As a creative wing of a University that “seeks to advance scholarly and creative endeavors through leading-edge research and artistic production,” Hancher has done much to assist the creation of new pieces of performance art. It has commissioned more than 100 new works in its nearly 50 years of existence and its initiatives—such as the recent Embracing Complexity program—work to bring diverse voices to the stage.
There exists the idea that stories about food should be easy to digest and palatable, that we should avoid the bitter aspects of our entangled food histories of violence, scarcity, and exploitation.
This summer, I began my work as a summer intern at the Center for Afrofuturist Studies (CAS), an artist residency program that reimagines the futures of marginalized people by creating dynamic workspaces for artists of color. This new experience coincided with a pandemic, along with protests for racial justice and calls for the dismantlement of institutionalized racism.
This summer, I am working with Iowa Valley Resource Conservation & Development to create an audio documentary series on their Grow Johnson County initiative, a hunger relief and educational farm initiative. Working on 5 acres of land at the Johnson County Historic Poor Farm, the project grows a variety of fruits and vegetables that go directly to local food assistance agencies across the county, which according to Iowa Valley RC&D Food Systems Director Jake Kundert is currently home to over 20,000 food insecure people.
A central part of the programming work at the National Czech & Slovak Museum & Library is working in and with Cedar Rapids schools. The K-12 Learning Specialist at the museum organizes student-centered project-based learning curriculum that the museum then…
“During the pandemic I have been very careful and cautious about not being in public places and especially indoor spaces. However, the opportunity to co-facilitate the creation of a mural to empower and heal the community took precedence over my…
“At rows of blank-looking counters sat rows of blank-looking girls, with blank, white folders in their blank hands, all blankly folding blank paper.”
This summer, I am working alongside Iowa Valley Resource Conservation & Development to create a booklet that introduces readers to food traditions along the Iowa Valley Scene Byway, a 77-mile route where people of Belgian, German, Meskwaki and Czech decent (among others) live, work and eat...
In 1871, regarding a string of public concerts held in Iowa City, composer and music educator Henry Southwick Perkins wrote that “it is a very natural sequence that these public educational efforts should find the proper elements in which to propagate in these [Midwestern] States,” a mission in which “Iowa is not [a] whit behind.”
I love poetry. I love the way it looks on the page, I love the way it feels to read out loud. I love its rhythm, its images, and its power. And I love the moments when I read it with my students and it makes sense to them.