5 Reasons Why I’m an Assembler (part 1)
Reason # 5 – It’s not about Art
I’m the last person you would expect to be volunteering for an organization that has anything to do with arts education. You know how non-sporty kids often dread gym class? That was art class for me. Art class was my gym class. The place where I felt awkward, inept, clutzy, and clueless.
So why would I finally want to face my nemesis when I’ve managed to get along just fine for the last several decades without any arts education in my life? You may be guessing that I’ve suddenly discovered a hidden talent for paper mache or origami. Or that I’ve been seized with a compulsion to overcome my fear of beading.
But you would be wrong about that.
No, I still can’t cut material very well with scissors. And facing a pile of beads, wire, felt, and glue guns just makes me want to organize everything by size and color and put all of it into little containers with labels. I’m just not a crafty kind of person.
So why Assemble? And why now? Because it’s not about art. It’s about making. And making is something that speaks to even the least craft-abled soul. At Assemble, you’ll see all kinds of amazing things happen. Plastic water bottles, LEDs, and duct tape transformed into holiday ornaments, monsters, flashlights, and jewelry. A blank wall covered from top to bottom with painted ponies, signatures, cats, shapes, and patterns all in tribute to the statement “Why I Love Garfield.” Kids, adults, grandparents, teenagers, and hipsters enjoying the Garfield space together at one of the Unblurred gallery crawls.
Art-making is only one of the vehicles in use at Assemble. It’s really about place-making, community building, relationships, exploration, personal transformation, and more. It’s one of the few spaces in the city that really is intergenerational, drawing on the reserves of all ages, abilities, aptitudes and interests.
There’s a lot going on here. And it makes me, one of the more craft-challenged among us, want to be a part of it.