If you’re passing by the Leftbank Project, you’ll notice a pod on the triangle lot. For Leftbankers – look out your western windows. It looks like someone’s moving, I know. But really, the pod is a cleverly disguised traveling exhibition of an art initiative that has stolen my heart! It is Show + Tell – a compilation of artifacts from this year’s creative programming instigated by the Right Brain Initiative.
Rebecca Burrell kindly offered me a private tour of the pod yesterday. I confess that I was skeptical about the inspiration I might take away from a 12 foot moving crate sitting on the black top in the Annex back lot. Couldn’t have been more wrong. The tiny space draws you in and packs a punch. The walls are papered with children’s artwork. Kids’ voices in videos documenting joyful collaboration with community artists become this irresistible soundtrack. Found myself hoping the pod was a portal that would transport me into the classrooms. This life changing stuff is happening in ordinary schools, for ordinary kids, because of this partnership created by the Right Brain Initiative. In their words: “The Right Brain Initiative comes from a recognition that creativity is an aspect of human wellness – not a rare and unevenly distributed gift.”
2009-2010 was their first year working in the Portland tri-county area. In the first year, they reached 11,000 K-8 students in 23 schools! Their goals are long-term and far reaching. They intend to bring creative learning opportunities to all children in the 240 K-8 schools of the region. They’re working now to spread the word, increase support, and broaden their reach in schools.
From now through at least July 2nd, the pod will be on Leftbank’s triangle lot. Right Brain invites you (and I urge you!) to stop in and have a look around. You might come away with a creative spark of your own or see a way to add your efforts to the work. At the very least, you’ll have a lovely look around at what community minded artists and inspired kids can come up with together. Beautiful.
The pod is open for exploration by luck, by appointment, and from 4:00-6:00 on weekdays. Contact Rebecca Burell for more information and for scheduling.