Power, in letters.

 

This Saturday at The Shoebox (a space for you to write in community), we will be writing Syrian families that are new to the city of London, Ontario; having arrived here as refugees (definition).

In an attempt to write what I endeavour to accomplish with Lefty Smudges (& The Shoebox), and then to define this letter writing session in those terms, this is what I have come up with.

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The Shoebox @ 207 King St. London, Ontario, Canada

Purpose of Lefty Smudges:

The Acknowledgement of Others;

Through any medium or means, communication is passed between intended parties.

The result is the connection of all parties involved, to each other, and back to themselves.

Purpose of The Shoebox (Sat. Jan. 16):

The acknowledgment of newly arrived Syrian families, in the city of London.

Hand written letters will be packaged together, and mailed to Cross Cultural Learner Centre (who they are, what they do).

The communal act of writing and mailing these letters will serve to enhance the feelings of community within both writers, and recipients.

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Each week, the names and addresses of those we write will change – will we focus on different groups in society/our lives, involving ourselves in social justice, the magic of relationship, and current issues – the intention, however, will remain the same.

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Now, I wish to quote an email I received, from a recipient of the last letter writing campaign, in which letters were written and mailed to humanitarian aid organizations helping Syrian refugees. This email was from a member of M.O.A.S. (who they are, what they do).

To the citizens of London Ontario who made our day!

…I am delighted to say that we recently received your package of beautiful messages of support and encouragement. I cannot tell you how much it meant to us…[I]n the current climate our work can be loved and hated and receiving messages like yours, of sympathy and humanitarian feeling, is incredibly motivating to our team in the office and especially those on board, with whom we have shared your wonderful gift and who were deeply touched..

Please extend my sincere and most heartfelt thanks to all those who participated and please know how valued your correspondence was to us here.

Yours in gratitude and solidarity.

THIS IS POWERFUL STUFF.

Lefty Smudges is a revolution.

Join me.

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I’m Right Here.

The postcards are waiting patiently for their time to shine again, but in the mean time, I have been using these first few days of the new year to focus on The Shoebox and Valentine’s Day (my biggest project of the year)!!

There were 1 or 2 concerning comments on my social media pages of late, with the tone of ‘Nice to know ya. Thanks for the postcards. See ya later Lefty’. So let me be clear – ‘365 Days: A Year in Postcards’ WAS A SINGLE PROJECT OF MINE, AND I HAVE ONLY JUST BEGUN!!

For the next three Saturdays I will be holding space, hereafter known as The Shoebox. The Shoebox is space I am creating where people can come and interact with me as an artist (experience the connection I offer), where they can write letters (find the materials, addresses and the inspiration), and where they can join a growing community of likeminded individuals who choose to use the written word as a tool for social justice, as a considerate means of connecting them to those they love, and who acknowledge the need to keep written communication alive in our world.

The Shoebox will travel around with me this summer, bringing letter-writing and note passing to music festivals, and beautiful towns along the way! I’ll keep you posted on dates and times and towns….

Here is a poster for The Shoebox, for the next three weeks:

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And then!!…Starting the first week of February, I will be running my Love Letter workshops again, in conjunction with the Valentine card campaign. The workshops are going to be held at local used bookstores (I have confirmed Tues. Feb. 2, 6-8pm, at Attic Books  http://www.atticbooks.ca) – because what better place to write a love letter than to be surrounded by the greatest love letters ever written, and because used bookstores are where I have spent much of my time, and where I have found much inspiration.

This year, the heartfelt Valentine, that you can order and have sent to someone you love, is a collaboration between myself and the wonderfully talented textile artist, Paulina Szczesny (http://www.psletsdye.com). I was with her the other day at her home studio, and while she worked beside me, I started this collage…stay tuned pals – this year’s Valentine is going to be bea-u-ti-ful! #getinhere

 

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I learned a lot this past year, and I do hope you will stick with me as I continue to unfold and grow as an artist. I have lots of ideas (including a podcast!), and opportunities for us to correspond…it’s going to be a good year.

Come to The Shoebox. #getinhere. Write soon.

All my Love, Smudge

The Shoebox

I am creating my own space, called, The Shoebox.

It is time.

The Shoebox will be a place where you can come to write, and reconnect. It will be a place where you can interact with me as an artist, and experience the magic of  a ‘smudge note’.

This space will allow for thinking and feeling at a snail’s pace, the cadence of consideration.

The Shoebox will travel with me as I take to music festivals and Ontario towns this summer. It will be the home I carry with me, and invite you to enter.

For the next three Saturday mornings (Dec. 5, 12, 19, 9am-12noon), 207 King St. (in London, Ontario) will play host to this space.

I look forward to growing and developing The Shoebox in the weeks and months ahead, and I am glad you will be here to share this journey with me

The Shoebox operates through donation, to begin. I trust I will be taken care of.

 

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