F.E.A.S.T. Winner - Patterson Clark
Photo By: Sonia Keiner
The first F.E.A.S.T. (Funding Emerging Art with Sustainable Tactics) at VisArts had its premiere in the Gibbs Street Gallery at VisArts at Rockville on Saturday, March 24, 2012. 75 F.E.A.S.T. diners came, enjoyed a delicious meal of locally grown and wild foraged food prepared by Chef Andre Cavallaro, listened, discussed, and voted for their favorite of four project proposals. The four project finalists were Patterson Clark, Chanan Delivuk, Margarita Morgan-Hubbard, and Valeska Populoh. Patterson Clark won the $1000 grant money comprised from the F.E.A.S.T. ticket price.
Photo By: Terri Le
So how do processed plants and weeds, paper, and ink relate to sustainability and resourcefulness? How would printmaking ultimately sustain the natural resources and art in our community?
In his proposal, Patterson Clark developed the idea that plant life, such as common weeds or garlic mustard plants, can be processed into paper and inks. These raw materials are then used to make limited-edition relief prints made of invasive-plant inks letterpress-printed from a weed-wood block onto Garlic Mustard paper. The prints will be sold for $25 each at the
FEAST at VisArts grant winner Patterson Clark's proposed design of the print for Croydon Creek Nature Center, to be made of invasive-plant inks letterpress-printed from a weed-wood block onto Garlic Mustard paper. Photo From: VisArtsatRockville.org
Towards the end of the evening, the VisArts Exhibitions Staff honored Clark with his award as well as a straw-fiber F.E.A.S.T. sash. Clark invited guests, volunteer weed pullers, and interested members to an introductory class that he will be teaching called Prospecting for Materials from Invasive Plants, currently scheduled for April 14th at VisArts (fee: $10-dollar donation to VisArts). Those students would be invited to help with the processing of weeds removed at the nature center.
F.E.A.S.T. Project Finalists - (Left to Right) Chanan Delivuk, Margarita Morgan-Hubbard, Valeska Populoh, and Patterson Clark
Photo By: Sonia Keiner
Although Clark was awarded the grant prize, all four project proposals presented thought-provoking and inspirational ideas.
Chanan Delivuk’s Food Chats project explores food topics related to food sustainability within various sectors of theWashington D.C. area. Through audio-recorded conversations, video when appropriate, and other research methods, Delivuk seeks to interact with various people in this on-going project about food sustainability.
Margaret Morgan-Hubbard’s My Neighbor is a Chicken project plans to write, create, design, and produce paper and e-book versions of a children’s storybook about ECO City Farms from the viewpoint of a 9-year-old boy who lives next door. The book is meant to educate the younger generation of farm’s sustainable practices for growing food, using renewable energy, and worm composting. She hopes that these practices would be integrated into the life of the community in urban and suburban cities.
Valeska Populoh’s Waste Not, Want Not interactive performance project for public spaces addresses the contemporary issues of textile waste, collapse of the domestic garment industry and the centrality of labor.Inspired by stories of women who toiled in Baltimore’s garment industry, the performance-project means to provoke meaningful dialogue about sustainability.
The synergy between the ideas of the artists and the attendees’ eagerness to invest in their projects was truly awe-inspiring. It was great to know that there are individuals in our community that would support emerging artists that work to improve our world. In fact, many of us can still support these causes today.
Overall, the intent for the evening was to cultivate the innovation and sense of solidarity that make it possible for communities and the arts to flourish. Artists who prosper tend to be those who have people invested in their work, aware of their vision and committed to its realization. F.E.A.S.T. at VisArts was not some kind of visual tabloid like “America's Got Talent.” Every person in the room contributed to the shaping of our cultural landscape and embraced the idea that the arts are for all and can benefit everyone.
We hope that similar and other outcomes were enjoyed by everyone: meeting people, sharing ideas, and hearing about the diversity of work being made in our community.
For more information about any of the four project proposals, please refer to the links below:
- Patterson Clark: alienweeds.com
- Chanan Delivuk: chanandelivuk.com
- Margarita Morgan-Hubbard: ecocityfarms.org
Many thanks to our patrons, sponsors (Dawson’s Market, Mom’s Organic Market, The Behnke Nurseries Co., and Honest Tea), participants, and guests!
Stay tuned for announcements, call for proposals, and sponsorship opportunities for F.E.A.S.T. At VisArts #2 on our blog.