by Chien-Hwe Hong
The first time I walked by EMW bookstore, I did a double take. Partly because I didn't know it existed, but mostly because the crowd in there was unlike any other I had felt, ever, really. So I walked into the open door. I was immediately embraced in walls bouncing off beats, people living it up, and a sense of community that I didn't know I was sorely missing until I walked into it. I thought to myself, 'I have to have soul sessions here.' I left that night feeling drunk off of a simple good time.
Weeks later, an artist collaborator friend of mine invited me to an art opening at EMW. Of course I made it fit in my schedule. Though it was a different vibe than the first one I walked into, it was still one saturated with a feeling of long lost family, of warm welcomes and of groundbreakingly unique individual artistry. My friend introduced me to Iris, their fearless program director and I told her about my quiet dream to host soul sessions at their gem of a venue. The rest is history.
What turns me on about the community there is the lack of pretense coupled with the raw dedication its members have in holding the space together through the power of love alone to create labored of love both individually and collectively. EMW bookstore is a diamond in the rough, a needle in the hay, a find so precious it's like drinking from a fountain of natural springs after being parched for years.
Moral of the story : go to EMW and find out for yourself how you will fall in love with the space and the community on your own terms. I know I did.
Keep your souls peeled for 1,000 Virtue's monthly Soul Sessions and Movement Labs (M-Lab) at EMW Bookstore.