Wednesday, January 22, 2020

Mural at 3 part harmony farm standing strong!

Good morning
What fun to see my work creating a mural with the Three Part Harmony Farm community standing strong in this video by Soledad O'Brian! The mural is pictured as part of the farm landscape twice!


Thanks Holly Baker for sending this link to the video/story on Soledad O'Brian's Matter of Fact.
 
Look closely as it carries the beautiful energy of so many folks who support Gail Taylor's work at the farm and with the broader community!

Well done Gail in your work to create a community operated, urban farm that improves the health of all residents. 



Friday, January 10, 2020

#NoSacrificeZone NO MATTAWOMAN POWER PLANT!

It was fun to create these quick action signs in support of Clean Air Prince Georges and the fight to keep a 5th power plant from being built in our Brandywine area.  

 
On the first day of the 2020 Maryland legislative session, Southern Prince Georges County environmental activists showed their resolve in demanding Environmental Justice. They were there to urge our governor Hogan and our state representatives unite with our community and work for NO MATTAWOMAN POWER PLANT! Well Done!




 

Thursday, December 5, 2019

Much Anticipated Highlander Maryland Identity Workshop


Greetings friends 
Today I'm reflecting on my first creative gathering with the Highlander Maryland strategic Team. My purpose was to engage the participants in hands on art making with a focus on Identity.
We had 90 minutes together and the Highlander team made the most of this opportunity with both time for reflection and time for creative action. Well done!










Friday, November 22, 2019

Working on new series-what do you think?

Peace and blessings fellow art supporters,

What do you think about these

Two digital images that

I’ve recently create during my recent project in the SF Bay Area.

What comes up for you?



Wednesday, September 11, 2019

KICKIN OFF A NEW PROJECT IN SF


 
This project is supported by many kind individual donations and


Saturday, April 27, 2019

Charm for Asian and African Women Farmers


I want to share this most recent project with you wonderful supporters of my work. The story of the piece is as follows:

Charm for Asian and African Women Farmers
Caryl Henry Alexander

Tradition, my sisters, is what brings this artwork—Charm for Asian and African Women Farmers—into being. The work was conceived after a lively conversation that I had with three leading women at Vietlead.org, a Vietnamese community cultural organization in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. The conversation was about growing “bitter melon” (Momordica charantia), which is a much loved and traditional medicinal food in Asia. 
 
There was an elder woman farmer from Vietnam, who had been growing bitter melon for many years. She was happy to share her practice with me. She helped me to understand the plant intimately; and it was a beautiful experience. She explained how to treat the roots as the plant grows to support a strong harvest and made clear how to manage the vine’s growth with a mind to support its proliferation of blossoms and, ultimately, fruit.

 














For me, it was a magical conversation because I had been studying this amazing plant in my plant medicine classes. The generous spirits of these women are with me in my garden today as I cultivate the plant medicine that supports my well being and that of many in my community.

 












When I traveled to West Africa this past winter, my plan was to create artworks that are plant-based both thematically as well as materially. I visioned connecting with Nigerian and Ghanaian women farmers and herbalists to learn about their traditions and current practices in plant medicine. 
What struck me was the proliferation of, and the African women’s respect for, a plant they call “bitter leaf” (ernonia amygdalina), which is indigenous to tropical Africa. The women showed me how to identify the plant and explained to me its many uses in food and as a medicinal preparation.


I began to notice at least one of these plants, which is a shrub, in most family urban compounds; and saw fields of the plant being cultivated whenever I traveled to rural areas. I learned about the life cycle of the plant, its anatomy, and how it is grown and used by women to strengthen the health and wellness of their families and communities. 































I came to realize that this plant’s medicine, its cultural context, and the connection that the women had to it is quite similar to that of the bitter melon. The bitter spirit of these plants is what is most prized in both culinary and medicinal practice.




   
It is in the healing energetics of the plants in this charm that I endeavor to connect my Asian and African farming sisters. It is a coming together of the power of the earth, the soil, water, and the seasons.
Thank you, my Asian and African sisters, for sharing your wisdom and connection with our planet. We are one in our love of the earth.


