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PAM Jam: New exhibit opens in St. Augustine combining art, poetry and music

PAM stands for poets, artists, and musicians. About 60 artists have been working together over 2020 to create art collaboratively.

ST. AUGUSTINE, Fla. — We are better together. It’s a message we hear in politics that translates into our lives in many ways. 

In St. Augustine, artists of all mediums have taken that phrase and collaborated over the course of 2020. 

This is PAM Jam. PAM stands for poets, artists and musicians. You can see the artwork, read a poem that was influenced and inspired by it, and then scan a QR code to hear original music by a local artist. It’s a new way to experience art.

There are 14 pieces in the Butterfield Garage Gallery. There will eventually be 18 pieces total for the first PAM Jam as several artists finish up their work. The art will be on display for the month of November at Butterfield. 

Poet Loretta Leto coordinated PAM Jam gathering about 60 total poets, artists, and musicians together to collaborate on a piece. In a group of three, they created.

“Each individual thing was great but then as you start putting together, and especially when you started adding music, it just took the artistic experience to another level," Leto said. "We’re better together!"

In the piece called Shrine, poet Ben Atkinson wrote “How many nights will we sit by candlelight, each of us, alone, thinking”. It sounds like social distancing. 

Poet coordinator for PAM Jam Chris Bodor says artists often react and create based on the world around them. He says this has been the perfect pandemic project.

“When there is heartache, frustration, atrocities, the artist is going to react," Bodor said. "Whether it is a song or a painting or a poem, look at Bob Dylan what he was able to do with words. Look at John Lennon."

Leto says PAM Jam debuted virtually so you can watch and listen online. 

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