Show Magic Realism.” West Art, May 11, 1990

“The Bachelor Life of Mark Twain.” San Francisco Chronicle, May 6, 1990.
— book review of Mark Twain biography

“Treasures of American Folk Art.” West Art, April 27, 1990.

“New Vision focuses on breakthroughs in photography.” Marin Independent Journal, March 12, 1990.

“Early American Photography.” West Art, March 9, 1990.

“A Model Couple – Architect and Poet at Top of their Fields.” Noe Valley Voice, March 1990.
— profile of architect Cathy Simon and poet Michael Palmer

“Jay DeFeo Remembered.” West Art, February 23, 1990.

“Robert Mapplethorpe’s Perfect Moment.” West Art, February 9, 1990.

1989
“Thor Heyerdahl Tackles History’s Rocky Mystery.” San Francisco Chronicle, December 31, 1989.
— book review, one of a handful I wrote for the San Francisco newspaper

“Making a Movement.” Marin Independent Journal, December 17, 1989.

“Figurative art display saucy and engaging.” Montclarion, December 5, 1989.
— story on Beatrice Wood exhibit with q&a with the artist who inspired Jules et Jim; she kissed me on the cheek

“Piecing Together the Lorca Legend.” San Francisco Chronicle, November 12, 1989.
— review of Frederico Garcia Lorca biography

Marco SassoneMarco Sassone: New Paintings, Diane Nelson Gallery, 1989.
— introductory essay in gallery catalog (see pic >)

“Exhibit: Diamonds are Forever.” Oakland Post, October 18, 1989.

“Museum Shows Society of Six.” Montclarion, October 10, 1989.

“A Brief, Intense Flame.” San Francisco Chronicle, August 20, 1989.
— book review of a Sylvia Plath biography

“S.F. Museum displays works of Paul Klee.” Marin Independent Journal, August 10, 1989.

“Diane Wakoski’s Textured Words.” San Francisco Chronicle, July 30, 1990.
— book review

“George Evans’ Streetfare Journal Puts Art and Poetry in Motion.” Noe Valley Voice, July/August 1989.
— profile includes q&a with the poet

“David Park Exhibit at Museum.” Berkeley Tri-City Post, June 4, 1989.

“Exhibition showcases Jewish Art.” Hayward Review, April 18, 1989.

“Inspired world of mad genius: Adolphi Wolfi.” Montclarion, April 18, 1989.

“Gino Sbrana at Museo ItaloAmericano.” North Beach Now, March 1989.

“Legion unveils Gericault show.” Marin Independent Journal, February 8, 1989.

“Exhibit: Granville Redmond.” Berkeley Tri-City Post, January 1, 1989.

1988
“Contemporary art according to Freud at Legion of Honor.” Montclarion, December 27, 1988.

“Giacometti exhibit shows his broad range of style.” Contra Costa Times, December 21, 1988.

“Artists tune into video revolution.” Marin Independent Journal, November 21, 1988.

“Australia is listening.” The Street, November 1988.
— interview with poet August Kleinzahler

“Exhibit underlines the complexity of primitive art.” Hayward Review, September 2, 1988.

“Exploring the elements of Ellsworth Kelly.” Oakland Tribune, August 26, 1988.
— I met the artist at the time

“The Art of Seduction: Andrew Wyeth’s Helga paintings come to the de Young Museum.” The Street, August 1988.

Marco Sassone, Italian Cultural Institute, 1988.
— introductory essay in exhibition booklet

“Winslow Homer’s Civil War Art at de Young.” Piedmonter, July 26, 1988.

“Artist Wayne Thiebaud celebrates the everyday image.” Contra Costa Times, July 20, 1988.

“Joan Mitchell gets personal in art show.” Oakland Tribune, June 7, 1988.

“Eccentrics exhilarate in Japanese art show.” Marin Independent Journal, June 7, 1988.
— a handful of my pieces appeared in this North Bay newspaper

“Show celebrates clan of architects, artists.” Pleasanton Valley Times, June 2, 1988.

