Even thought the performance wasn't specifically for 14 Black Poppies, the feedback received made me question and reflect on the broader work of 14 Black Poppies. It made me look at our Proverbs and the workshops inspired by them in a new light. With just a little more intention and detail, they could become rituals of community, art, and wellness.
For the past year and a half, an Artist and Healer Network has formed the heart of the organization. This network meets to share a meal, renew our spirits, and brainstorm ways in which 14 Black Poppies manifests itself in the broader world. In fact, it is specifically because of our Artist and Healer Network that we have the event line-up that we do.
As we enter 2013, I want to go deeper. I want to strengthen our roots of community, arts, and wellness. I want our heart to be resilient and compassionate. I want the way in which we manifest to transcend a single experience/event.
After my performance for Reviving Spirits, I know ritual that will make this happen. I saw it in the eyes of the addict who happened to be in the cafe for my performance, who spoke to me weeks later and thanked me for creating a space where "I can just calm down". He didn't even participate in the ritual. Rather, he passively sat at the back of the cafe sipping his cup of water. Still, it moved him. And even more importantly, it stayed with him.
Over the course of 2013, I will be working with our Artist and Healer Network to create these rituals. They will be based on 14 Black Poppies Proverbs and will draw on past activities done in our workshops, services, and Network gatherings. They will explore intergenerational, intercultural, and interdisciplinary practices that promote reflection, connection, and compassion.
A majority of these rituals will be done with the Artist and Healer Network first. Then, after some refinement and feedback, we will offer these rituals to the community. It is my goal to refine, hone, and perform FOUR rituals throughout 2013.
I will share art, stories, photos, etc. along this journey. It is my hope that through the sharing of these works and the performance of these rituals that we continue cultivating community, arts, and wellness for ALL and in doing so that our network expands.
If you would like to be invited to one of our FOUR RITUALS in 2013, please contact me.
Photos from the Ritual of Complexity
What emerged were intricate, complex mandalas rooted in the ritual of breathing. It also showed that even though we all breathe, we experience it differently.
The first three images below are physical marks inspired by individual breath. The last four images are "mandalas" that used the breath mark as inspiration for pattern. Each artist took their mark and filled a 1/4 of the mandala with their own pattern. They then passed the paper to the left. They were then asked to fill in another 1/4 of the mandala with a pattern that blended their mark into the previous pattern. Finally, they got their original paper back and were invited to add additional markings where needed to unify the image.
The Artist and Healer Network is: Ramona Soto, Jimena Quiroga-Hopkins, Mari Villaluna, and Kapi'olani Lee.