Unfortunately, we have no photographs for this blog entry. The campus library isn’t renting out equipment for the next month. Thus, for most of this week we were operating without a camera. Fortunately, yesterday we were able to meet with a professor who checked out a camera to us. I did take some photos last night, but forgot the camera at home today and can’t upload them. Which is unfortunate, because there was some great pics of Meg being super focused.
A picture speaks a thousand words. That said, prepare yourself for a long blog entry. I think I’ll shoot for 10,000 words to make up for the lack of pictures. Just kidding, I don’t think I have that much to say. But, I will try and give you some mental pictures of what went on this week for River Bend Art Project.
The first picture would be of a mother holding a weeping and distraught four year old. We were able to partner with Dana Reck this past Saturday. Dana Reck is a local art teacher who teaches an art class in the summer for a group of families. She invited us to make flood catchers with the group she normally works with. Unfortunately, we didn’t explain very well to one of the boys that the project we were making wasn’t something he could take home with him. We were finally able to console him by giving him an additional flood catcher that he could take home.
The second picture would be from Sunday night. Picture me stalking out of Meg’s house and taking a walk around the block. Don’t worry, its not as serious as it sounds. Meg and I decided to plan out the rest of our plexiglass drawings Sunday night. It worked out well for the most part. We figured out plans for the first four. We got stuck on the last three. We played around with different ideas for flood narratives, but weren’t happy with what we were coming up with. Our focus was interrupted when some friends came over. It was at that point that I decided I needed a walk to maintain calm. Hence, the picture of me taking a turn around the block. We didn’t end up developing final ideas that night, but I did keep from going crazy.
The third picture could be from Wednesday or Thursday morning, the mornings Meg and I went down to the river bank by Haas to gather sticks. Pretend that you are walking, biking, or running the Chippewa Trail. Suddenly to your left, you hear a noise. You look to see a college-aged girl emerging from the woods, sticks and branches slapping her in the face as she struggles against the undergrowth. She comes out triumphantly, holding a pile of sticks. She waits along the path for a minute until another girl joins her in the same fashion, also holding a pile of sticks under her arm. They casually start walking up the hill towards Haas. Nothing strange or out of the ordinary in that picture.
The fourth picture is a cardboard box. Its full of the tools we have been using this week to etch into plexiglass. Its comprised of screw drivers, nails, screws, and other miscellaneous wood cutting tools that we have scavenged. We were unable to get our hands on a proper etching needle, which is a what is normally used in printmaking for etching plexiglass. Its similar to a pencil, a metal rod with a point at the end that gives a good grip for etching. We have been making do with our odd assemblage of objects, and our drawings are coming along. We are working on finishing the third and fourth.
Next, picture an 89′ Oldsmobile driving around the back neighborhoods of the north side of Eau Claire, searching in vain for Riverview park. On our way to set up a table to make flood catchers at Riverview, we stumble upon Sam Davey Elementary school. There were some middle schoolers playing at the park there, and we asked them if they wanted to make some sculptures for an outdoor art project. A couple of them were interested, and we had a great time making flood catchers with them before receiving the directions “Go by the tennis courts, by the bridge, over the big hill” to get to Riverview park. After a little more searching, we finally found Riverview, and the kids’ descriptions of where it was were surprisingly accurate.
Now picture Meg approaching a group of middle school aged boys at Carson Park. She says a friendly hello and asks them if they want to participate in an art project. The boys stop for a second, then change their trajectory to head away from Meg. They don’t actually respond to her question, but just keep walking. Way to go Meg! She is fearless when it comes to asking kids to make flood catchers. We laughed about it because getting rejected by middle school boys when your in college is way easier than in was in eighth grade.
The next picture is one you can find a link to. Check out our event listing for the day we install at the Volume One website.
Here is the link: http://volumeone.org/sites/kids/events/calendar/2012/9/08
This promotes our big day, September 8th. We are inviting kids that made flood catchers, their families, and all community members to come to the river bend to help us put the flood catchers up in the trees for their month long installation. Look for the listing in the August 23rd printed edition of Volume One in a couple of weeks, and mark your calendars!
Thanks for keeping up with us. Your support for us is wonderful. It encourages us to know that friends care about the work we are doing and our artistic pursuits. It has not been without its challenges. Its hard to keep up with our goals and deadlines, but it means a lot to have people behind us throughout the process.
And I think that is about 1000 words.
Until next week!