Beach Talks 2: Kristina Lee Podesva - Going Under: “John Marr & Other Sailors With Some Sea Pieces” & a Few Shanties For Good Measure

August 18, 2012

Part recitation, part listening party, Going Under takes inspiration from a reading of Herman Melville’s 1888 John Marr alongside a presentation of sea shanties and African American work songs to broadly explore coping in “sinking ship” times. In such a milieu, not unlike our own, Podesva asks what is or might be the artist’s relationship to society? Is this dynamic one structured by obsolescence or consequence, solidarity or passivity, camaraderie or alienation? How can we develop a practice that goes beyond basic survival to the articulation of demands and dreams?


This talk will depart from the evidence left in Melville’s story, published just before his death in 1891, and will encourage the development of new strategies and relations tailored to our own time and terrain. Copies of John Marr will be made available at the talk.


This talk is the second of a series of weekend talks and performances organized by the Or Gallery and presented on various beaches in the Vancouver area.

Participant Bios

Kristina Lee Podesva is an artist, writer, and Editor at Fillip. She is also currently Visiting Scholar at the California College of the Arts in San Francisco.