The Haiku Foundation honors the work of contemporary masters of the dual art of haiga: visual image wedded to haiku. This month’s featured artist is Marlene Mountain.
Marlene needs no introduction to the haiku community — in addition to publishing one of the seminal books of English-language, the old tin roof, in 1976, she has been one of the most forthright innovators in the genre over the last 40 years. While some of her work and opinions have been considered outrageous — one-line haiku, minimal haiku, unaloud haiku, haiku featuring feminist and political content, her unwillingness to treat nature in the way prescribed by Japanese sensibility, to name but a few — most of her positions, and certainly her art, have been increasingly accepted and appreciated over time. Marlene’s background is in visual arts and over the years she has created images with haiku and haiku with images. Let’s call it “image haiku.”
This gallery centers on the theme of trees and our relationships with them, an issue that has been central to Marlene’s work from an early time (as evidenced by the range of this collection, from the late 1960s to the present).
The photo shows Marlene at the University of Oklahoma in 1962.