We are presently organized around a 7-member board driven by the productive energies of a visual artist/maritime professional and a writer/educator. We are not a membership organization, and prefer engaging the talents of diverse performers, writers, artists, and producers for varied projects. We welcome your feedback, news, participation and investment in the growth of our organization.
Our Treasurer and Mariner/Artist
Captain Thomas A. Grace is a licensed marine operator and sailor with more than twenty years experience in the field. His background includes sailing tall ships, ship restoration and outfitting, tugboats, and more. He has been a visual artist for more than twenty years, earning kudos for his designs. His photographs and DVD cam have been an essential part of our award-winning documentary work. He is also an experienced, certified instructor of maritime courses and a Captain of 500 Ton/Mate of 1600 Ton Vessels, Near Coastal, Sail or Towing. He has taught and certified hundreds of mariners both in the United States and the Caribbean.
Claudia the founder and creator of A.A.C.I. Born 7-31-1953 passed 12-23-2014
Place of Birth: Trois Rivieres, P.Q., Canada College/Institution Attended: Harvard University, Arts Administration Seminars, 1980 Education: Brown University, 1986, M.A . English/Creative Writing & University of Massachusetts Dartmouth, 1978, B.A. English Bio Claudia Grace is a poet/playmaker, writer, journalist, and producer. She is the author of The Other Side of Where I Used to Live and Write for Life. She focused her love for poetry and performance into work toward her M.A. in Creative Writing from Brown University. She has done production with Providence’s Rites & Reason Theater and served as poet-in-residence at Bristol Community College. As artistic director of A.C.C.E.S.S. Art Corp. International, a nonprofit organization dedicated to artistic, cultural, and maritime heritage, she has designed innovative, award-winning programs. She hosted the organization’s Word That’s Heard cultural documentary series, broadcast in 11 New England Communities from 2000-2003. Claudia currently teaches her Write for Life creative writing system in diverse arenas and provides editorial, translation, and consulting services for the public and private sector. She lives with her husband, Captain Tom, on New Bedford’s peninsula.
Artist Statement Literature, theatrical poetry, poetry itself must serve as signifier of the digressions between faith and technology, leaps between matter and spirit. The individualism of the American spirit struggles for an interior life and attempts to grab this from the empty space offered by contemporary stabs at solutions. We can research the news to interpret life as insignificant or beatific. The artist who gives permission for the incorporation of balance in the work saves the culture. Artistic creation is not only a symbol, a central image, but an echo of voices, of spaces, of quantum leaps of reality. Microcosm and macrocosm join in the rhythm, the word. Language is a way of sculpting breath. Articulations like these demand the full participation of our presence–our breath, our rhythm central to understand and decode the message of the Holy Spirit living in our world. Inspiration and expiration are grounded spirit and intelligence of the Poet who is standard-bearer of this flag.
Articles & Publications • Piece for Four Hands and the last supper, Wounded Warriors, 2007: 25-27, Freedom-to-Write Committee, PEN New England. • the love of the fish, BluePrint Review #27 (2011)—the collab issue (or: synergetic transformations). Available: www.blueprintreview.de • Steam, E. Hoagland (Ed.), Ocean Voices, An Anthology of Ocean Poems. New Bedford: Spinner Publications, Inc., 2012. 50-51. • The Other Side of Where I Used to Live, 1999, 2007(revised ed.), dramatic poetry and poetic drama (ACCESSPRESS, 150 pages) • Write for Life: The Workbook, 1999, 2008(revised ed.), creative writing method (98 pages) Production: • Word That’s Heard, 2000-2004, co-producer, cable television series of word spoken, written, and transformed via multi-media; documentation of performance and oral history, interviews with cultural activists—complete filmography at www.accessartcorpintl.org • A Romance with the Sea, 2004 (Seventhfold), a 57 minute DVD documentary of Cape Verdean-American mariner/shipbuilder • Pouls De L’Histoire, 2002 (ACCESS Art Production), 2 hour documentary of the Festival Int’l. de la Poésie, Trois-Rivières, Québec • The First Hundred Years, 1995 (ACCESS Art Production), 2 hour documentary of multi-cultural, interpretive Centennial Celebration for historic Tall Ship Ernestina/Effie M. Morrissey • The Miracle of Why We’re Here, 1986 (Rites & Reason Theater) • The Burgundy Letters, 1985, 1992, & 1994, staged readings with the Yes! Ensemble Critical Reviews • http://www.southcoasttoday.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20081008/PUB02/810080413&cid=sitesearch Awards • Keynote Poet, City of New Bedford’s Whaleman Statue Centennial created commemorative poem “One Race”, 2013 • Keynote Poet for Marion Institute’s Connecting for Change conference, 2012 • Representative of Southeastern Mass. at Mass. Cultural.Council’s Poetry Festival, 2008, 2009, 2013 • Massachusetts Cultural Council, grant for AHOY! Maritime Kids’ Culture EXPO, 2008 • United Way Community-Building Mini-Grant, for EXPO Geomorph/Human Mosaic, 2008 • United Way Community-Building Mini-Grant, for Word That’s Heard DVD production, 2003 • Massachusetts Cultural Council, grant award for Word That’s Heard, 2001& 2002; for own work, 1991, 1994 • Lannan Foundation/Small Press Distribution, Lannan literary Videos, 2000 Who’s Who of American Women, 1996 • United Way Community Service Award, 1992 • National Council of Teachers of English, National Finalist, 1971