10 March 2014

Beloved Wordsmith and Living Treasure Honored

howl festivalPhoto: "Steve Cannon On The Couch" © 2014 by Eugene Hyon.

STEVE CANNON NAMED POET LAUREATE OF THE  LOWER EAST SIDE HOWL! Arts Inc. is pleased to announce that Steve Cannon—Writer, Poet, Playwright, Teacher, and Sage—has been named 2014’s Poet Laureate of the Lower East Side (PLOTLES). Cannon will be featured at the signature Allen Ginsberg Poetry Reading that opens the HOWL! Festival on Friday, MAY 30.   HOWL! Festival will take place in Tompkins Square Park Fri-Sun, May 30, 31 and June 1, 2014. Visit Cannon’s work and life is part and parcel of the neighborhood. Founder of A Gathering of the Tribes, the iconic East Village Gallery and Performance  space, Cannon has been a local legend and East Village treasure for more  than twenty years.  Mentor and magnet to young poets and seasoned. Bards alike, his residence as salon has provided a nurturing forum for art exhibitions, poetry readings, musical events, and other  activities which showcase the East Village’s cultural history, energy, and grit.  For more on Steve’s remarkable life.

“Steve Cannon is the only admittedly blind gallery owner  in New York City, as well as the only Paid Heckler in town,” says Dean of the Scene Bob Holman, founder/proprietor of the Bowery Poetry Club and board member  of HOWL!. “When you walk into his gallery aka his living room, you know this is the secret  portal to the real Art World—as open, creative, wild, and outside the establishment as it's been since the days of the Beat poets and Abstract Expressionist painters.”

But as the neighborhood changes, artists and creative spaces are being displaced by rising rents and gentrification. “This is a call to arms,” says Holman, as Mr. Cannon is being threatened with eviction from his residence  and Tribes as an incubator of visual and performing artists may be shuttered. To help out, contact Tribes Here.

About Tribes

Tribes was conceived as a venue for underexposed artists, as well as a networking center and locus for the development  of new talent. The formation of Tribes was motivated by the thriving artistic community in and around the Lower East Side: poetry  at The Nuyorican Poets Café; performances and plays at the Living Theater; activist art at Bullet Space; as well as hundreds of artists trying to find and develop a voice in their medium and a place in which their work might be appreciated. Housed in a historic federal house built by the founder of The Nation magazine, (Hamilton Fish), Tribes is located on East 3rd Street  between  Avenues C and D.

About HOWL! Festival

Founded “to lionize, preserve,  and advance the art, history, culture, and counterculture unique to the East Village and Lower East Side,” the HOWL! Festival is a call to arms across time and boundaries of culture, taste, and creative expression. Named the Village Voice’s Best Outdoor Festival, HOWL! Festival is the quintessential community event celebrating the history and creativity of the EV/LES. The spirit of Allen Ginsberg comes alive as more  than 350 artists, poets, and performers, including youthful new talent, transform the Park into a participatory artwork  infused with the creative energy, flamboyance, and panache that’s the hallmark of the neighborhood. A three-ring circus of wonderment and amusement, HOWL! Festival is entirely FREE. Signature Events include:

•   The Great  HOWL! OUT LOUD Kids Carnival

•   Art Around the Park and Kids Around the Park

•   The group reading of Allen Ginsberg’s Howl

•   Riki Colon’s Men in Skirts

•   Chi Chi Valenti and Johnny Dynell’s Low Life 8

•   Soap Box Poets

•   The Beatification Station featuring dance and theater

•   And continuous performances on the Main and Kids Stages


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For further information, high resolution images, interviews contact MartinMPR Susan Martin / 505 685 4664 / or Norma  Kelly / 818 395-1342 /