WHEN: Saturday, July 21, 8pm


516 Central Avenue SW, between 5th & 6th Streets, Downtown Albuquerque



PUBLIC INFO: tel. 505-242-1445, www.516arts.org


Tuesday - Saturday, 12-5pm

516 ARTS invites the public to a free poetry reading with guest poets J.B. Bryan, Melody Sumner Carnahan and Mark Weber. Each of these local legends is a leader in both writing and publishing some of the best of New Mexico poetry in one form or another. The reading will include musical surprises - with poetry and trombone duets by Mark Weber and renowned trombonist Michael Vlatkovich from Los Angeles. Don’t miss this dose of inspiration from three of New Mexico’s poetry gems!

516 WORDS is an ongoing literary arts series presented in partnership with the UNM MFA in Creative Writing program. This event is organized by Lisa Gill, and marks the closing of two exhibitions at 516 ARTS -

Patrick Nagatani: Confessions of a Tapist and Attention to Detail (both on view through Saturday, July 21). Nagatani’s solo exhibition features his series of "taped" work created over the past 23 years incorporating the obessive and meticulous use of masking tape applied to his photographs. His attention to the "Zen of material and process" is the inspiration for the accompanying group exhibition Attention to Detail, featuring 12 artists from New Mexico and across the nation.


J.B Bryan is poet, painter, graphic designer, publisher of La Alameda Press, former bookseller at Living Batch Bookstore. He was educated in universities and otherwise in Iowa, British Columbia, California, and New Mexico. As a book designer, he has a gained a reputation for distinctive style and classic typography. As a 30-year plus semi-native, he and family have a funky, but lovely, existence in the North Valley, while his studio is in the village of Placitas.

LA ALAMEDA PRESS began on a kitchen table in 1992 and they are still at it. They are one of the southwest’s finest small presses who make beautiful books of artistic and cultural merit. Among their books you can find New Mexican authors plus kindred spirits from around the country, including well known Beat and post-Beat writers such as Andrew Schelling, Joanne Kyger, David Meltzer, James Koller, Michael Rothenberg, Art Goodtimes, and Anne Waldman. La Alameda Press operates in a world of Big Business similar to artisan farmers. In today’s industrial culture that which is, often, most important seems ignored or repressed. They think poetry strengthens the imagination as an antidote to corporate thought. Many, but not all, of their titles are poetry "because we believe poetry is an essential artform with all of its beautiful sincerity, various passions, brave experimentalism, and necessary wisdom." When one connects all the dots, a quirky aesthetic can be found which reflects a diehard sense of being part of a long tradition that thinks art is as integral as healthy food to living on our home planet.



Writer Melody Sumner Carnahan has six books in print and numerous works published in anthologies and compilations from

City Lights Review, Leonardo Music Journal, At a Distance (MIT Press), Factorial (Japan), Electra/Nonesuch, Zerx Records, Ke5tra, and others. She has worked with artists and composers for two decades to present her writing off-the-page as "performance novels," soundtracks for film and video, audio-recordings, and intermedia installations. Recently, Molly Sturges/Chris Jonas commissioned writing for live performance at SITE Santa Fe’s Biennial 2007. The Out of Context ensemble directed by Dino J. A. Deane interpreted Carnahan’s book, One Inch Equals 25 Miles, live at The Outpost, with a CD released from highmayhem.org. Carnahan received an Artist Residency at the Atlantic Center for the Arts in association with iconoclastic writer William Gass; KUNM’s AetherFest commissioned a half-hour audiowork, Dido’s Revenge; Morton Subotnick’s Gestures (Mode Records) features four of Carnahan’s stories; and Woody Vasulka commissioned The Maiden for his Brotherhood installation, NTT/ICC in Tokyo. Carnahan was awarded a Creative Media Arts Fellowship at ABC Radio/University of Technology in Sydney, Australia, where she produced The X, Y, Z of It, an audiowork broadcast internationally featuring the voices of Robert Ashley and Joan La Barbara. Carnahan has received acknowledgements from the Art Institute of Chicago, the NEA, New American Radio, NYC’s Experimental Intermedia Foundation, the Whitney Museum of American Art, and an Independent Publisher Award in Audio-Fiction for The Time Is Now (Frog Peak Music/Burning Books).


The most musical prose since Gertrude Stein."
– Kyle Gann, The Village Voice

BURNING BOOKS is an artist-run, weirdness-driven organization dedicated to avant-garde fiction, music, and art founded in 1979 by writer/editor Melody Sumner Carnahan and artist/designer Michael Sumner in Oakland, California. In 1989 they moved Burning Books to New Mexico, where they continue to produce art and books, posters, pamphlets, and audioworks, with an incendiary incentive to make our world more elegant and convincing. Recent installations include the Museum of Fine Arts and CCA (Santa Fe), MOV-iN Gallery and IPI (College of Santa Fe), Mills College, the San Francisco Center for the Book, Albuquerque’s Donkey Gallery, and High Mayhem Art Gallery. Motto: alere flammam, to feed the flame.

"With perfect design and perfect prose, releases from Burning Books are like a long ride in a fine mind."

– Zane Fischer, Santa Fe Reporter

www.sumnercarnahan.org • www.burningbooks.org


"I was born on a silent night, in a green luxurious meadow, where the first thing I smelled was daisies, and drop biscuits fried in bacon fat and the asphalt combine laying in a new freeway. They paved that baby, but! they painted it green! just in case. And I’ll eat fried chicken, I’ll eat it night & day, but the doctor tells me it’s hard on the nerves. Then I heard some honky tonk guitars and songs about how Texas is spelt with a T. And hanging my hat in Tennessee. That was Okiesville, California. Oh, with one thing and another, maybe it was my probation officer, somebody held a gun to my head and made me write poems. And now I’m all traumatized and can’t quit. You can hear all about it on KUNM (89.9 FM) Thursday afternoons where I illustrate my life with jazz music on the airwaves."

Zerx Records & Press promotes "roots music from the deep Southwest of the mind." Founder Mark Weber says, "We started Zerx Press in 1983 to publish poetry, mostly in chapbook form. Then along about 1995 we added the Recordings Department. Now, we’re Zerx Press & Records. We have 59 chapbooks and 72 CDs. All of the CDs are New Mexico sound artists & poets & jazzers & folkies & anything really. Except rap. We don’t do rap. We’re old school. There’s a lot of great musicians in New Mexico these days, and I’m merely trying to paint a picture of our times with these CDs. We must have easily a hundred or two hundred artists on Zerx (I’ve never counted, and I’m not going to start counting now). And the best news is: we’ve only just begun."



516 ARTS is a nonprofit, museum-style gallery in Downtown Albuquerque, presenting collaborative programs with museums and organizations in the region and beyond, offering free gallery talks, educational tours, music and poetry performances. 516 ARTS is made possible in part by the generous support of McCune Charitable Foundation, the City of Albuquerque, New Mexico Department of Tourism, and many New Mexico businesses including Bank of Albuquerque, BGK Group, Charter Bank, Coldwell Banker Real Estate, First Community Bank, First National Bank of Santa Fe, Goodman Realty Group, Grubb & Ellis, Heritage Hotels & Resorts, John & Jamie Lewinger, J.T. Michaelson, Mosher Enterprises, New Mexico Bank & Trust, New Mexico Business Weekly, Paradigm & Company, SG Properties, Stewart Title of Albuquerque, Sunrise Bank, and Technology Ventures Corporation. For more information, please visit