After a long day for everyone, Mary and I welcomed three weary travelers to Pentwater, and their first dinner at Shared Space Studio. With the Field Trip Field Guide in hand, they toured the building and the town and watched the sunset over Lake Michigan from the end of the pier.
This is our first summer housing the resident artists at the studio, and it feels like an important step towards our future plans. Residents can easily work day and night, and take responsibility for the space as their home.
She has settled in to her desk and spent the greater part of each day going over source material and the earlier drawings for the book, and mapping out new images. Natalie also advocates for daily beach trips, nudging the other residents get out of the studio for a quick dip.
Elijah Jensen-Lindsey, from Nampa Idaho, has taken on a slew of projects, setting up work zones around the studio, inside and out. We found him Saturday morning, playing a glockenspiel that he wedged between two trees in the meadow. He offers the metallophone zone to anyone wishing to make a prayer or a song, or call out in bell tones to the rest of the meadow. Elijah is writing one song each day, a series of 'Meadowtations' that he will perform for the guests at A Pleasant Evening. He is also writing a poem each day, and a little desk and chair have popped up outside to serve as the poem zone. In the little sew zone Elijah sews photographs to poems he types out by typewriter, and binds the handmade books he is writing in.
Elijah is also spending time in the hoop zone, perfecting his free-throws.
On our trip to the hardware store, Elijah bought some supplies to paint the parking lot with yellow lines, mapping out a regulation-size basketball court (or at least half of one). He also has begun accumulating wood and wooden objects to build a permanent percussion instrument between the two pines for future residents and meadow wanderers.
Elijah showed images of his paintings, installation, and photographs from his life. He reminded us of the thin line between life and death, between meaning and meaningless. He told us we are all here on earth with a chance to live a creative life, to make things. He played a meadow song and projected plans for the new hoop court.
Natalie wowed the crowd with her video, combining stop-motion animation and Super 8 film. She shared several collaborative and craft-intensive projects, including her Love Letters Anonymous project, where she has collected found and submitted love letters, in original, copied, and read-out-loud formats. She set up a beautiful merch table with her screen-printed zines and posters, celebrating such cherished subjects as Dolly Parton, Twin Peaks, and gemstones.