Flight was an interactive shadow puppetry exhibition that took place at Artspace 304 in the Neil and Mary Ellen Dillard Media and Performance Gallery. During the pandemic, as I was home more, I became increasingly attached to the birds who shared my garden. I found comfort in the companionship of these avain compagions. The work of American poet Emily Dickinson spoke to me. Dickinson shared my love of solitude and birds. During her lifetime, she produced some 1,800 poems. 222 of those poems made reference to birds. Apart from her 150 uses of the word “bird,” she names the robin (38 times), the bobolink (12), the sparrow (9), the jay (7), the hummingbird (5), the crow and oriole (4), the wren (3), the blackbird (2) and the bluebird, the phoebe, the owl, and the nightingale. For me, each of these birds was a meditation; on Dickinson’s text, on the exquisite beauty of each bird, and the singular and fleeting nature of our interactions. Creating this piece was an opportunity for me to reflect on and bask in the beauty around me. Crafting each piece came from a place of stillness, of being present and attuned to these ephemeral meetings. I hope this installation speaks to visitors of the wild and wondrous winged creatures with whom they share brief and beautiful moments.
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