SFAI140 – a challenge, a joy, a connection

SFAI140* challenged me to step up to the plate. I have done speaking about my work before, but having to distill my thoughts down to 140 seconds and convey them succinctly with timed images, took it to a whole other level. It was fun and gave me a sense of accomplishment. I appreciated the opportunity to be on the stage with some real pros and to meet the other presenters.

It was a pleasure to discover that fellow speaker and historical preservation architect Shawn Evans was acutely interested in the Santa Fe Interment Camp. He took my 1951 map of the Casa Solana neighborhood that had the internment camp placement on it and layered it over a current map. The two of us walked through the area of where the camp once was, looking at trees that may have been planted there. It was a bittersweet experience wandering around with him and discussing his feelings about living in the area with this history. If I were to come back he thought he could help me with having talks in the Casa Solana schools and community.

Many Native people spoke with me about their experiences with the camps, including a young woman who was inspired to go see the marker and go to the other NM camps, and a man who said his Native uncle was picked up and put into the Santa Fe Camp because he was mistaken for being Japanese.

After hearing me speak a Santa Fe gallery invited me to be on a panel on healing war trauma with creativity.

Speaking from the heart, expressing  your thoughts and what is important to you, is a challenge to accept and seek out. You never know where it can lead you.

*SFAI140 is an event that Santa Fe Art Institute puts on a couple times a year. They invite their residents and leaders in the community to speak for 140 seconds with 6 timed slides.

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So sew why don’t cha?

Since I just got the sewing bug (another post on that – let’s just say it involved the Saul mother and daughter team and a cool recycled sewing teacher in San Mateo) I did some youtube searching and this group called Threadbanger came into my consciousness. They are putting out some great videos and here is one of them.

Some People Project

This week the theme has been story telling for me. I came across this great website called some people.

Here is how Harrell Fletcher, one of the artists who started the some people project explains it:

The idea is that people select other people that they know or would like to know and make a web documentary about them. The documented people need to be alive and willing and really interesting in one way or another (and not already well known). My hope is that eventually the site will become a vast archive of interesting people that you most likely otherwise would never find out about.

There are a few documentaries on the site already, but I’m hoping people will start to add more and more–revealing otherwise hidden lives and creating new documentary approaches within the public space of the web.

The plan is that eventually there will also be Some People exhibitions, publications, radio pieces, and video screenings selected from the ever growing content on the Some People site.

Check it out. I found the stories very charming and interesting. Who knows, maybe I’ll put some up of my own about my favorite interesting people in Half Moon Bay!

Mami Wata show features Hodges’ Watertime

mw121.jpgBeautiful and seductive, protective yet dangerous, the water spirit Mami Wata (Mother Water) is celebrated throughout much of Africa and the African Atlantic. Often portrayed as a mermaid, a snake charmer, or a combination of both, she and the “school” of related African water spirits all honor the essential, sacred nature of water. Experience the debut of this multimedia exhibition and explore the visual cultures and histories of Mami Wata through a dynamic presentation of the rich array of arts surrounding her—sculpture, paintings, masks, posters, and more from west and central Africa, the Caribbean, Brazil, and the United States. Let Mami Wata beguile you as she has done to peoples across the globe for centuries!

The exhibition opens with a large video projection by artists David and Hi-jin Hodge called Watertime, to bring the ocean—so sacred to Mami Wata—into the gallery. Against this backdrop a selections of key object provide an overview of movements, images, and ideas that have played major roles in the arts for Mami Wata. These include African images celebrating ancient and indigenous water spirits, as well as global examples that demonstrate the transcultural nature of Mami Wata.

Mami Wata: Arts for Water Spirits in Africa and Its Diasporas
Fowler Museum, UCLA
April 6, 2008 to August 10, 2008
Reception April 5
More info click here