100,000 Poets & Artists For Change
Just Buffalo Literary Center will present 100,000 Poets & Artists for Change as part of the global event occurring on Saturday, September 28. This all-day event will take place at Silo City (92 Childs Street along Buffalo’s riverfront), 11am-9pm. The goal is to place Buffalo’s literary arts scene on the map with writers and artists from around the world who are organizing readings, demonstrations, and art events on this one day to promote social, environmental, and political change.
This will be the second time that Western New York joins this global initiative. Two years ago, David Landrey, professor emeritus at Buffalo State College, headed an all-day campus event. This year’s organizers targeted Silo City as the venue of choice. Those massive grain elevators rising out of Buffalo’s rust belt horizon seemed the perfect backdrop to the event’s theme of change.
Once thought of as ghostly reminders of Buffalo’s glory days of yore, the recent resurgence of activity at Silo City—from Silo City Rocks and City of Night to Torn Space Theatre’s Motion Picture—reveal new energy and hope for a revitalized riverfront. What could be more fitting for the theme of change than these monolithic symbols of Buffalo’s proud past and promising future? Readers will take the stage inside these cavernous spaces, complete with spilled grain still strewn along the floors, their voices rising from within to celebrate those changes that have happened already and to speak out for change still to come.
Thus far, an impressive roster of local writers have signed on to perform their own writing or someone else’s as it relates to the theme; but there’s still room for more. Poets who are interested in participating can simply go online to Just Buffalo’s website (www.justbuffalo.org) before September 15. The final schedule of readers will be released on the JBLC website after September 23.
To commemorate this historic gathering of local talent, the Buffalo & Erie County Public Library System and the Poetry Collection at the University at Buffalo are inviting all participants to bring copies of their books to donate to both collections, ensuring that works by local writers will be available to the wider public long after this single-day event is over.
In addition, Just Buffalo has teamed up with Squeaky Wheel to curate an exhibition of videos and photos inspired by the theme of change. Vine and Instagram submissions—tagged #100tpcBuffalo—which illustrate ideas of change, transformation, peace, and sustainability will be displayed in installations throughout the event. And that’s only the beginning. There will be multiple musical acts including Ahavaraba, Goat of Arms, Pine Fever, and Dan Harper with the Magic Show; Talking Leaves Books and local presses will be selling books and printed matter; Lloyd will be slinging tacos and Amy’s food truck will be doling out their vegetarian-friendly fare and more. Finally, UB Art Galleries visiting artist Kamau Patton’s culminating performance, Float My Resident, is scheduled to drift past Silo City at the end of the evening.
This event is free and open to the public. For more information, visit www.justbuffalo.org.