THE WYOMING ART PARTY
Meg Thompson, Adrienne Vetter, and I formed the Wyoming Art Party in 2014 with the mission to organize art projects and shows that connect individuals, scattered throughout Wyoming, who work in different regions, disciplines, and from different backgrounds, with the aim of creating work that truly represents art in Wyoming as it is, rather than as it is thought to be.
For our first project "Portrait of Wyoming" we invited 38 visual artists, writers, and craft folk to collaborate on a "Portrait" of our state. Since then we've gone on to organize the "Laramie Pop-Up Artwalk," "The Parade Project," and most recently we've started to open up our new studio space for community "Work Parties."
For more information check out www.wyomingartparty.com.
THE ART & ACTION PROJECT
How do you resist something in a way that not only addresses but also transcends the forces you are resisting?
How can creative approaches thoughtfully and joyfully engage with difficult issues and empower individuals and communities?
In a time of destruction and dismantlement, we seek to facilitate the gathering of creators and builders.
This project is a community-based course focused on creative learning & action for southeast Wyoming. Working outside of an academic model--and with a focus on communal learning--we will use creative processes to not only educate and empower members of our community but also to explore how collective learning and action might lead to greater civic engagement.
At the heart of the course is the impulse to immerse ourselves in the purposeful collective energy that is generated when new people come together to work on projects.
Basically, we want to get together and make meaningful objects with our community. We want to talk about the things we make, how they exist in the world, and examine our own positions as makers and citizens. We want to facilitate something that is engaging, thoughtful, action-based, and joyful; we also want to create potentially new and interesting models for artists, non-artists, and activists in our state.
We hope to engage with community issues in a manner that balances responsive and responsible strategy with spontaneous creative action. We want to take our experiences as practicing artists and members of the Wyoming Art Party and pair them with the expertise of community partners: activists, organizers, educators, and policymakers.
The course will consist of in-class readings, presentations by contemporary artists and activists, hands-on studio projects, field trips, and trainings led by community partners.
We will make something with our hands every class. We will create together, act together, make mistakes together, and reflect together.