Gatherings is an art and poetry community-based project that experiments with a cycle of giving and receiving similar to my earlier project, the Patra Passage. Its purpose was to raise relief funds for creatives in need during the pandemic. The project began with 108 professional artists and poets that contributed original work. The artists created their art on 56 handcrafted wooden boxes. Poets wrote original poetry for inclusion inside the boxes. The artists’ boxes with the poems enclosed began to travel in June. Each artist chose someone to receive the box. Each recipient was instructed to contribute something reflective of their own experience within the box. That person then chose a new recipient who would add their contribution. In this passage, the boxes moved from person to person gathering artifacts from over 300 contributors. Each person, each gift, amplified the community created by the project.
All the Gatherings boxes were sold with the net proceeds of $50,000 donated to Artist Trust and Idaho Commission for the Arts who distributed assistance through relief grants. Please visit the website for further information, to view all 56 Gatherings boxes, read the poetry, and see photos of selected contributions from participants.
This project occurred in collaboration with poetry coordinators Phyllis Cole-Dai and Ruby Wilson, and Patricia Rovzar and Gail Severn Galleries, and with all the generous contributors to the Gatherings project.