“The Macho Approach: Dalva, by Jim Harrison.” The Street, June 1988.
— book review

“Painting the Town: Four North Beach Street Artists.” North Beach Now, May 1988.
— profiles of local painters

“The Starn Twins: most original artists today.” Alameda Times Star, May 6, 1988.
— I met the Starn Twins at the time

“Psychotic Reactions and Carburetor Dung by Lester Bangs,” Berkeley Monthly, May 1988.
— book review

“Museum shows wackiest hats.” Marin Independent Journal, April 18, 1988.

“Diego Rivera exhibit shows his power, influence.” Oakland Tribune, April 5, 1988.

“Fin de siecle drawings show art world flux.” Oakland Tribune, March 29, 1988.

“Brian Eno seeks mood by painting with video.” Contra Costa Times, March 31, 1988.
— I recall seeing Brian Eno at the press conference

“Fin de siecle drawings show art world flux.” Oakland Tribune, March 29, 1988.

“Joan Miro’s artistic vision as seen in his sketchbooks.” Oakland Tribune, March 15, 1988.
— a number of my pieces appeared in this East Bay newspaper

“Julian Schnabel’s deep image.” San Francisco Progress, February 19, 1988.

“John Graham: modern art’s little known synthesizer.” Oakland Tribune, February 2, 1988.

“Marc Chagall makes the ordinary poetic.” Contra Costa Times, January 13, 1988.

“Robinson Jeffers: A Continuing Presence.” San Francisco Review of Books, January 1988.
— article and q&a with Pulitzer Prize winners William Stafford and Robert Hass

1987
“Anderson Collection a wealth of graphic mediums.” Contra Costa Times, October 4, 1987.
— a number of my pieces appeared in this East Bay newspaper

Georgia Stone displays talents of Margaret Jenkins, Yoko Ono.” Contra Costa Times, September 24, 1987.
— review of dance piece with soundscape by Yoko Ono

“Swiss Architect has one-man show in SF.” Contra Costa Times, August 27, 1987.
— about architect Mario Botta

“Exhibit is psychedelic hodge-podge.” San Francisco Progress, August 23, 1987.

“Utopia seen through the camera lens.” San Francisco Progress, July 19, 1987.

“Cabaret.” Contra Costa Times, May 20, 1987.
— theater review; widely quoted in the ad campaign (see pic >)

“When ‘make-it-new’ guided world of art.” San Francisco Progress, April 19, 1987.
— my first piece in this now defunct San Francisco newspaper

1986
“Jackson Mac Low.” Burning World, July / August 1986.
— interview in literary ‘zine with the noted experimental writer; later reprinted

1985
“Violent Femmes’ show may be one of the best.” Lansing State Journal, May 30, 1985.
— concert review; the last of nine pieces I wrote for the LSJ

“David Byrne’s antics make Sense.” Lansing State Journal, April 27, 1985.
— film review

“Love Tractor, Rhythm Corp to perform at Rick’s Cafe.” Lansing State Journal, April 6, 1985.
— I remember having dinner with Love Tractor, an Athens, Georgia based band who were contemporaries of R.E.M.

Kostelanetz, Richard, “Epiphanies.” Red Cedar Review, Spring 1985.
— at the author’s suggestion, I edited & arranged a selection of Kostelanetz’s experimental text; upon publication, he wrote to me stating he felt my efforts were too (John) Cage-ian

“Canadian Perspectives: Conversation with Robert Kroetsch and Eli Mandel.” Red Cedar Review, Spring 1985.
— interview piece in Michigan State University literary journal

The Collected Greed, Parts 1–13, by Diane Wakoski: A Review.” Red Cedar Review, Spring 1985.
— book review

“Catching Up a Bitter Buddhist: An Interview with Allen Ginsberg.” Red Cedar Review, Spring 1985.
— my first full interview with the famed Beat poet

“Primitivism traced in Detroit art show.” Lansing State Journal, February 28, 1985.
— review of exhibit at Detroit Institute of Arts

“French poet’s film reflects a dream.” State News, February 14, 1985.
— about Jean Cocteau

