“Heart of Our City” Exhibition and Poetry Loop

CALL FOR POETRY and PHOTOGRAPHY

“Heart of the City” Poetry and Photography Exhibition and Downtown Poetry Loop

As part of a 2022 Minnesota State Arts Board Creative Support for Individuals grant, local poet Lisa Higgs will be curating a “Heart of Our City” exhibition with Threshold Arts. This project was recently expanded to include an outdoor Rochester poetry loop featuring these works throughout downtown Rochester, thanks to a Rochester Downtown Alliance Startup Event Grant.

Per her grant funding, Lisa will provide a stipend of $100 to fifteen Olmsted County poets and photographers whose work is selected as part of this themed exhibition and outdoor poetry loop.

Selected work will be exhibited in Threshold Arts’ new gallery at the Chateau this fall, with an opening reception and poetry reading on September 15, 2022. Poems and photographs will be paired for display on poetry loop signage placed in downtown Rochester from mid-September into 2023, starting and ending on Peace Plaza.

Submission Deadline for Poetry and Photography is June 20, 2022.

Submitted poetry and photography should focus on getting to the heart of our community as it continues to emerge from the pandemic. What songs can we sing, what praise can we raise, what thanks can we give for things in the world that seem to go right, despite myriad challenges we have faced recently and will continue to face in the coming years? Your focus can zoom in on small details or be panoramic in view, as long as it captures something essential about the greater Rochester area. Think urban or rural or in-between suburban. Be playful, serious, quirky, somber, or wise.

Selected work might reflect on or be an expression of:

  • what brings our community together—in times of stress and in times of joy?
  • what items or spaces or places show the strength of the greater Rochester area?
  • what people or histories or myths contribute to our area’s foundational stories?
  • what dreams or futures can be envisioned for a more cohesive and prosperous community?

Lisa will review all poetry and photographs at the end of June and will contact her selected poets and photographers by early July.

Poetry Guidelines

  1. Eligible writers must be residents of Olmsted County, Minnesota.
  2. Send no more than three poems and a cover letter in one document. Only one submission, emailed to lihiggspoet@gmail.com, will be considered.
  3. The cover letter must include: name, mailing address, email address, a 75-word or less bio, and the titles of the poems submitted. If a submitted poem has been previously published, your cover letter must include the publication name and date, along with a statement that you retain the rights to republish.
  4. Individual poems cannot exceed a maximum of 20 lines, including one title line and each line of white space (blank).
  5. Each line cannot exceed maximum of 45 characters, including spaces.
  6. Poems may be in any form or style, so long as they adhere to length and line limits. However, all poems must be family-friendly, with no charged language, explicit imagery, or overly adult themes.

Photography Guidelines

  1. Eligible photographers must be residents of Olmsted County, Minnesota.
  2. Send no more than three photographs for consideration, along with a cover letter in the body of an email. Only one submission, emailed to lihiggspoet@gmail.com, will be considered.
  3. The cover letter must include: name, mailing address, email address, a 75-word or less bio, and the titles of the photographs submitted. If a submitted photo has been previously published, your cover letter must include the publication name and date, along with a statement that you retain the rights to republish.
  4. Selected photographs will be printed 13×19 inches for the exhibition, so please ensure all submitted images are a high resolution (5 MP; 2592 x 1944 pixels), even if you initially submit the images to Lisa at a lower resolution due to file size.
  5. Photographs may be in any form or style, so long as they are family-friendly, with no explicit imagery or overly adult motifs.

Questions

Questions about the submission process, the planned exhibition, or the poetry loop should be directed to: lihiggspoet@gmail.com.