Mending Gold: Community

Mending Gold: Community | 22w X 14.5h | photography | Mending Gold: Community was inspired by unfortunate hate crimes that occurred on the campus of Eastern Michigan University during the 2016 fall semester. These hate crimes were spray painted racial slurs on building walls targeted towards African American students. These senseless acts of hate have been very hurtful to the students, faculty, staff and administration at EMU where I have taught since 2007. As a human and faculty member I felt devastated and angered by the ignorance and hate that was expressed on campus. In response to these events I chose to try and make a difference, I began by holding a Mending Community meeting to invite students and faculty to develop a productive dialog and begin to understand how we can all progress together in the future. Also, as a part of this conversation I want to explore how art can be a part of that progression as it has a great power to impact the world in which we live. At the close of the 2016 fall semester, I worked with two students, Porsha Webb and Julia Windom, to perform a woven mending on their hands. Using their fingers as a warp I wove the gold yarn between their fingers weaving their hands together. This was one way of creating a fabric binding us all together as we are stronger together.
The yarn that was used to bind Porsha and Julia's hands together is currently being woven into a piece of cloth to be shown as an artifact with the photographs (in progress-photos to come). In future semesters I hope to continue mending and grow more with the EMU community and beyond.

*Photograph documenting the hands of Porsha Webb prior to mending.