Artist Hal Boyd makes ‘art that is mine’

By Ana Preger Hart
Posted on May 23, 2023

Baltimore artist Hal Boyd’s paintings give observers the feeling that they’re in a dream: People dressed to the nines are waltzing in the moonlight while a gazelle looks on nearby (“Gazelle,” 2012); a bride and groom pose for a traditional wedding portrait, while candles dance behind the bride and two ghostly figures kiss in the background (“Bride & Groom,” 1989);... READ MORE

Finding nostalgia in your nearby grocery

By Bob Levey
Posted on May 09, 2023

These days, grocery shopping can and will take you far beyond groceries. Need nylons? Birthday cards? Blue jeans? A lunchbox festooned with cartoon characters? Your friendly local store has them all. Not to mention sushi, exotic white wine and Advil (could there be a connection?). But the other day, as I trundled through the cleansers aisle, I spied an item that made my rotten... READ MORE

Books reveal untold World War II stories

By Dinah Rokach
Posted on May 04, 2023

The Bibliophile Even today, remarkable tales about the Second World War are emerging. These books shed light on lesser-known aspects of the war and of heroes from the Greatest Generation. Immortal Valor: The Black Medal of Honor Recipients of World War II, by Robert Child, 288 pages, Osprey hardcover, 2022; paperback, June 2023 The Medal of Honor is the highest military... READ MORE

Alexandria’s corner jewelry shop endures

By Glenda C. Booth
Posted on May 01, 2023

It may not have the pizazz and glitter of Tiffany’s, but David Martin’s 800-square-foot Virginia shop and studio, Gold Works, glows nonetheless. For 33 years, Martin has designed, made, restored and sold jewelry in the modest brick building on the corner of Old Town Alexandria’s King and West Streets. “This store is my wife and my baby,” Martin said. Gold Works sparkles with ... READ MORE

Facing up to my limitations at a singalong

By Bob Levey
Posted on April 12, 2023

We graying (or gray) souls have all had one or more of these experiences: We attend a business meeting and we’re the oldest person there. We mention “November 22, 1963” in a room full of Gen Xers and are met with a sea of uncomprehending faces. We read “OMG,” “ICYMI” or another hip digital abbreviation, and we have no idea what it means. Now I have another log to... READ MORE

Ideas and advice for venturing outdoors

By Dinah Rokach
Posted on April 11, 2023

The Bibliophile Time to head outdoors and enjoy springtime. These books offer ideas for activities close to home. AIA Guide to the Architecture of Washington, DC: Sixth Edition, by G. Martin Moeller, Jr., 383 pages, Johns Hopkins University Press softcover, 2022 This comprehensive guide covers more than 400 structures of distinction in the nation’s capital. Whether you’re an... READ MORE

Surgeon lost sight and became a sculptor

By Margaret Foster
Posted on April 07, 2023

Dr. Matthew Kessler was working as a dental surgeon and teaching at two D.C.-area universities when he noticed changes in his vision. “It came on pretty quickly,” Kessler, now 88, said. “It looked like someone put Vaseline on everything.” Diagnosed with macular degeneration about 25 years ago, which blurred his central vision, Kessler had no choice but to retire. Although... READ MORE

Musical tells story of jazz, R&B pioneer

By Mark Dreisonstok
Posted on April 04, 2023

In the 1940s, an Arkansas woman with an electric guitar began playing gospel music in night clubs, and music has never been the same. Shout, Sister, Shout!, now playing at the historic Ford’s Theatre, is a unique and meaningful musical about her life. Written by Cheryl L. West and based on a biography by Gayle F. Wald, it is the story of Sister Rosetta Tharpe (1915-1973), an... READ MORE

A nod to my late penny-pinching friend

By Bob Levey
Posted on March 17, 2023

Which regular human activity reveals the inner truth about a person? Some would say driving, which can uncover hostility and entitledness in surprising amounts. Some would say the telephone, which can unmask just how friendly — or unfriendly — you really are. But my vote goes to the grocery store, in memory of a friend who died a couple of months ago. He was in his late... READ MORE

Teaching brings joy to poet, art instructor

By Tara Prakash
Posted on March 14, 2023

“When I teach poetry, I get more energy after the class than when I began. It’s the opposite of being drained — it’s being hydrated,” said Maryland Poet Laureate Grace Cavalieri. At age 91, Cavalieri is passionate about teaching poetry to students at different universities and schools across the country. “Younger generations are where the energy is,” she said. Cavalieri ... READ MORE