Charm for Asian and African Women Farmers was created in Ibadan, Nigeria; Ntonso, Ghana; and Clinton, Maryland (USA). 
It is comprised of plant-based materials including banana and pineapple leaves, lemon grass, cotton, sumac flowers, onion skin, English ivy, and bamboo; and finished off with acrylic paint and love.














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Friday, April 19, 2019

Report Back on Report Back!




My dear friends Tunde and Tinuke Odunlade welcomed us into their home!

Greeting friends! Thanks to everyone who came by to hear about our West Africa Adventure! It was fun to see everyone and to catch up on your goings on. We had some good conversation and we got to share our experiences during the two weeks that Jesse was with me in Nigeria.







Monday, March 11, 2019

West African Adventures Report Back Party

   You are invited to join us as we share our experiences and offer insights into what life looked like to us in Nigeria and Ghana!

Friday, March 8, 2019

Huntington Community Center gallery March 2019

WOW! These sculptures, "Charms for the Anacostia River" look awesome at Huntington Community Center gallery in Bowie! They are part of an exhibition of the Poetry Poster Project.

Maybe you remember these sculptures from last Summer when they were created in collaboration with the PGCounty SYEP youths.



The project was designed to be installed at Bladensberg Waterfront Park and I hear that they will be installed at the park sometime after the exhibition closes.



Thanks Hiram Larew and Stewart Seal for your support in making the exhibition happen. Thanks to Jesse Alexander for representing me and photographing the gallery last night.

Wednesday, December 5, 2018

Fox Haven Farm yard art and solstice wreaths


I love this time of year, don’t you? The plants and trees doing their thing, resting and building strength for the coming Spring. The visual splendor of the naked branches is tickling my eyes! 
In light of this-I’ve been thinking of the wonderful people out at Fox Haven Farm who participated in my yard art with vines workshop last spring and the awesome sculptures that they created for their gardens. I would love to see their work in the spaces that they lived in this Summer.

So yesterday I received an invite to propose a workshop at Fox Haven for 2018 and I started thinking about Springtime herbal wreaths and was looking around to see how to create a wreath. In doing so I realized that by now the leaves have given way and there should be an awesome vine framework on which to build a wreath! Repurposed vines, repurposed artwork!


If anyone has pics please share them with me carylhenryalexander@gmail.com
And if you create a wreath with your vine sculpture-let me know! Enjoy the season
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Wednesday, November 7, 2018

#PartyatthePolls at Upper Marlboro Community Center

Today we did a pop up art event at our local polling place. 
We participated in #PartyatthePolls! 
It was fun! Until there were no ballots for people to cast their votes....for hours!
Our challenge was the rules against electioneering within 50ft of the poll. I don't think that was what we were doing but the rule caused us to not have access to the voters as they waited to vote.


















I heard about #PartyatthePolls on social media. 
#PartyAtThePolls, is a nationwide initiative for artists to help make voting fun by offering opportunities for voters to be creative and experience creativity before-during-after they cast their ballots.
This National event looked like an awesome opportunity to engage with our super local residents.




Goals: Most importantly to increase the profile and conversation around art-poetry and creativity in South County  and to share through social media in the National conversation.
We are 4 South PG County creatives, artists Caryl Henry and John Lee Ranta and poets Jesse Alexander and Hiram Larew  with a special guest poet Rocky Jones from Annapolis!


 


















Our site was the Upper Marlboro Community Center-5400 Marlboro Race Track Road, Upper Marlboro, MD 20772- polling site, from 5-8pm.

The poets read poems, folks wrote about why they vote and Lee and I concentrated on conversations with voters on their way into the poll and taking celebratory selfies with them as they left. Interesting conversation were had, we met new artists that we had not known.

Most folks just wanted to vote and go home-we had a good time-learned a lot and definitely lifted up the visibility of artists in our area! Thanks to the artists and poets and our community for participating!