Editor's Note: This week Charles, Ashley, and Molly respond to each other's essays from last week. Monday: Charles. Wednesday: Ashley. TODAY: Molly. Also, follow along as Derek Lee Miller tries to understand creative placemakings origins and Sheila Regan, at mnartists.org, checks in with some local projects.
Reading through the thoughtful, exciting, and charged ideas brought to us by Charles and Ashley, I found myself thinking about odes and elegies.
Elegies are poems of mourning that mark the end of something significant while odes are celebrations of something quite beloved to the poet. In order to write a successful ode or elegy, there must be tension within the poem. In odes, you often find reflections from the poet about how much would be lost if the object of their attention were to depart. In elegies, the poet praises the very thing it has lost. As we grapple with who benefits, who decides, who holds power, how work and where work and what work in regards to this troublesome umbrella of placemaking, we each praise and mourn. Are these essays odes or elegies to the terrible and beautiful potential of placemaking? I read both/and.
After soaking in the essays and responses, I was struck by what I perceived as genuine and graceful love of what art is and isn’t, and who holds power in relation to creativity. Ashley and Charles said it all best, so I did what artists inspire other artists to do; steal, repurpose, reinterpret, recycle, reduce, reuse. I took their language and put it in couplets, one line from Ashley, the next from Charles.
I am attempting to placemake the hell out of this blog, meaning take a place that is meant for one thing, and make it a place where something else happens. Something like art or actually art. Ashley and Charles inspired me to stop talking and start making and that is brown paper packages tied up with strings kind of my favorite thing an artist of any kind can give to themselves or someone else.
Behold: an odegy to the artist:
In Relation to Eruption
You’re an artist. A small part of a larger hyper need.
Making art actually somewhere, taken deep.
In this pantheon, this reconciliation, the most intimate presence
do not forget our work table, do not forget the art.
Such planning with the idea, blind and The Money (greedy)
Disguised or replaced, public, politicians, planners, leave telling of the movement.
Put The Money on the great deal table; vital, but blind, pervasive.
My dear pal, I am working on today. Altogether. For a long time.
We miss rich history. We recognize deep roots.
Is what we are doing camp? Replacing placing with making.
A smooth, unruffled exchange. A linguistics lesson happens. You know this.
I am happy. River writes books about granite and falls.
We do love . The clash . Trust, emerging . Money is miserable.
With risk; our right desire helplessly scales steep slopes.
My fear buzz is a process that warrants ephemeral faith.