Life Drawing

Helen Humphreys, Witi Ihimaera, Sayed Kashua, Eileen Myles

Life Drawing

Moderator: Andreas Schroeder

Event Number: 55
Tickets: $17.00

Life Drawing

Helen Humphreys, Witi Ihimaera, Sayed Kashua, Eileen Myles

Friday, October 20
10:00am - 11:30am
Granville Island Stage

1585 Johnston St.

The art of memoir draws from life but demands the creativity and perspective to know what to focus on and what to leave out. The spotlight’s aim can be as seemingly narrow as Helen Humphreys’ history of the apple, which gradually widens to become an intimate memoir of dealing with a friend’s terminal illness. Eileen Myles’ memoir of their beloved pit bull, Rosie, expands to encompass examinations of intimacy, spirituality, alcoholism and grief. Witi Ihimaera’s memoir takes in all his recollections of his early life in rural New Zealand and what it means to grow up Mˉaori. And Sayed Kashua documents his own life, as well as society at large, as he reflects on straddling two societies—Israeli and Palestinian.

Suitable for grades 10-12 and adults.

Event Participants:

Helen Humphreys


Helen Humphreys is a poet and writer. She has written six novels, four poetry books and two works of creative non-fiction. Her last novel, The Evening Chorus, was a national bestseller and nominated for a Governor General’s Award. Humphreys was awarded the Harbourfront Festival Prize for literary excellence. The Ghost Orchard is a moving, well-researched work of non-fiction that delves into the secret history of the apple and how it is a symbol of settlement and ties between people.

Witi Ihimaera

New Zealand

Witi Ihimaera is the first Māori author to publish a collection of short stories and a novel. His work often draws inspiration from his upbringing and portrays Māori culture in the modern world. He is an accomplished writer of memoir, plays and novels. He has worked as a diplomat in the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in cities around the world and was a professor of Māori Literature. His book, The Whale Rider, became an internationally successful film. The first volume of his autobiography, Māori Boy, was recently published and details his early life and the myths that formed this fascinating writer’s imagination.  

Witi Ihimaera’s appearance is made possible by Creative New Zealand

Sayed Kashua

United States/Israel

Sayed Kashua is a journalist and author of four critically well-received novels. As a columnist for Haaretz, he writes anecdotal, tongue-in-cheek columns about problems faced by Arabs in Israel. He is also the creator of the popular sitcom, Arab Labor, and a teacher of Israel Studies in Illinois. His latest book, Native, is a collection of humorous essays exploring life as an Israeli-Palestinian and as a man delving into fatherhood, marriage, ambition, literature and prejudice.

Eileen Myles

United States

Eileen Myles is an award-winning poet, performer, art journalist and novelist with more than 20 books. In the 1970s they moved to New York to become a poet and learned plenty from the readings and workshops put on by the St. Mark’s Poetry Project. Later, Myles became the artistic director. They have toured throughout North America and Europe and have contributed to many publications such as The New Yorker, TimeOut and Paris Review. Afterglow, a collection of poems, is Myles’ love letter to their recently departed dog, Rosie. The heartfelt poems discuss loss and the bond between a pet and owner.