M.A.S.(MEDITATION, STORYTELLING, AND ARTMAKING) is an art, wellness, and oral history project where I engaged with members of Brooklyn's elder community to create a social justice artwork.
Considering Audre Lorde's statement, "Caring for myself is not self-indulgence, it is self-preservation, and that is an act of political warfare,"; we explored ideas around self-care practices in black communities.
Due to Covid-19 precautions, we held virtual story circles online via zoom, once a week for nine weeks. We created a safe space through these meetings where we discussed historical trauma, resilience, caring for ourselves, and black joy. Each session began with a centering meditation.
As a collective, we created a story quilt and a series of sound works that address how caring for ourselves might bring about positives changes in black communities.
A kit with supplies to create a quilt panel was mailed to each participant. Once completed, their finished quilt panel was sent back to me, and I assembled our story quilted and edited oral recordings to create a "sound quilt."
Our artwork will be utilized as a tool to activate further discussion and community participation around notions of self-care practices through exhibitions in public spaces.