An ongoing and collaborative partnership between Al-Bustan Seeds of Culture and in.site collaborative partners Nora Elmarzouky and Nadia Elokdah has resulted in a series of co-designed workshops situated within an interactive exhibition exploring how diverse communities shape, imagine, and reimagine home in Philadelphia. This latest workshop #ReimagineHome is set in the Looking for Home Exhibition, part of the Seldom Seen: Community Sourced Exhibition and Re-PLACE-ing Philadelphia Project at the Painted Bride gallery.
Participants are encouraged to draw, write, and discuss with neighbors their thoughts and imaginaries related to and representative of home as an extension of identity. Through a series of consecutive questions, participants are led through a process of expressing, abstracting, sharing, and exchanging personal experiences of identity and the subsequent role of identity upon the culture of place.
Workshop • Exhibition • Engagement Strategies
As participants interacted with each other and the prompting questions throughout the exhibition, many came to the realization that looking for "home" allows for extremely deep associations to present themselves in unexpected ways. While one person associates house with shoes at the door or family dinners, another identifies struggles with foreclosure. The sharing of these diverse experiences uncovers the complex and layered status of urban life in Philadelphia for different communities.
Think about how you might identify what home means to you? And how then would you translate that through an abstraction or representation.
Looking at the We Went Looking for Home but We Found book and exhibition as inspiration, can you identify an icon, a recipe, or a song that captures some part of home?
Where can you imagine this being represented around the city? Events; spaces; public art; programs; etc.
How similar or different to others is your experience and notion of home?
Can you combine your idea with another's to reimagine a shared home?
What if everyone here (everyone's idea) were combined to shape a collective belonging of home here in the city? How would that work? What might it look like? Who, if anyone, should foster that conversation within the city?
Now, how might you answer this final question, how does your notion of home shape the culture of Philadelphia?