“Beat generation poet talks about his work.” State News, February 14, 1985.
— includes q&a
with Allen Ginsberg

The Good Fight tells vet’s story.” State News, January 18, 1985.
— review of documentary film about the Spanish Civil War

“Eugene Atget’s photos are garden of details.” State News, January 4, 1985.
— review of exhibit at Detroit Institute of Arts

1984
“Glenn Branca’s metal symphony.” State News, November 29, 1984.
— record review; I still have this cassette-only release

“Should aging theaters be saved?” State News, October 19, 1984.
— feature story on the Fox Theater in Detroit

“Gloria Steinem speaks out on Reagan, porn and ERA.” State News, October 19, 1984.
— contributed to this piece, includes q&a with the famed feminist

“Kate Clinton makes waves with feminist comedy.” State News, October 18, 1984.
— includes q&a with the feminist comedian

“Ed Sanders speaks out on poetry, the Fugs.” State News, October 18, 1984.
— profile & interview with the writer and musician

“John Irving speaks out in Ann Arbor.” State News, October 9, 1984.
— feature on the novelist

“Harry Callahan’s personal vision.” State News, October 1, 1984.
— includes a rare q&a with the acclaimed photographer; quoted in Harry Callahan: New Color – Photographs, 1978-1987 (Hallmark, 1988)

You’re a Hook LP collects Dial-A-Poem’s impressive history.” State News, October 9, 1984.
— includes q&a with performance poet John Giorno

“Susan Rothenberg at DIA.” State News, September 20, 1984.
— review of exhibit at Detroit Institute of Arts

“A Look inside a poet’s world.” State News, September 2, 1984.
— interview with acclaimed poet Diane Wakoski

“Polish art in Detroit.” State News, August 22, 1984.
— review of exhibit at Detroit Institute of Arts

“Lenny’s comic legacy.” State News, August 6, 1984.
— interview with Kitty Bruce, daughter of comic Lenny Bruce

“Max Weinberg on The Big Beat.” State News, July 27, 1984.
— interview with Bruce Springsteen’s drummer

“Cheap Culture in Focus.” State News, July 9, 1984.
— my first book review, of Two Bit Culture: The Paperbacking of America

“Laurie Anderson in Ann Arbor.” State News, May 18, 1984.
— article

“Anderson’s avant-garde vision.” State News, May 18, 1984.
— interview with the acclaimed performance artist later married to Lou Reed

Clash article“Clash in Detroit.” State News, May 10, 1984.
— concert review; the UK band fronted by Joe Strummer “approved” and autographed my article a when I met them backstage (see pic >)

“Rock in a hard place by The Plastic People.” State News, May 7, 1984.
— about the legendary Czech rock band known as The Plastic People of the Universe; for this piece, I spoke with one-time band member (and author & translator) Paul Wilson

“Flash of British Energy.” State News, May 4, 1984.
— concert review of show by the band Modern English

“Museum Holds Mini Car Expo.” Old Cars Weekly, April 19, 1984.
— written while working as an intern at the R.E. Olds Museum in Lansing, MI

“Artist reveals flaws in the fabric.” State News, April 6, 1984.
— profile/interview with artist Sue Coe

“Artists in Exile.” State News, March 30, 1984.
— article, includes q&a with the future Nobel Prize winning Russian poet Joseph Brodsky; (dancer Mikhail Baryshnikov, and dissident Russian novelists Sasha Sokolov and Sergei Dovlotov were also present, as was Ardis publisher Carl Proffer)

“Yoko Ono gives life to a symbol on Honey LP.” State News, March 8, 1984.
— a record review, and my first published newspaper article; the first piece I submitted, a profile of a Chilean folk singer, was not published

 

Unknown essay, Notre Dame High School newspaper, 1979.
— I was a high school senior, and wrote a short prose piece for my high school newspaper; this was published under the pseudonym Silas Tomkyn Cumberbatch, a nom-de-plume of Samuel Taylor Coleridge, whose poetry I was then reading. Oh, “The Rime of the Ancient Mariner.” Unfortunately, I don’t have copy of this essay, but wish I did.