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Events that highlight the Spreadlove mission

We & You: Kentucky Commission For Human Rights (Interview) - 2020
Black Boy Joy Review - 2020

A review by Keith Waits

Entire contents are copyright © 2020 by Keith Waits. All rights reserved.

“If people see me as an angry Black man, well, I AM angry!” In the post-show talkback, Lance G. Newman II spoke plainly what he and others had expressed for an hour with great range and emotion.


In a series of poems and prose pieces by Newman and others, the words themselves were plain but they arrived in evocative patterns and dynamic rhythms that captured the pain, frustration, and rage of the Black male experience, sometimes with acid humor.


The virtual production arrives shortly after a similar presentation of  Hannah L. Drake’s Fix It, Black Girl, and the two are clear companion pieces in this Black Lives Matter moment. The design elements display distinct progression, with a nice consistency of image and costume and a striking use of makeup to underscore the themes.

Ruckus Spotlight - 2020

Lance G. Newman II hasn’t let the pandemic slow him down. Riding off of Finding Black Boy Joy, a collection of curated poetry and nearly two decades of his own work presented by Actors Theatre, Newman is preparing for a role as Mercutio in Actors Theatre’s upcoming presentation of Romeo & Juliet, teaching virtual art and poetry workshops with Maryhurst, and honing his craft as an artist. A self-described introverted extrovert, he could be found creating art spaces across the city before the pandemic, hyping performers both new and old at poetry slams. Newman is a multidisciplinary artist, rejecting the divisions between poetry, prose, and visual art. For Newman, there is nothing more visual than the written word; his influences include Edward Lear and Shel Silverstein, artists whose poetry and illustrations worked in tandem, emphasizing the way that the written word and visual art work together. Combining biting social commentary, word play, social practice, and assemblage, Newman’s work is a practice in resistance, endurance, and pride.

-Anna Blake

Love In The Street "The LITS Project"- 2019

Love in the Street is a project by local poet and artist Lance Newman that curates a selection of poems by local poets that have been stamped into newly laid concrete sidewalk on 4th Street, between Chestnut and Broadway. The sidewalk stamps were implemented through a public infrastructure project in 2018. 


Love in the Street poems are place-based and adhere to a theme of "Love and Admiration." When writing their poems, poets were asked to consider the existence of love in their city. How did they first fall in love with the city of Louisville? Their answers are poetic summarizations of the admiration they have for the city and the places that mean the most to them. Whether deeply abstract or satirically literal, Love in the Street supports the writing prowess of Louisville residents while simultaneously providing a collective public artwork built into the streetscape.


Love in the Street reminds our citizens and visitors alike that love is a universal concept and a love for the place where you live is inherent in our lives. The experience will remind us that artists living in our city can influence and affect compassion. Love in The Street inspires the writer within us all and fosters admiration for the poet and city alike.


Love in the Street poems were selected by Newman, working in collaboration

with the Commission on Public Art and Louisville Metro Government. 

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