Tuesday, August 25, 2015

Portraits of People on the Move- Performances/Independence Mall

After all of the hard work that Jennifer and I put into the gallery space for Portraits of People on the Move, it was really awesome to see everything come together for the four performance nights of Supper, People on the Move.

One thing I really enjoyed about being involved with the Portraits of People on the Move project was all of the unexpected things I got to work on. Not only did Jennifer and I work on unanticipated things like sewing and light arranging, but I also helped dress the set for the opening of Supper, People on the Move. Even though it was a simple long dinner table with settings, a lot of thought went into our arrangement every night. We thought about things like how to balance colorful fruits with items made of metal and clear glasses (especially since the glasses caught the lighting in a really beautiful way). Another thing we took into consideration was the heights of the objects across the table. We really made a nice set up using glasses and vases to break up the flatness of all the plates. Every night before the performance we would complete this set up before the guests attending the performance were let into the space. Once the performance began the dancers cleared the items from this table.

After we had arranged our set up, Jennifer and I moved back into the Portraits of People on the Move gallery space where guests would enter to speak to people about the project. We set two tables in the center of the gallery with the books we had put created along with some questionnaires so more people could add their own stories if they wished. As people came in, it was really cool talking to them about the project and hearing what they thought about it. One of the coolest parts was when people who were interviewed and photographed for the project came in to check it out. One of my favorite moments was when two young women with extremely different backgrounds who had been interviewed began to chat. When I saw them at the end of the night they were laughing really hard and looked like old friends. They both agreed that they wanted to meet up again.

One really neat part of the Supper, People on the Move project was that one of the nights the performance was projected at Independence Mall the same time it was happening at Crane Arts. While Jennifer stayed at the gallery during the performance, I went along to Independence Mall. Once there I met up with Elise from Mural Arts to set up a table along with one of the books near the projection area. We also brought some of the questionnaire print outs to spark conversation and invite people to add to the book. This experience was really cool. I wasn’t involved with gathering the life stories at the start of the project for the book, so getting to talk to people in person was very rewarding and different then just formatting their stories.

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