Year Five 2004-05
One of the biggest change that took place for our organization
in Fall 2004 was a new move from DiverseWorks
Row Houses, which donated a shotgun house to our organization
so we could continue presenting visual art shows, host writing workshops
and become part of a different community. As such, we started the
year with a housewarming celebration on September 9, 2004 at VBB’s
new home, 2519 Holman.
The official season kickoff was VBB’s annual season opener, Words
for Peace 3¡Incite Change! which
featured Mango Tribe, a Chicago-based group
Asian American women’s group that performed volcanic spoken
word, video, music and dance. The rest of the season as packed
with film, cultural narrative conversations, and performances
all centered around issues connected to oil, health, global peace
and the urgent need to incite change so that all citizens—in
the US and around the world—can have a voice.
WORDS FOR PEACE 3¡Incite Change!
September 25, 7:00 pm
General admission $8
WORDS FOR PEACE 3 ¡Incite Change!, Voices
Breaking Boundaries’ 2004-05 season opener, features Mango
Tribe, a Chicago-based Asian/ Pacific Islander American
women’s group. The lineup of performers includes Rubén
Martinez, Sue Sun, Lee High School students, Project
Row Houses Youth Drummers with Abubakr and images
by Kayte Young and David Graeve.
The show will address local, national and global change,
immigration and reproductive rights and of course, global
peace. There will be talks by local activists, refreshments,
drinks and much more. This event is part of the Voting
Machine, a collaboration between eight local arts
organizations. For more information visit www.votingmachine.org.
Cosponsored by Breakthough and DiverseWorks. Curated
by Shannon Garth-Rhodes, Sehba Sarwar, Oskar Sonnen and Michael
Cultural Narrative Art Series: Sonia
Wednesday, October 6, 2004, 8pm
General admission $5
Sonia Shah, author of The Story ofCrude:
The Story of Oil, is an author and independent journalist.
In this narrative, she weaves together a story of natural
and social history, petropolitics and petro-nomics, technology
and geology, making connections between would-be oil barons
from the American backyard to the corners of the earth-from
Labrador's forbidding Hibernia development, to Venezuela,
Saudi Arabia and the Nigerian River Delta-to the depths
of the North Sea and the Caspian. Shah’s first visit
to Houston, the oil center of the US, is of particular
significance this fall, given the upcoming national elections.
A book signing following reading. Curated by Michael
Matir Moina / The Clay Bird
Dir, Tareque Masud, France/Bangladesh. 2002. 98 minutes.
Friday, December 3 and Saturday, December 4, 2004, 7:00
General admission: $6.00
Museum of Fine Arts,
Voices Breaking Boundaries teams up with the Museum of Fine
Arts, Houston and Border Crossings radio show to present The
Clay Bird. Set against the backdrop of the turbulent
period in the late 1960s leading up to Bangladesh’s
independence from Pakistan, The Clay Bird tells
the story of a family torn apart by religion and war. Anu,
a shy young boy from rural East Pakistan (Bangladesh, as
it is now known) is sent away by his father Kazi, an orthodox
Muslim, to a Madrasah – or Islamic – school.
Far from his family and the warmth of his region’s
Hindu festivities, Anu struggles to adapt to the school’s
harsh monastic life.
CLOSING SHOW: Donna Perkins
Saturday. January 22, 2005
Closing party 5:00 – 7:00 pm
General admission: Free
Voices Breaking Boundaries’ Shotgun House
This closing celebrates the work of VBB Co-Founder Donna
Perkins at VBB’s shotgun house on the Project Row Houses
campus. Working from a model, and drawing at a very fast
pace, Perkins covers paper with lines derived from the figure.
Her abstract images rarely depict figures but her work leaves
a nuance of human form. Creating work with charcoal, graphite,
various acrylic mediums and gesso, Perkins says: “I
am concerned with gesture, with surface, with obscuring and
revealing prior images. It’s as if the painting is
a snapshot of energy, my energy, the evidence of a moment
in time.” Also a poet and playwright, Perkins is currently
enrolled in the University of Houston’s New Playwrights
Workshop taught by Pulitzer playwright winner Lanford Wilson.
Her play Bed will be produced in April 2005.
HIGH VOLTAGE: Five Years of Fire
Thursday, February 3, 2005, 8pm
General admission $6 (50% goes to tsunami aid through
In 2000, VBB held its first reading at a local bookstore.
Since then, VBB has expanded to a grassroots nonprofit with
an office space on the Project Row Houses’ campus,
it hosts regular multidisciplinary shows and it offers arts
workshops for adults and teenagers. High Voltage is
a celebration of the fiery women who have shaped VBB over
the years and it is also the launch and signing of Co-Founder
Sehba Sarwar’s new novel Black Wings. High
Voltage features readings by Co-Founders Marcela
Descalzi and Donna Perkins, Shannon Garth-Rhodes, and music
by Michelle Chen, with Nusrat Malik as the emcee.
