On Sunday, November 16th, I met with families participating in the "Lines and Circles" project--the educational and community outreach project than spans my tenure as poet laureate. The project brings together three generations of Santa Families to create family "works," culminating in a exhibition in 2010. Each family work will be accompanied by a poem written by the family, by me, or by the family and me, together.
During the meeting, family members continued to brainstorm ideas for their pieces, sketching preliminary designs and generating lists of materials and assistance needs. They are also completing a family history questionnaire and generating ancestral maps.
It is a joy to watch family members of different generations share ideas, collaborate, negotiate. And it is a pleasure to see the families get to know each other.
I will keep you posted, as the months pass, and offer more details about specific family works. For now, a brief preview: a travel chest commemorating three generations of women in one family; accordion book with family stories; dinner table (in the family for many generations) with place settings for surviving family members and ancestors; a three-generation handmade quilt; a hanging "tapestry" of hand-made books of different sizes, one for each family member (including ancestors); a video installation with hand and handwriting imagery; a family history told by images of family-built houses. Exciting, yes?
It is a privilege to work with these wonderful Santa Feans.
There is still room for 1 or 2 additional families to participate in the project. If you are interested and have three generations of your family living in Santa Fe, please contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org. You do not need to be artists, nor have any particular expertise.