REEFKA SCHNEIDER, Artist, is the creator of the art work in the highly acclaimed ecphrastic books and traveling exhibits Borderlines: Drawing Border Lives / Fronteras: dibujando las vidas fronterizas and The Magic of Mariachi / La Magia del Mariachi. Reefka’s art work has been published in Writing Towards Hope: Human Rights in Latin America (Yale University Press) and many prestigious journals. She has had exhibitions of her work throughout the Southwest, including “Dreamwalkers” at the Michael McCormick Gallery in Taos, New Mexico, “Ekphrasis: Sacred Stories of the Southwest” in the Obliq Gallery in Phoenix, Arizona; “Daughters of Juarez” in the Parks Gallery in Taos, New Mexico, and “Borderlines” at the Brownsville Historical Museum, Texas. The Magic of Mariachi was recently exhibited at Hengyang Normal University in Hunan Province, China. Her awards include the Octavia Arneson Award in the International Art Show at the Brownsville Museum of Fine Arts and a special initiative grant from the Texas Commission on the Arts.
See Reefka’s full online art gallery at reefka.com.
STEVEN P. SCHNEIDER, Poet, is the founder of the MFA Program in Creative Writing at the University of Texas Rio Grande Valley (UTRGV). Professor Schneider, a member of the Texas Institute of Letters, has pioneered the teaching of culturally relevant literature at UTRGV and through his NEA Big Read grants developed innovative community literacy programming. He is the co-creator with his artist wife Reefka of two bilingual, ecphrastic exhibits and books: Borderlines: Drawing Border Lives / Fronteras: dibujando las vidas fronterizas and The Magic of Mariachi / La Magia del Mariachi. He is also the author of the poetry collections Unexpected Guests and Prairie Air Show. His poetry has been featured on NPR Morning Edition and in American Life in Poetry. His scholarly books on contemporary American poetry include A.R. Ammons and the Poetics of Widening Scope and two edited collections of essays entitled The Contemporary Narrative Poem: Critical Crosscurrents and Complexities of Motion: The Long Poems of A.R. Ammons. He recently traveled to Hengyang Normal University in Hunan Province, China for the opening of the exhibit of The Magic of Mariachi. Steven’s poems were translated into Chinese for this show and his work has also been translated into Spanish, Hebrew, and Japanese. His awards include five Big Read grants from the National Endowment for the Arts and a Poetry Fellowship from the Helene Wurlitzer Foundation in Taos, New Mexico.