Stephanie Pruitt brings em·bod·i·ment to OZ TNT

Stephanie Pruitt

Stephanie Pruitt

On Thursday, July 23, OZ Arts Nashville presents poet and social practice artist Stephanie Pruitt’s em·bod·i·ment: Poetry Through the Five Senses, as part of the contemporary arts center’s spotlight series, TNT. Using her poem Close Reading, which she wrote for this program, words move from the two-dimensional page and become an experience to touch, taste, smell, hear and see, as Pruitt collaborates with a chef, musicians, an architect, an aromatherapist, visual artists, and a new proximity-based technology to create a multi-sensory arts adventure.

em·bod·i·ment, which will fill OZ Arts’ 10,000 square-foot warehouse venue, offers a meditation upon the generative nature of art, and a uniquely rich exploration of how one creative expression often leads to a web of others. Pruitt’s point of departure for em·bod·i·ment was a question: What would it be like to be immersed inside a poem? To create the work, she distributed Close Reading to more than twenty artists, asking them to interpret it through their various disciplines.

Stephanie Pruitt never learned that art and business can’t mix. She is equally comfortable in her studio and at boardroom tables, but never settles for business as usual at either. Pruitt is an award-winning, published poet and visual maker who has taught arts education and creative writing at Vanderbilt University, Sewanee Young Writers’ Conference, and as a visiting artist in over a hundred k-12 and community settings. Over the past 15 years, while maintaining her creative practice, she has run an event planning company, art gallery, publishing firm, and social science research center. Find out more about her at stephaniepruitt.com.

Her collaborators include chef Josh Habiger (Pinewood Social); aromatherapist Whitney Simpson (Exploring Peace); landscape architect Mike Kahnle; alt-classical ensemble Chatterbird; Roy Hamilton of Aromagregory; BKON’s iBeacon technology; recording artists Curtis Fields and Joy Styles; and new original paintings by visual artists including Jamaal Sheats, Kristin Llamas, Randy Purcell, James Threalkill, Camilla Spadafino, Carolyn Beehler, Vince Herrera, Alice Shepherd, Joseph Love, Betty Turner, Megan Kelley, Erica Ciccarone, Charlie Huddleston, Larrie Brown, and an artist from Poverty & the Arts. Musical Performance Schedule: 6:30 PM – chatterbird; 7:30 PM – Joy Styles; and 8:15 PM – Curtis Fields.

Thursday Night Things (TNT) is an ongoing series featuring Tennessee-based artists. Feel free to come and go at your convenience, and enjoy onsite food trucks as well as the venue’s bar. em·bod·i·ment runs Thursday, July 23rd from 6 – 9pm at Oz Nashville 6172 Cockrill Bend Rd Nashville 37209. Tickets are $15 and are available at www.ozartsnashville.org/tnt-stephanie-pruitt/ Tickets include 3 musical performances, food samples from Pinewood Social’s Josh Habiger, and full a multi-sensory arts experience.

Close Reading

by Stephanie Pruitt

Ask questions both obvious and obscure.

Grow to appreciate the shadow and shine, how most simmered pots of good vs. evil are an unseasoned soup.

Notice what is there and not.

Notice patterns.

Notice what you notice.

Embrace the barreling grasp of fear that can propel, and the freedom of a blank page that can paralyze.

Know that scissoring backwards from the conclusion can’t pinky promise an aha, but proves you’ve survived the floats and falls & …ever after, remembering The End is an invitation to begin.