The Artist Beit Midrash gathers to study Torah and create art in the summer at North Suburban Beth El, Highland Park, Illinois under the leadership of Jane Shapiro and Judith Joseph. Barr's poems, collages, and installations have been shown in five exhibits curated by Judith Joseph.
Barr and ceramicist Judy Solomon have collaborated many times. Their work "Secrets" (at left) will be exhibited at The Art Center of Highland Park March 2020. Her poem "Calling" (see Photo Gallery below) was a collaboration with graphic artist and photographer Sam Bernstein and calligrapher Nessia Frank.
Her poem about Judith Joseph's grandfather "Woodcut of a Field of Wheat" was published in East on Central with Joseph's woodcut (gallery below).
Barr produced and directed plays—La casa de Bernarda Alba and Un crimen en mi pueblo.—at Lake Forest and Northwestern University with colleagues, David George and Penny Nichols (photo below)
Throughout her career as a Spanish professor Barr brought prominent writers to read their work and give seminars to her students.
For over a decade Barr has been a member of a weekly community poetry workshop. Along with DLP writers Jackie Harris and MJ Gabrielsen, Barr judges the annual Tenth Dems Poetry and Prose Contest for teens in Waukegan, North Chicago, and Zion.
Ellen Birkett Morris met Barr's father in a writing group in Louisville, Kentucky. Ellen says she inherited Lois and Lois says she inherited Ellen. Birkett's father wrote mystery novels,and Barr's father wrote legal briefs and poetry and drama after retirement.
Their poem was a prompt for collaborative writing in Poets and Writers.
See Ellen as a baby with her father John Birkett in gallery below.
photos clockwise: Louisville writer Ellen Birkett Morris held by her father; Calling; Woodcut of a Field of Wheat by Judith Joseph; Penny Nichols and Barr at Northwestern University; Ani Shua at Lake Forest College; Barr with Writers Workshop member Mare Swallow. Center: members of Artist Beit Midrash