This mask making
project developed out of a brief conversation and subsequent contact
Jurgen Kalcher, a social scientist from Germany. He is involved
in a project, called Dianoia, which is exploring the role of reflection,
self expression and creativity in bringing about positive change in individuals.
Art making is about engaging the creative spirit we are each born with and bringing it forth for ourselves and others to experience. Experience is the currency of change. It’s a short
walk to see the connection between Professor Kalcher’s work
and art making.
Why mask making? The history
of mask-making is varied, but mask-making, within the
context of a group is narrative, as well as autobiographical. The process of making the mask is a story about ones self, told to oneself. In a group, it is sharing the storymaking during and after the artmaking experience. Modern life has a tendancy to make time for reflection, self-discovery and self-expression a luxury, instead of a necessity. This workshop views artmaking as a necessity and uses mask making as a starting point on the continuum of creating our own stories, indivdually and together. The workshop begins with a short refection period, and moves onto an opening exercise designed for making
connections with each other through personal stories. We
weave a safety net of shared experiences that sets the stage for the artmaking process. The end results is a tangible, creative endeavor, that marks a place and time in our own stories we may have forgetten, buried or dismissed from our everyday business of living.
“They say that time changes things, but you actually have
to change them yourself.” Andy Warhol
|We began our maskmaking with
the weaving of a tapestry of shared memories, prompted by mementos
brought in by each of the women. Placed in the center of a long table,
each chose an object they did not bring and related a memory or story
it prompted in them. Then, the person who brought the momento, shared
their reason for bringing it. Often, memories and stories overlapped
and inspired more conversation. We then moved into the technical aspects
of maskmaking instruction, contstruction and the creative energy continued
to flow. It was AMAZING! To see the maskmaking steps click