Horse Cave Heritage Festival
In the fall of 2018 and 2019, I helped the Kentucky Folklife Program and fellow cohort members set up and present a series of narrative stages at the Horse Cave Heritage Festival, in an annually recurring program called “Chattin’ on the Porch.” During this program that is open to the public, we bring groups of individuals from the area surrounding Horse Cave, Kentucky. The first year that I was a part of this festival, I helped Brent Björkman present two local artists on stage as we discussed how their art had helped and influenced them throughout their lives. In 2019 I helped Joel Chapman as we presented a trio of local musicians who run a regular jam session in Horse Cave. I joined them when they presented their music by playing my fiddle along with them, as they presented examples of the music that they play. I also performed a variety of other tasks including sound mixing, audio logging, photography, shooting video, and setting up and breaking down sound equipment.
Hammer-In Hosted by the Kentucky Folklife Program
For the past several years, the Kentucky Folklife Program has hosted a Hammer-In at the Kentucky Museum. The annual event has only grown in popularity since its inception in 2016, and has even spawned the Kentucky Forge Council, which meets on a monthly basis. For this event, I helped to bring a public event to Bowling Green and the surrounding communities, as it involved people from all walks of life, including everyone from professional blade smiths, to individuals who wanted some hands-on learning experience for something that they might not be able to experience in their daily lives. My duties included photography, videography, set up and tear down of audio equipment, allocation of duties to volunteers, creating volunteer schedules, among a variety of other duties.
Internship with Missouri Folk Arts Program
In the summer of 2019, I interned under the director of the Missouri Folk Arts Program, Lisa Higgins. My duties during this internship included the transcription of three short (10-15 minutes) videos, one longer transcription of over an hour with senior Missouri Folklorist, Elaine Lawless, the transcription of a longer gallery talk with two blacksmiths, and two blog posts about summertime music in Missouri. I spent my time researching festivals, attending jam sessions, and exploring the music scene of Southwestern Missouri.
Evaluation of my internship by Lisa Higgins
National Basketry Organization Gathering Exhibit
In the late spring of 2019, I worked with Brent Björkman and Beth Hester in order to curate an exhibit for the National Basketry Organization Gathering. The exhibit was focused on the White Oak Basket tradition of the Mammoth Cave region. The exhibit explored the historical importance of the White Oak Basket tradition, as well as highlighted several families who are known in the region for their skill as basket makers.
The Residency of Renesito Avich
From March 27 – 29, 2019, the Kentucky Folklife Program hosted the residency of Renesito Avich, a Cuban musical artist, for WKU’s International Year of Cuba. I assisted with this residency by assisting with the grant writing. The granting agency was South Arts for their Traditional Artist Touring program, and I worked closely with Brent Björkman as we crafted the grant proposal, budget, itinerary, and worked with the Music and Dance departments in order to help bring Renesito Avich to the campus of WKU. During this period, I also assisted with suggesting and finding locations on campus where Renesito could perform and hold master classes.
Kentucky Crafted: The Market
In the early spring of 2019, several members of my fellow cohorts helped develop a special, hands-on exhibit at Kentucky Crafted: the Market, called “Woven Treasures.” The exhibit/workshop included panels from a traveling, pop-up exhibit on the historical, and continued importance of the White Oak Basket Tradition in the Mammoth Cave Region of Kentucky. I helped my cohorts teach basic basket making techniques to visitors of all ages, including weaving with reeds and alternative weaving methods for younger individuals who wove strips of construction paper through pre-cut paper “looms.”
Homer Ledford Award
Every two years, the Kentucky Folklife Program presents an award to an outstanding luthier in the state of Kentucky. In the spring of 2019, during the second day of Kentucky Crafted: the Market, the Kentucky Folklife Program presented the award to Glespie Ray Deweese, a guitar maker from just outside of Bowling Green, Kentucky. My duties during this time included assisting with writing a press release, a newsletter, contacting the nominee and nominator, as well as doing fieldwork with Brent Björkman. At Kentucky Crafted, I assisted Brent Björkman with presenting a narrative stage that included the nominators and the awardee.