Tuesday, May 19, 2009

List Poems by Artist Mentors

Endings seem to be so often, surprising. The credits roll before we feel ready. That's what it feels like at New Urban Arts this week. Our last day of arts mentoring was last Friday. To carve out time for closure and culmination, there are all kinds of things we do in the studio, little and small. Like our tribute ceremony for graduating seniors. Like the mind-blowing bash on the last day of our programs, our annual end of year Art Party. Like making lists with artist mentors in attempts to articulate and name a shared experience and understanding of this space. . .

At the last mentor meeting of the year, our closing activity is to write list poems about New Urban Arts. Without much explanation, other than to write down the answers like when making a grocery list, we ask the volunteer artist mentors to list the following:

1 thing they've done in the studio recently, 3 sounds they hear often at our studio, 2 familiar smells inside the studio, 2 things they are always looking for in the studio, 2 things1 person they always look forward to seeing in the studio, 1 line of dialouge they remember being said at the studio, 1 memorable moment at the studio this year, 2 names of people they've have good conversations with at the studio, 2 ways to describe New Urban Arts, 1 reason they decided to volunteer as an artist mentor, and summarize the past year at New Urban Arts in one word.

They are told not to worry if they miss an item on the list. They are then asked to add the address of New Urban Arts at the top of the list, as a title for their list poem. We all read our lists aloud, quickly around the circle without any pause or applause between readers. When they are read aloud all together, this moment happens- a momentum is created that feels very much like a rolling of the credits. Or a setting of the sun. It's an a-ha moment.

Below are a collection of the lists created this year.

743 Westminster Street
Printed t-shirts
Laughter
Music
Darkroom door opening
Emulsion
Wood floor smell
Tape
Scissors
Abby
"That's great!"
Andrew playing guitar at lock-in
Experimental
Hang out
Make friends
Diamond

743 Westminster Street 
Fabric flowers
Laughs
Outbursts
Snacks
Sarah
"I totally respect your opinion"
Epic brainstorm with Ava
Shannon
Andrew
It's like the Internet, but it's a building
Laboratory
It's an amazing community
Inspiring
743 Westminster Street
Worked on the computer
Hose from screenprinting
Jesse siren
Wax from hot plate
Nothing + transparency
Amanda
“You swagger jacked that”
Morning dance party at the lock-in
Emily
Zack
Nebulous chaos
A place for not knowing
Because my friend told me to
Intimidating

743 Westminster Street
Yelling
Laughing
Crashing
Mold
Sanitizer
Staple
File folders
Emely, “Why'd you buy 12 cookies?"
"Because they're delicious"
Art Reach salsa fundraiser w/ my students
Sarah
Aneudy
Incubator
Breaker of chains
To see if people would be interested
Wow
 
743 Westminster Street
Basket weaving
“Wooooo!”
“Ahhh!”
Things dropping
Hot glue
Snack food
Scissors that work
Morgan
"This is kinda fun..."
Cynthia discovering soft materials
Zack
Bridgette
Charlene
A place where everyone can come
To hang out, make stuff, + be together
I wanted to work collaboratively
Dancing

743 Westminster Street
FLIP!
Laughter
Music
Sirens
Screenprint Ink
Pizza
Computer paper
Ava
Sarah
“I didn’t get in”
“I GOT IN!”
“THANKS”
Students drinking black coffee!!
Peter
Aneudy
Fun
Welcoming
To become a part of a community
(To commit to my community)
Transformational

743 Westminster Street
Painted some gesso
Laughter
Water spraying
Talking
Hot glue
Scissors
Pens
Sarah
“What are you doing?”
Greeting by the door
James
Shanika
Crazy (art place)
A place for kids to hang out after school
Saw the storefront while apartment hunting
and was intrigued
Home
 
743 Westminster Street
Cardboard bunny
Chairs sliding
Yelling
Laughing
Soap
Acrylic paint
The best scissors
Soft brushes
Ava
“What are we doing today?”
Making bricks, hanging them
Shannon
Sarah
Painting w/ friends
Making conversation through art
Find community
Honest
743 Westminster Street
Paint
Grinding
Splashing
“Wooooing”
Glue gun
Stale bread
Nibs
X-acto knives
Sarah
"What are we doing today?"
Jesse
Emily
After school art program for wanderers
A way to find one's voice
To provide knowledge for betterment
Practice
 
743 Westminster Street
Laughter
Snack food crinkling
Sirens
Hot glue
Subway sandwiches
CJ
“That's cool”
Jokes about old people
CJ
Heather
Chaotic
Open
It's like coffee, only better
Breathing

743 Westminster Street
Fix sewing machines
Dust
Sewing machine needles
My students
“Seriously guys?”
Made her first mitten
Fun art!!!
Because someone mentored me
Enlightening

743 Westminster Street
Sudoku
Music
"Damn..."
Chewing
Screenprint Room
No. 2 PENCILS W/ ERASERS
Emily
"You look like Harry Potter"
Student turned her grade around
Sarah Meyer
Amanda Abreu
Free after school program for creative youth
Open after-school arts mentoring
Need service to be intimate and linked to creativity
Awesome

743 Westminster Street
Fire trucks
Police cars
Doors closing
Fritos
Axe spray
Kevin
"I've learned so much
in such a short amount of time"
Getting my salsa moves down
Peter Hocking
Andrew
Jason Yoon
Life changing place with a roof
A bunch of different people relating
Awesome!!
 
743 Westminster Street
Watch
Squeaky floor
Laughter
Water cooler
Paint
Snack cart
Pliers
Tape
Sarah!
Conversation about age
CJ
Jane
Kooky + Important
To fight it out
Brilliant


743 Westminster Street
Bookmarks
“Hey”
“Oops”
“Yeah”
Paint
Paper
Small newsprint
Mary
“Hey!”
Sharing a name
Tiffany
Andrew
Youth studio
Crazy place
To spend time here
To exercise
Intense
 
743 Westminster Street
Animation
Laughter
Radio
Yelling
Cheetos
Summer
Students
Ken
Jesse Holler
Synergy
Maxine
Jean
2nd home
Critical zone
Self challenge
Short
743 Westminster Street
Made a lemonade art stand
Laughter
Chairs moving on the floor
Questions
Acrylic paint
Hot glue burning
Construction paper
Safety pins
Drywall screws for 2x4s
Heather
Emely
"Someone change the music"
YOUTUBE MANGA-A-THON
Sarah
Andrew
Open
Fearless
So I could learn
Building

743 Westminster Street
Assisting a film shoot
Laughter
Drilling
Salsa music
Paint
Crayons
Markers
Lined paper
Andrew M.
"I'm souped"
Chilling under fabric tree at Lock-in
Sarah
Andrew O.
Place to create, laugh
and make my day.
It's like home-
lots of noise, craziness and close family.
The idea of a challenge.
Getting into film and helping others.
What I needed.

743 Westminster Street
T-shirt design
Jesse's Call
Phone ring
Busses outside
Traffic
Subway
Paint
Pencil
Mathias
"That's cool."
Meeting students for the first time
Jason
Peter
Crazy/ Fun
Unique
Needed somewhere to grow as a designer

743 Westminster Street
Pinhole photo
Music
Drums
Fixer
Wax
Can opener
Pencil
Tina
“No---way.”
“Open it, no, yes open it, no”
"Itcanwait"
McKenzie
After school arts program
Special place
To learn something
Too short

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