Wednesday, July 05, 2017

Overdue at the Library and the Fourth of July

 (Above:  Public stitching at the public library.  Click on any image to enlarge.)

This blog post is a bit "overdue" ... because I should have written it on Saturday morning while still enjoying the wonderful feelings from the night before ... at OVERDUE:  An Evening of Music & Art at the Richland County Library. 

This unique after-hours event was produced by Fort Psych, a media design team specializing in the creation of public experience projects.  I've collaborated with Jordan Young and Fort Psych before ... fabricating a suspended LED installation that was part of last year's visual arts component at the Indie Grits film festival.  (There's an awesome video HERE.)

Fort Psych has worked with the Richland County Library before too ... last year ... when the renovated second floor opened to the public.  (That video is super cool too!  I can't wait to see what video will be created for Friday night!)

This year the library renovated the first floor and opened it to the public with another multi-media "happening".  Fort Psych was hired ... and invited me to take part!  I was thrilled to accept!

The event's billing included:
Check out two floors of newly renovated spaces, enjoy live music, and get inspired with interactive artwork from some of South Carolina’s best creatives. It’s time to check back in!

There was a stage, musicians, games, and other fun activities.  I didn't have a chance to really check anything out because I stayed so very, very busy.  My area was on the first floor.  It was so much fun to share simple things:  threading a needle, taking a stitch, attaching a button.  Most people had never sewn but were eager to try.  We talked about grandmothers, aunts, and neighbors who stitched.

Everyone had a story.  The hours went by in a flash.  My husband Steve came toward the end of the evening and took most of these photos as the crowd started to disperse.  I could have stitched all night!

But ... Steve and I had things to do and places to go ... like Washington, DC!

We soaked ourselves in sun block and sat on the Capitol lawn for the PBS Fourth of July performance.  We saw emcee John Stamos introduce and play drums with the Beach Boys ... followed by the Four Tops.  There was a country singer, a gospel goddess, last year's winner of a television singing competition, and the Star Wars robots cracking jokes before the National Symphony Orchestra played medley from the movie.  Best of all, the show ended with Dan Aykroyd and Jim Belushi as The Blues Brother ... joined by the "soul man" himself, Sam Moore.  That was fantastic.  The fireworks were, of course, utterly beautiful.

While in DC, we went to a couple museums ... of course!  Among the things we saw were Alexander Calder's circus animals ...

... which seemed fitting.  We also spent most of Monday at the Folklife Festival which featured circus acts from all over the country.  We watched two shows under the Big Tent but also enjoyed mini-performances from various circus schools in the half-remodeled Smithsonian Arts and Industry building.  The students were all excellent ... and the audience could get really close ... which makes it all the more exciting!

I am linking this post to Nina-Marie's "Off the Wall Fridays", a site for sharing fiber arts.

1 comment:

Shannon said...

That library evening looks like it was a fabulous experience! So cool to interact with so many people! And super congrats on being in Form not Function, I was thrilled to see it listed in the Fiber Art Fridays SAQA newsletter today. Getting into that show is one of my (unrealized) goals, and I've entered before but I didn't really have anything suitable to enter this year. I wish I could see it!