Howard Zinn: You Can’t Be Neutral
on a Moving Train
78 minutes, 16mm, Color, 2004; Directed by Deb Ellis and
February 18-20, 2005, 7:30pm
Edorado Ballroom, 2310 Elgin, Houston, TX 77004
This exciting Houston premiere of Howard Zinn:
You Can't Be Neutral on a Moving Train documents
the life and times of the historian, activist and author
of the best selling classic A People’s History
of the United States. Featuring rare archival materials,
interviews with Howard Zinn as well as colleagues and
friends including Noam Chomsky, Marian Wright Edelman,
Daniel Ellsberg, Tom Hayden and Alice Walker, You
Can't Be Neutral captures Zinn’s participation
in the Civil Rights movement and the essence of this
activist and thinker who has been a catalyst for progressive
change for more than 60 years. As Noam Chomsky said of
him, “it is no exaggeration to say he has changed
the consciousness of a generation.” Friday’s
screening includes a panel discussion with local Civil
Rights activists. Cosponsored by Project Row Houses and
Houston Indymedia. Curated by Fletcher Mackey and
CULTURAL NARRATIVE: Maniza Naqvi
Thursday, March 24, 2005, 8:00 pm
General admission $5
As part of its Cultural Narrative Series, Voices Breaking
Boundaries will present Maniza Naqvi, a
US-based Pakistani novelist who will read from her third
novel, Stay With Me (www.samabooks.com), a
moving story about the trauma of torture. The novel promises
to agitate the reader into empathizing with the victim who
moves in and out of consciousness. A haunting addition to
contemporary fiction, this compelling work explores memory,
reconstructed and recalled, as a burden of choices. Opening
the evening will be Kokoy Severino along
with other Kayumanggi musicians who will
entertain the audience with Pinoy Rock. In addition, teen
student Marvin Caravantes will perform poetry
and there will be a signing following the reading.
CULTURAL NARRATIVE: Tariq Ali & Laura
Tuesday, April 19, 2005, 7:30 pm
General admission $5
Grand Hall in Ley Student Center
The 2005 recipient of the Lannan award, Tariq Ali was born
in Lahore (1943) in what was then British-controlled India.
He was educated in Pakistan and then at oxford. His opposition
to the military dictatorship in Pakistan during the 1960s
led to permanent exile in Britain. Ali is a longstanding
editor of New Left Review and has written more than
a dozen books on history and politics. His new book is The
Clash of Fundamentalism: Crusades Jihad and Modernity.
Laura Flanders is the author of BUSHWOMEN: Tales of a
Cynical Species, an investigation into the women in
George W. Bush’s cabinet. On the radio, Flanders can
be heard on The Laura Flanders Show (Air America Radio) and
Your Call (KALW 91.7 FM). Flanders writers for Tampaine.com,
the Nation, Ms Magazine and Znet.
View Photos from Event:
LA VOZ FEMENINA 4: Alicia Gaspar de
Along with poets and writers from Project Row Houses
Thursday, May 6, 2005 from 6:00 – 7:30 pm
General Admission: $5
Brown Auditorium, Museum of Fine Arts,
VBB’s annual team-up with Arte Público Press
features a reading by Alicia Gaspar de Alba,
author of her new mystery novel, Desert Blood: The Juárez
Murders, about a lesbian who returns to her native El
Paso to adopt the baby of a young Mexican woman but instead
gets caught up in the conspiracy surrounding the killing
and mutilation of young women along the Texas/Mexico border.
Gaspar de Alba has researched the real, ongoing crimes and
the conspiracy to cover them up since 1998 and in 2003 organized
a conference about the murders. She is also the author of
various works of poetry, fiction, and nonfiction. An Associate
Professor of Chicana/o Studies and English at the University
of California-Los Angeles, Gaspar de Alba is a native of
the El Paso/Juárez border. Also performing at La Voz
Femenina will be young poets and writers from Project Row
Houses. Cosponsored by Arte Público Press and The
Museum of Fine Arts, Houston. Curated by Sehba Sarwar,
Oskar Sonnen and Marina Tristán.
View Photos from Event:
VBB’s summer fundraiser and silent auction hosted
by Fernando Brave and Sissy Farenthold
Thursday, June 23, 2005: 7:00 – 9:00 PM
1206 Nance Street, Houston, TX 77002
General Admission $25 (gets you drinks, light meal, and fantastic company
VBB’s first art auction reception features works by
Amita Bhatt, Fernando Brave, Paul Hester, Terrell James,
Rick Lowe, Fletcher Mackey, Robert Pruitt, Beth Secor, Wendy
Watriss, Troy Woods and work by up and coming teen artists.
Meal catered by Michael McGuire and Ruthie Langston.
Retelling Histories: Local Teens Speak
Wednesday June 29, 2004, 7:00 pm
General Admission Free
DiverseWorks Artspace, 1117 East Freeway, Houston, TX 77002
A partnership with Project Row Houses and Youth Advocates
Local teenagers present break-dancing, spoken word, visual
art and much more as the end product of a month-long residency
at Lee High School. Students were trained in all disciplines.
Violence against women in South
Asia: The ground reality in Pakistan
Saturday, July 2, 2005, 1:00 p.m.
General Admission Free
George R. Brown Convention Center, Rm 306 A-F, 1001 Avenida
de las Americas, Houston, TX 77002
A partnership with Asian-American Network Against
Abuse of Women (ANAA) & Asia Society
Violence against women of Pakistan has been escalating in
the past two decades; Honor killing, Jirga (tribal
council) crimes, gang rapes, acid throwing are a few examples.
This event features a teleconference with gang-rape victim
Mukhtaran Mai along with other notable speakers.
Rachel Corrie: An American
Conscience: A Voices Breaking Boundaries
Cultural Narrative Documentary
Wednesday July 6, 2004, 7:00 pm
General Admission $5 (no one will be turned away)
DiverseWorks Artspace, 1117 East Freeway, Houston, TX
The screening of a documentary that follows the life of
activist Rachel Corrie, who was killed by an Israeli bulldozer.