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Through These Realities, Collaborative Works of Poetry & Photography

Through These Realities, Collaborative Works of Poetry & Photography

1 Davis Square, Somerville

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As in year’s past the Somerville Arts Council’s Inside-Out Gallery exhibit for mid-summer has typically coincided and been inspired by the ArtBeat theme. While ArtBeat is for only one day, the essence of this year's theme "rise" lives on and continues to elevate important conversations. As such, we are thrilled to have such a diverse and eclectic array of talent showcased as part of this  initiative-- a dynamic collaboration of the power of poetry through visual expression by bringing poets and photographers together. 

Curated by Joshua Sarinana, Through These Realities challenges the narratives of mass media that invalidate the experiences of people of color through the interactions of poetry and photography. Six photographers of color have created a series of images inspired by work from six poets of color. These images incorporate the figurative and literal visual elements related to associated poetry—prompted by the following James Baldwin quote referring to the media industry:

“The industry is compelled, given the way it is built, to present to the American people a self-perpetuating fantasy of American life. It considers that its job is to entertain the American people. Their concept of entertainment is diffcult to distinguish from the use of narcotics, and to watch the TV screen for any length of time is to learn some really frightening things about the American sense of reality.”

As part of a larger exhibit featured at the Arts of Armory, artists use poetry and photography to validate their realities, reveal the discrepancies between the dominant culture, and solidify the normality of people of color living in the everyday.

Featured Poets 
Alysia Williams, César Sánchez Beras, Durane West, Isabella De Palo Garcia Perez, Kesper Wang, and Mayank Chugh

Featured Photographers
Adam Cordelle, Andrew Harris, Kenia Arbaiza, Paul Sayed, Wandy Pascoal, & Xudong Liu

Learn more about the project by visiting

About the Somerville Arts Council BIPOC program
The “Through These Realities” exhibit is a part of the Somerville Arts Council (SAC) BIPOC support initiative. 

During the Fall 2020 while Covid was at its peak, there was an overwhelming desire to find mechanisms on how arts resources could reach the community. Through this collective reflection,  the Arts Council developed a local Black, Indigenous, and People of Color (BIPOC) support initative. Since then, SAC has released $156,000 to the BIPOC community in forms of fellowships and project grants from various genres such as music, inter-related/multi-media, dance, film/video, visual art, and more. 

In 2022, SAC expanded this iniative and launched a Pop-up Art series at the Armory Building for local BIPOC artists to help support programming and provide temporary space to that community.  This program aims to provide a safe and vibrant space to be led by artists of color. 

Located at the Center for Arts at the Armory, the mission for this space to be used as a means for the community to connect with each other through the arts.  The space is intended for artists of all ages and levels to find support and growth -- an encouraging, community- driven space.  This space features new curators and concepts on a rotating basis.

For a full description and schedule of BIPOC projects & events visit:

About the Inside-Out Gallery
Initiated in 2009, The Inside-Out Gallery is located in the CVS Window in Davis Square, a unique space that allows the public to view an eclectic array of works from artists and local organizations each month. The mission of the Somerville Arts Council is to cultivate and celebrate the creative expressions of the Somerville community. Through innovative collaborations and quality programming we work to make the arts an integral part of life reflective of our diverse city.