Art Activist Dinner

IMG_9571Art Activists working at the intersection of art and social justice, Betty Yu, Mark Strandquist and Courtney Bowles, joined our 5 Fellows and Hope Fund Members for dinner on a lovely Summer night.

Betty Yu’s “The Garment Worker” is an interactive media installation piece that focuses on the daily life of a garment worker and the hardships she/he encounters working in a sweatshop. Through the integration of a sewing machine, video and audio, “The Garment Worker” provides a rare look into garment working conditions that Chinese immigrants face in New York City through the personal story of the artist…The project was  dedicated to the artists’ family, who has worked in the garment industry for over three decades and in particularly to her sister, who was a Chinatown labor activist and passed away in 2010.
Mark Strandquist and Courtney Bowles’ new project “The People’s Library and Paper Collective” will work with a multitude of individuals and community partners to start a People’s Library storefront on the Germantown Business Corridor that will serve as (1) a command center for expungement workshops, legal clinics and other interventions that engage collectively with the causes, effects, and alternatives to social  justice issues in North Philadelphia; and (2) a start-up creative business and workforce- development program where re-entry adults and youth create hand-made fine papers and books from discarded paper-based material, author community histories, host open-mic spoken word and poetry readings, and lead weekly writing clubs that encourage dialogue with incarcerated friends and family.