Brittany Billmeyer-Finn is a poet and playwright living in Oakland, CA. She is the author of the full length title, the meshes from Black Radish Books. During her 2015 residency at SAFEhouse Arts in SF she directed her first play, the meshes an iteration in 2 acts. Her work has been published locally in Where Eagles Dare, Elderly, in the anthology; It is Night in San Francisco but It’s Sunny in Oakland, 580 Split, Hold: A Journal & her chapbook geraniums is published by Mondo Bummer. She has a forthcoming chapbook, Slabs coming out with the Tract Series from Timeless Infinite Light. More of her work can be found online at The Poetic Labor Project & Dusie #15.
Brittany Billmeyer-Finn’s Black Radish title the meshes is available at SPD.
Praise for the meshes
THE MESHES, by quadruple hyphenate Brittany Billmeyer-Finn (poet-playwright-community organizer-arts educator) is a creative four-part record of the author’s imaginative engagement with the films and aesthetics of the late Maya Deren (1917-1961). Deren was an experimental filmmaker whose artistic practice was influenced greatly by the Imagist poets’ belief that the best free verse conjures up for the reader concrete visual impressions and emotional experiences. This is exactly what Billmeyer-Finn’s work achieves: across the poetry, prose, polyphonic performance, and polyvocal bibliography contained herein, Billmeyer-Finn’s use of language is immediately evocative of the compelling images and salient issues inspired by Deren’s oneiric, choreographic, and nonfiction films. –Renata Jackson
In her ambitiously kaleidoscopic and looping book, the meshes, Brittany Billmeyer-Finn does not so much respond to critically reconstitute Maya Deren’s filmography via textual multiples but stage/transcribe her viewing as discourse analysis, love letter, situated autocritique, dream and meditation on violence. Composing intermedia translation against poetic essay, ritual reenactment against documentary, the meshes traverse Deren’s ouevre from the symbolist shorts to the late and incomplete documentary, Divine Horsemen: the Living Gods of Haiti, significantly centering the latter to ask what is iteration, invocation, invitation, implication? Or, how is the contemporary production of a modernist avante garde archive bound to racial voyeurism and witnessing in the service of whiteness? Or, what is an ethical witnessing/telling of such forces and the historical/contemporary forms of their making? the meshes is crucial, dialectical inquiry into these questions and a powerful choreography of the violence and possibility they open upon. –Trish Salah
Brittany Billmeyer-Finn has created a fascinating intertext to filmmaker and theorist Maya Deren’s films and writings, adapting Deren’s film style and language to generate a series of poetic and dramatic texts. In its intensive engagement with Deren’s films and writings, the meshes offers readers new entry points into those works. Consonant with the fact that Deren’s work is charged with the energy of unfinished possibilities, Billmeyer-Finn’s book extends Deren’s idioms into the present moment, such that it both movingly pays tribute to Deren’s oeuvre and expands on its complex dynamics to forge an innovative means of creative expression. –Sarah Keller