“Richard Blanco: The Art of Conversation” Introduces New Series of Dining Encounters
Series celebrates exceptional dining and conversation
Stella Holmes, president of The Brickellian, recently welcomed a dozen guests to “Richard Blanco: The Art of Conversation,” an intimate encounter with one of the country’s most celebrated poets. The luncheon, held at Brickell’s Four Seasons Hotel, the event’s co-host, introduced Ms. Holmes’ Art of Conversation Encounters, a series celebrating the age-old art of conversation in a world where face-to-face encounters are undervalued.
“In an age when we have more and more ways to exchange information,” Ms. Holmes says, “I feel we are in danger of losing the art of true conversation—to listen and to speak from our hearts about what truly matters.”
Mr. Blanco, who performed at President Obama’s second inauguration, spoke to invited guests on “The Importance of Poetry,” after which guests were encouraged to engage in conversation and share personal perspectives.
Art of Conversation Encounters bring together small, diverse groups of people from Miami’s international and local communities, from ambassadors and consuls to educators, journalists and artists, to enjoy “a beautiful meal with beautiful conversation,” said Ms. Holmes, a documentary filmmaker whose work explores ways of building bridges between divergent cultures through art and education. With the Art of Conversation Encounters, she is bringing the same dynamic to the dining table.
“I believe in the power of personal encounters among people of dissimilar backgrounds and experiences,” she said, “to promote greater harmony in our community.”
About Richard Blanco
Born in Spain to Cuban parents waiting to immigrate to the US, Richard Blanco was raised in Miami’s Cuban community. He earned a degree in engineering from FIU in 1991 and worked for several years as a consulting civil engineer before returning to FIU to study creative writing. In 2013, he was chosen as the fifth inaugural poet of the United States, and performed “One Today,” an original poem he wrote for the occasion. He has received numerous honors for his writings and performances, including an honorary doctorate from Macalester College, a Woodrow Wilson Visiting Fellowship, a Florida Artist Fellowship and a Bread Loaf Fellowship. He continues to write and perform for audiences around the world.