Jessie Lamworth ’18 on her collaborative piece “Memory in Wood”

Jessie Lamworth ’18 on her collaborative piece “Memory in Wood”

Jessie Lamworth’s “Memory in Wood” was made with the help of Ben Horwitz ’17 and is currently installed at Green Engine Cafe. Below, she details her methods and interests as well as the story behind the sculpture “Memory in Wood.”     In the spring semester class of sculpture with Markus Baezinger, we were prompted to create a piece that curated a collection of things, focusing on the display and arrangement of whatever collection we chose to include. While many people collect tangible items such as stamps, coins, books, etc., I thought about what is universally collected among human beings: memories. I started playing around with the wood in the sculpture shop to create a shelf; a common device on which people display their collected items. The more time I spent with the material, the more I realized how the way trees recorded time (known as dendrochronology) was similar to the way in which we “collect” our memories: as we grow, we internally record certain events, shaping and building our personal structure and character.     Thus I attempted to bridge the natural with the man-made to illustrate the complexity of memory. I abandoned the right angles of a typical shelf unit and instead mimicked the beautifully flowing natural curves that occur in the wood grain. The dips and slopes in the shelves leave gaps in the collective memory flow, while each wooden block is carefully poised. The blocks, though similar in shape and size, have unique, beautifully and naturally ingrained pattern on each of its sides. The piece is not to be taken as a literal representation: I am...
Public Art in Philadelphia

Public Art in Philadelphia

With help from the Hurford Humanities Center’s Summer Research Fellowship fund, I have spent the past couple months fully immersed in the filmmaking process. As a film and media studies major at Swarthmore, I was given the option to do an independent thesis and I immediately jumped on that opportunity. After having worked on multiple documentary projects during my time at Haverford (thanks to the wonderful Vicky Funari), I knew that I wanted to engage my documentary skills and experiences in a topic close to home. Philadelphia has always been an under-appreciated city in my eyes, and having it as a cultural, historical, academic, and experiential resource has been crucial to the development of my thesis. My guiding question entering this project was something along the lines of, “How does public art delineate and/or subvert socioeconomic and cultural borders”. Since the beginning of the summer I’ve been able to narrow my focus to South Philadelphia, specifically the significant Nepalese, Burmese and Bhutanese refugee populations that have accumulated in recent years. Southeast x Southeast is a community resource  and arts center for these refugees, which aims to use art as a vehicle for storytelling and community building. With support from the Philadelphia Department of Behavioral Health and Intellectual disAbility Services, the Lutheran Children and Family Service, and the Mural Arts Program, the project has expanded beyond its initial community events and has become a long term project for artist Shira Walinsky. In addition to organizational duties and teaching ESL classes, Shira has been working on related public art projects, including the soon-to-be-completed Language Lab mural at the intersection of 7th...
Inventions en Pointe

Inventions en Pointe

Rehearsals for this collaborative pointework piece with choreographer and alum Antonia Brown are winding down as we prepare for our showing of the new piece on Tuesday, May 5th at 2 p.m. in Pembroke Studio at Bryn Mawr College! Inventions en Pointe brings together two Haverford students and one Haverford alumna in a collaborative choreographic process that seeks to explore the physical boundaries of pointe work and create a duet in four short weeks. The centerpiece of the project involves collaborating with local artist Antonia Z Brown, Class of ’13, an Artist in Residence at Mascher Space Cooperative in Philadelphia. Antonia was a 2012 recipient of the San Francisco Conservatory of Dance Choreographic Residency and was a featured artist in the 2014 Philadelphia Fringe Festival. Choreographically she is using this project to delve into the contemporary possibilities of ballet en pointe, pushing boundaries of form and motion in movement. The duet is being choreographed on two Haverford students, Aurora Jensen, Class of 2015, and Emma Cohen, Class of 2017. Our interest in the project stemmed from our drive to take an analytical eye to the limitations of our classical ballet backgrounds and discover our originality and physical capabilities. Classical ballet, particularly en pointe, is rooted in a long tradition of strict rules that require tremendous control, strength and skill to carry out. These are the very rules we intended to challenge. For instance, ballet emphasizes balance, symmetry and posture. Instead we wondered what would happen to pointework if we introduce falling, twisting, and inversion? Another norm in ballet is to build choreography entirely out of a library of classical steps. We...