For FALL 2010's delicious offerings of books, art, food, film, and unique travel--check out the NEW ISSUE of our online magazine FEAST--you will not go away hungry-- http://www.feastofbooks.com/

Between issues, read our blog posts as we and our special guests share thoughts, ideas, and recommendations about books, art, food, film, and travel. We love to hear from our readers, so please post a comment! Thanks-- Rosemary Carstens, editor

SNAX ONLINE is moving during the first quarter of 2011 -- stay tuned!

Snax Online is undergoing a redesign and will be moving to a new location. Check back from time to time for a link. In its new format, this blog will cover a wider range of topics but also its usual five. In the meantime, keep up with what's happening in the world of books, art, food, film, and travel at http://www.FEASTofBooks.com --

See you in 2011!!

Thursday, August 14, 2008

Women on ice tell a vital story . . .

FROZEN RIVER is an unexpected gem of a movie. I loved it as much as I've loved anything in a long, long time. I first heard about it after it won the best feature prize at Sundance and was intrigued and excited to see it. It tells the story of two poor, desperate women (one white and one Mohawk) who smuggle illegal immigrants across a frozen river from Canada to the US in order to help their families survive.

A couple of days before Christmas, Ray Eddy's (Melissa Leo) gambler of a husband has run off with the money she was saving for a new double-wide trailer. Her sense of defeat is palpable. What she wants is simple: to give her kids a safe place to live since the trailer they currently live in is falling apart. She is desperate to get cash and meets Lila Littlewolf (Misty Upham) who introduces her to smuggling, a dangerous way to make some fast cash. Each journey across the ice is harrowing, never knowing if the ice will hold them. Their last run goes bad and they are forced to rely on each other and this bizarre relationship they have formed.

Melissa Leo is an actress you have seen in many movies (21 Grams) and TV shows (Homicide: Life on the Streets), who just blends into the background—which is a good thing. She's been the perfect supporting character. Incredibly, this is the first time that she has carried a film, and her performance is outstanding and Oscar worthy. What I particularly love about her is that she uses her face and age fearlessly to relay Ray's emotions and desperation.

Melissa Silverstein
Women & Hollywood
Twitter: melsil

FROZEN RIVER is written and directed by Courtney Hunt, and has won awards at the Nantucket Film Festival, the Provincetown and Seattle International film festivals, and the 2008 Grand Jury prize at the Sundance Film Festival.

Thursday, August 07, 2008

Straw appliqué extends tradition through innovation --

THE ART OF STRAW APPLIQUÉ arose in colonial New Mexico because the Spanish colonists wanted to replicate the old world marquetry of their homeland but could not get the rare woods or gold used by artisans in Spain. Precious metal was a rare commodity and the use of gold was strictly controlled. Marquetry is a term that applies to two different types of wood surface decoration—inlay and veneer. Modern straw appliqué combines the two, using humble, readily available materials—such as wheat straw, corn husks, and native woods—that when skillfully applied echo the delicate coloration and patterns of pieces created traditionally. The straw is cleaned and then cut into tiny pieces used to create intricate geometric or floral shapes and figures against a background of dark-stained wood formed into crosses, altars, boxes, and other pieces. The so-called poor man’s gilding has become an exquisite re-rendering of a classic style.

BERNADETTE MARQUEZ-LÓPEZ is a native of Santa Fe, New Mexico. She began working as a straw artist in 2003 after admiring the art for many years. She has quickly developed her own style and has risen to the top of this art form. She juried into the annual Traditional Spanish Market in 2004, which is held on the Santa Fe Plaza the last weekend of July each year. Bernadette is inspired by the subtle colors and beauty of New Mexico’s ever-changing landscape. She shares her life with her talented husband, bultos-carver Arthur López, and their two sons, Darean and Jeremiah. For more information and to see more of her work, Bernadette can be contacted at artplopez@aol.com.