Label Resistance – Tying Silk and Story

July 12, 20193:00 pm3:50 pm
This is a participatory art experience and story sharing opportunity with the goal of addressing mistaken assumptions people make about us with our various identities, to create further understanding and empathy.
People who participate (artmaking storytellers!) will be invited to work with a strip of silk to complete the sentence: “Even though I am… (tall/queer/pregnant/a homeschooler/a grandpa/Asian/a teenager/undocumented/over 60/Muslim/tattooed/a Republican, etc.), I also …,” filling in the second blank with their truth which helps to resist a frequent or hurtful misconception.
The strips of silk can be written on with one’s own handwriting, expressing each individual’s uniqueness as a beloved child of God.
I envision 6 steps in this session:
1) Introduction of the Idea: Misconceptions of identity. Includes the reading of a poem which gives voice to and laments such a misconception.
2) Write: Participants feel and engage with their strip of colorful silk, contemplate its ability to move, its natural beauty, its strength despite delicacy; then write their own completed sentence, “Even though I am…I also…” on their silk. More color or designs may be added if desired.
3) Share Story: In small groups of 3-4, participants share their sentence (and if desired, a bit of their story).
4) Trust/Exchange: Each person may opt to let go and entrust their story to another person in their group, exchanging silk strips (or may instead keep their own strip).
5) Empathy/Valuing Another’s Story: New small groups are formed, share the sentence (and perhaps, the story) from the point of view of the other participant whose silk strip you now hold (or one’s own sentence/story once again), aiming to give voice and value to another’s story.
6) Tie Together: All silk strips may be then tied together to form a chain of stories or a weaving of true experiences. (In the tying, written words may be hidden, reminding us that everyone has stories which we can’t know or “read” on the surface.)
12:00 am Laura Norton