As we find ourselves fully immersed in the new year (wow 2015!) I can’t help but feel excitement and anticipation for the ongoing work of Transitory Encounterswith The Bridge Progressive Arts Initiative. 2014 wrapped up with the vision of our project and the Charlottesville community has embraced this vision, the plan for execution of our ideas and the youth we’re working with have developed amazing first iterations that put our progress in a great spot. Working with the Renaissance School has proved to be incredibly rewarding. Bailey, Alex, Theo, Mattias, Luke and Will proved to be curious, critical, open to new ideas and approached their fellow Charlottesville citizens with warmth and a generosity of spirit that uplifted my belief in the importance of the projects happening at The Bridge PAI. This infused me with a renewed understanding of the power of projects such as Transitory Encounters and the mission of The Bridge PAI.
As we move forward and look back we see that 2014 left our country and the world questioning whether we have the fortitude and tools necessary to continue the work of those generations that have come before us. Let me just say, Yes we do! If there are tools we are missing we’ll forge them. The absence of a unified voice can not be seen as a drawback or lack of resolve, our voices are scattered and embedded in every part of our society. Artists, activists, educators, are moving into the public square to join existing publics and create new ones. We are organizing and participating in media, sit-ins, poetry jams, marches, posters, videos, challenging school curricula and improvising new forms that grow out of spontaneous struggle, resistance, reform and revolution.
Here in Charlottesville I am happy to be participating in a project and with an organization that is taking a critical view of the hierarchical approach that our cities and institutions continue to employ in profit driven development of our neighborhoods, schools and community. The actions and organizing efforts I’ve seen here speak to our own communities insistence on being heard as well as included in the conversation and legislation that effects all of us. I look forward to continuing to participate in this growing dialog, to hearing your stories, visions and strategies for implementing a more just infrastructure from which we can build a new and inclusive circle of neighborhoods, communities, cities, countries and worlds.