Wednesday, May 2, 2012

Week 13: Big Hearts

Week 13 is in the rear view mirror, bring on Week 14 and the inspiration and pennies it will bring. We are at 455,000 pennies today (or $4,550.). Here is your inspiration, my friends:

"This is a picture of Melanie Karlins.  She comes to Pyramid to make letterpress cards and invitations for her micro business.  As you can see, by little sleeping Elsie in the baby bjorn, Melanie is also a mother.  Melanie has two very fulfilling and time consuming jobs.  She is an artist and mother.  I see Melanie walk that tightrope like a champ every week at Pyramid.  She sets Elsie up with her back in the letterpress studio.  She talks with Elsie the whole time she is making art. Telling Elsie about the Vandercook and the colors she is using.  She wants to  her reassure her that she is only an arms length away.  She takes breaks from her work to feed and change Elsie when she gets fussy and  I cannot resist picking Elsie up and asking her how she's doing.  Melanie is an artist, mother, wife, daughter and friend.  Whew!  That's a mouthful.  I am so glad that she is here at Pyramid.  Melanie isn't the only mom at Pyramid.  There is also Crystal with Samantha and Zac, Sarah with her daughter Audrey, Jane who brings Liberty to the studio, Maya and her daughter Masha and of course Franc (a dad) who brings his son Mateo and daughter Nora.   

4 1/2 years ago when I accepted the job at Pyramid, I came to it with the goal of creating a space where community and artists co-existed.  This was not received very well at first.  There was a great deal of fear and concern.  Would this tarnish Pyramid's artistic reputation? Change is hard, but 4 1/2 years later I am proud to see Pyramid become a place where artists and community not only co-exist but collaborate and grow stronger.  This co-existence is important to me because life's duality is something that I am very familiar with. When my folks divorced when I was 13, my mom had to assume two roles.  She became both my mother and my father. She had to both nurture and love me and challenge me and push me forward.  My father's departure also made me the man of the house at 13.  I had to be both a big brother and father to my little brother.  I helped him finish his homework and projects for school and helped him fill out forms to transfer out of our neighborhood to a better junior high school.  Being one or the other wasn't really an option.  I look back on this really painful time in my life and am grateful for it.  It taught me to believe in a life without limits.  You can be an artist and a mother, a community activist and a parent,  a soccer coach and an Executive Director of an Arts Center.  You can be as big as your heart can handle because while each additional role brings its share of work (and as Melanie will tell you, it's not easy), it also brings with it truckloads of love. I am proud that all of these people with very full lives call Pyramid home and that we are big enough to contain all of the love that they bring to Pyramid."

I hope I inspired you this week.  I hope you will join my ever growing "Penny Family" and help support art classes and workshops, internships, studios for artists and events for people of all ages at Pyramid. Its easy to be a part of the family:

If all this penny stuff is too complicated and you just want to make a contribution, you can donate in any form of currency to Pyramid Atlantic by clicking here. I will add up your donation in pennies and include it in my campaign.

I will take all your pennies to my friends at Eagle Bank.

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