We’re excited to share with you the seventh week of portraits recently published on Nola.com, including Mr. Okra, John Kennedy Toole, Marie Laveau, Cosimo Matassa, Sister Stanislaus Malone, and Karen DeSalvo .
Mr. Okra, by Jeff Morgan
“When I was small, I used to hear my daddy and his friends. He did it all up in the Garden District. And down in the 9th Ward, too. He started off with a wheelbarrow, just pushing it. Then when the horse and wagon came out, he bought a horse and wagon. And in the 1950s, he bought a truck.” — Arthur Robinson, in a 2005 interview with The Times-Picayune (excerpt from Nola.com)
John Kennedy Toole, by Gabriel Flores
“The tragedy of the book is the tragedy of the author — his suicide in 1969 at the age of thirty-two. Another tragedy is the body of work we have been denied.” — Walker Percy, in his introduction to “A Confederacy of Dunces” (excerpt from Nola.com)
Madame Marie Laveau, by Queen Hope Parker
“Although Marie Laveau’s history has been very much sought after, it has never been published. … The secrets of her life, however, could only be obtained by the old lady herself, but she would never tell the smallest part of what she knew.” — Lafcadio Hearn, in Marie Laveau’s 1881 obituary in The New York Times (excerpt from Nola.com)
Cosimo Matassa, by Jeremy Paten
“Cosimo was the doorway and window to the world for us musicians in New Orleans. An expert, with a lot of heart and soul. When the Beatles heard Fats Domino, they heard him via Cosimo Matassa. He touched the whole world.” — Allen Toussaint (excerpt from Nola.com)
Sister Stanislaus Malone, by Alexandra Kilburn
“Don’t bother me, boy. I can’t stop. I’m on my way to take care of a sick man.” — Sister Stanislaus Malone, to a reporter asking about her honorary degree from Loyola University in 1936 (excerpt from Nola.com)
Karen DeSalvo, by Sean Randall
“We were making our wings as we were falling off the cliff. It’s not thinking out of the box because we got rid of the box.” — Dr. Karen DeSalvo, about the post-Katrina transformation of New Orleans’ health care infrastructure (excerpt from Nola.com)
Where Y’Art is the proud partner of Nola Media Group, the producers of Nola.com / The Times-Picayune for its 300 for 300 project, marking the tricentennial of New Orleans, running through 2018 and highlighting 300 people who have made New Orleans, New Orleans.