Gordon Ball, professor of English at Virginia Military Institute,
will speak at 3 p.m. Friday, Oct. 16 at the Garden Cottage at Sweet
Briar College. Ball will talk about the influence the infamous
literary movement known as the "Beat Generation" had and continues to
have on American culture.
Admission is free and the public is invited.
For 28 years, Ball took informal photographs of poet Allen Ginsberg
and other members of the Beat Generation, the literary and cultural
phenomenon which has had a worldwide impact since its inception in
Ball's photos have been exhibited at five conferences on Ginsberg and
the Beat Generation and at one-man shows at the Southeastern Center
for Contemporary Art and other venues. They also have appeared in
many books, including Dennis McNally's "Desolate Angel: Jack Kerouac,
the Beat Generation and America"; Rick Fields' "How the Swans Came to
the Lake: A Narrative History of Buddhism in America"; Michael
Kohler's "Burroughs: Eine Bild Biographie"; Carole Tonkinson's "Big
Sky Mind: Buddhism and the Beat Generation"; Steven Watson's "The
Birth of the Beat Generation: Visionaries, Rebels, and Hipsters,
l994-l960"; and "The Rolling Stone Book of the Beats."
Periodicals, from the New York Times Sunday magazine and DoubleTake
whose fall l996 issue gave two pages to one photo to the Chronicle
of Higher Education also have reproduced his work.
Ball, the grandson of a portrait photographer, was born in Paterson,
N.J., and grew up in Tokyo, where he first took up photography. Also
an award-winning filmmaker, he's made 14 independent movies which
have been shown at the Museum of Modern Art, the San Francisco Art
Institute, Anthology Film Archives, the Guggenheim Museum and other
Starting at Ginsberg's farm in l968, he worked with the poet on
numerous literary and artistic projects, editing three books,
including two volumes of journals and the Pulitzer Prize nominee
"Allen Verbatim: Lectures on Poetry, Politics, Consciousness." He's
the author of "'66 Frames: A Memoir" and recently completed "East
Hill Farm: Seasons with Allen Ginsberg."
Ball has taught in Poland and Japan, as well as the United States,
and lives in Lexington, Va.
For more information, contact Dave Griffith, SBC assistant professor
of English, at firstname.lastname@example.org or (434) 381-6181.