The San Mateo County Board of Supervisors has appointed Montara resident Caroline Goodwin as its first poet laureate. She officially takes on the two-year role Jan. 1.

Goodwin, who is originally from Anchorage, Alaska, has lived in San Mateo County since 1999, when she was a Wallace Stegner Fellow in Poetry at Stanford University. She earned an MFA in creative writing from the University of British Columbia.

She is now a professor in the master of fine arts writing and undergraduate writing and literature programs at California College of the Arts. She also teaches workshops offered by the Stanford Writer's Studio.

Goodwin says she is looking forward to exploring and celebrating the role of poetry in our lives. "Poetry is rhythm, poetry is music, poetry has many histories and roots and can act as a healer in our turbulent times," she says.

Supervisor Warren Slocum, who is a co-leader of the San Mateo County Poet Laureate Advisory Committee, said that all 15 nominees for the post "were amazing poets, which speaks to the thriving literary arts community in our county." He adds that Goodwin "will greatly enhance the art of the spoken word."

Fellow co-leader Supervisor Carole Groom agrees. "Our new poet laureate will inspire us with her wonderful poetry, as well as elevate this art form, giving it an inclusive voice and a visible presence in our day to day lives."


Advertisement

I am happy to be a member of the Poet Laureate Advisory Committee, along with California Poet Laureate Juan Felipe Herrera; Jackie Berger from Notre Dame de Namur University; East Palo Alto Poet Laureate Kalamu Chaché; Maryann Moise Derwin of the San Mateo County Library Governing Board and Portola Valley Town Council; Anne-Marie Despain, director of library services for the county; Julie Fellers of the Peninsula Arts Council; Mary Gutierrez from Skyline College; local business advocate Clark Kepler; Bardi Rosman Koodrin, literary director of the San Mateo County Fair; County Arts Commissioner Donald Mulliken; and California Writers Club President Christopher Wachlin.

Although Goodwin doesn't officially begin her role until Jan. 1, she will be one of the featured readers at a free poetry reading sponsored by City Arts of San Mateo from 7 to 9 p.m. on Oct. 24 at Kaffeehaus, 92 E. Third Ave., San Mateo. The other two featured readers are Kalamu Chaché and young poet John (Jack) Herrera, an Aragon High School student who won the Literary Grand Prize in City Arts' High School Arts Recognition Program this past spring.

To learn more, go to www.cityartsofsanmateo.org. For more information on the Poet Laureate Advisory Committee, contact Slocum at 650-363-4570 or email wslocum@smcgov.org.

Silent or small

Artists Arup Biswas and Arena Shawn are featured in the exhibit "Silent Light Small Wonders," which opens Wednesday at The Main Gallery in Redwood City. A reception with the artists will be held from 4 to 6 p.m. Oct. 19.

Biswas, a photographer, has chosen works that share a natural landscape theme. Shawn, a watercolorist, has created small-scale paintings which center on beauty found in focused observation.

The show will be on view through Nov. 17. The Main Gallery is at 1018 Main St., Redwood City. Hours are 10 a.m.-3 p.m. Wednesdays through Sundays. Call 650-701-1018 or go to www.themaingallery.org.

Curl's watercolors

The Portola Art Gallery presents watercolor paintings by Steve Curl through Oct. 31. A reception for "The Watercolor Landscape" is presented from 1 to 4 p.m. Saturday.

Curl, the editorial cartoonist for the Palo Alto Daily News, has taught watercolor painting at the Pacific Art League of Palo Alto since 1991. For his artistic work, he draws inspiration from his travels and local hikes.

The gallery is at the Allied Arts Guild, 75 Arbor Road, Menlo Park. Hours are 10 a.m.-5 p.m. Mondays through Fridays. Call 650-321-0220 or go to www.portolaartgallery.com.

Twin Pines

The autumn show at the Twin Pines Manor House presents work by Peggy Dean, Terry Harms, Nancee McDonell, Yvonne Newhouse, Suha Noursi, Mae Perlson, Jan Prisco, Linda Salter, Melissa Wilson and Nancy Woods.

A reception for the show will be held from 2 to 4 p.m. Sunday. The exhibit is on view through Oct. 31 at 10 Twin Pines Lane, Belmont. Hours are noon-4 p.m. Wednesdays through Sundays.

Open Studios

The 25 artists at the Sanchez Art Center are holding Open Studios this weekend. You can chat with the local artists and purchase works as well.

Hours are 1-5 p.m. Saturday and Sunday. The Sanchez Art Center is at 1220 Linda Mar Blvd., Pacifica. Call Charlotte Seekamp at 650-588-7846 or email artistcharlotte@yahoo.com.

Information on visual and literary arts can be sent to Bonny Zanardi at bzanardi@aol.com.