Artist collaborates with 75 Nashville youth to create a multi-faceted project culminating in a viewer-participation installation.
BACKGROUND While finishing my graduate degree at the Maryland Institute College of Art in 2010, I began developing a project called PLAY with choreographer Elisabeth Gambino and composer Jin-Hwa Choi. PLAY is a performance therapy, translating personality and conflict into movement patterns. Studying human relationships and boundaries through performance and animation, we hope to explore social questions involving power, space, touch, inclusion, exclusion, fantasy, and play.
PROPOSED WORK Deliciously Happy is an offshoot of my graduate research and culminates with a gallery show featuring partnerships with students from three Nashville-area schools: the University School of Nashville, Bordeaux Elementary, and Lead Academy. In tandem with sculpture students from Belmont University, students from each school will construct social issue-based stories and create coordinating performance paraphernalia. I will spend 6 hours working with each group of students on projects during workshops prior to the opening of the gallery show. Each workshop session and the final performances will be documented in still images and video.
During the Deliciously Happy gallery opening at Belmont University, performances will include projected animations and documentations that interact with costumes, colorful props, and stage pieces, demonstrations and an invitation for the audience to join in. Additionally, I will be creating artwork that directly responds to the work that the students create.
OUTCOME For me, this project is about showing how important art is as a tool to spark people into sharing ideas and working together, one that spans cultures, socioeconomic standing, and is widely intergenerational. Art making is transformative and helps people be receptive to new information and experiences, leading to positive change and personal growth. It's a chance for me to collaborate with students from all over Nashville, and applaud youth voice.
My goal as a teaching artist has always been to instill youth and young adults with imagination's creative potential. Playful, authentic, and meaningful explorations occur in atmospheres containing trust and respect, free of judgement. Community-based performance workshops provide this type of environment to people of all levels and abilities. The benefits of engaging people through performance open up new avenues for finding solutions, by engaging all members of society through active and artful participation.
SUPPORT Thank you so much for helping out! Your financial contributions will help to fully realize this project!We currently have 12 of the 24 workshops completed. Each workshop includes project supplies and a documentation crew. To finish the project, we need supplies for the remaining school workshops, we need to hire an editor to put all of the workshop videos together, and we need to schedule and reserve transportation for the students to attend the gallery opening so they can see their work and speak with the people attending the opening. Your contribution will help with culminating event costs, like installation lighting, projection equipment, community invitations, and viewer participation workshop supplies.
A portion of your contribution will also help to publish a book, including all of the lesson plans, example artwork, and documentation; and the student, educator, and community responses to the projects. This book will be made available to schools and organizations so that more youth can participate in performance-based workshops.
REWARDS Each of the items below will be included in the Deliciously Happy gallery show at Belmont University. In addition to receiving a pledge gift, every person who pledges and participates will be mentioned during the show, during a performance, or have their name built into the final installation.
$1: receive a handwritten invitation to the Deliciously Happy gallery opening and a link to follow the process online
$10: receive a fingerweaving kit, complete with a colorful how-to poster illustrating 20 possible uses
$25: receive a string of decorative fabric bunting
$50: receive a set of 3 hand-fashioned finger puppets
$75: receive a fabric wall hanging
$150: receive a limited edition, signed copy of the PLAY: a Deliciously Happy handbook
$300: receive a costume specific to the upper body and head, complete with instructions on how to wear it
What is Deliciously Happy? Deliciously Happy is a place where creation meets the subconscious, intimate conversations take place, teaching and learning occurs at every level, people are collaborating, engaging, and coming together to make things happen.
Have a question? If the info above doesn't help, you can ask the project creator directly.