Artist in Residence with Estonian Paper and Print Museum, Tartu

Wow. Couldn't be more impressed with the folks at the Estonian Paper and Print Museum, Tartu and Estonia! We have gotten a warm welcome and the facilities are amazing. Lots and lots of historic wood type I can't wait to spend some time with. Jim and I are working on making "crankies" while we're here for a month.

“Crankies” are part of traditional storytelling traditions in remote corners of the American Southern Appalachian mountains. A crankie is a very simple idea: a roll of paper or fabric containing silhouetted images is illuminated from behind with either a candle or a lightbulb. The crankie paper is then slowly turned as a story, song or poem is performed. The people of Appalachia had very few resources, so part of the tradition is that the crankie is made from very simple materials at hand: items from nature, or fabric and paper scraps.

Inspired by this tradition, we are seeking to interpret Estonian themes using found materials to produce crankies while in Tartu. Jim will play the banjo he bought here in Tartu and will perform American folk tunes while I "crank the crankie" showing off what we have made using the wealth of resources we have discovered at the Estonian Paper and Print Museum.

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