In the workshop, we will use poetry & art/radical mapping to explore how we bridge connections between each other, mourn & memorialize in a world that refuses to acknowledge many of us, our power, and instead works to actively displace us. With attention to sites of grief, protest, art, and love, we will engage in discussion, writing, and a collective mapping project that tracks physical and emotional sites that traditional maps leave out. The exercise reimagines mapping as a revolutionary tool for remembrance and celebration of our lost spaces, our movements, our kin, and our heroes. How do we mourn and memorialize in a world that doesn’t acknowledge us, a world that rapidly pushes us out of our homes and communities? How do we connect through our grief, our pride, our love? It allows us to be the makers and educators of our own histories. It situates participants as both expert and student, creating a space where we both share our own and take in each others’ truths, knowledge(s), lineages, and relationships to place.
The entirety of the workshop is based on mapping as an interactive and radical practice, one that communities can use to archive political & artistic movements, personal and collective history, etc. The power to map isn’t often given to the marginal, or traditionally thought of as an artistic or radical endeavor. However, diy cartography is a means for archiving history, bringing communities together, and speaking our truths. It is a tangible way to honor and bring our lives into form through visual, textual, and emotional means. The ethic and intention of this project is to memorialize and archive local artistic and political communities in real time, as we experience them happening, as a route to healthy collaboration outside of institutions, the academy, and within a rapidly gentrifying city. This activity gives power back to self and community in the exercise of marking places, events, and people of importance.