All people carry stories with them.
Storytellers are like vessels that carry volumes of stories from the past into present. If these vessels are strong and handled with care, stories can become histories—brought from the distant past far into the future. If these vessels become weak or broken, histories can be altered, partially lost or altogether forgotten.
The Cracked Bowl: Vessels of Freedom Stories featuring artist and painter Barbara J. Bullock, explores stories people brought with them on their journey to escape slavery. Through painting and artifact-making, this workshop digs into different views on this epic journey—from respect to indifference—held by property owners in Historic Germantown. Participants are encouraged to bring copies of old photos and family momentos to incorporate into their art and the culminating group installation. Using creativity and intuition, attendees will make objects of personal and public history that illuminate and honor many paths to freedom as well as the memories, stories and fractured vessels that carried them. This workshop will take place at Historic Germantown, project headquarters for Elephants on the Avenue. Barbara J. Bullock’s collaborating historian is Dr. Thomas Sugrue.
BARBARA J. BULLOCK is a visual artist, born and raised in Philadelphia. She was named a New Jersey State Distinguished Teaching Artist in 1997 and 2001. Bullock is also a recipient of The Leeway Foundation 2002 Bessie Berman Award and 1997 Pew Fellowship. Her work is in several permanent collections, including Pennsylvania Academy Of Fine Arts, African American Museum In Philadelphia, La Salle College Museum, Woodmere Art Museum and The Petrucci Family Collection Of African American Art. Bullock is a major advocate for integrating art into the classroom curriculum in Pennsylvania, New Jersey, Delaware.
DR. THOMAS SUGRUE is a professor at New York University and a longtime resident of Philadelphia. He writes about cities, civil rights, and racial politics and is author of Sweet Land of Liberty: The Forgotten Struggle for Civil Rights in the North. Historic Germantown is a partnership of 16 extraordinary historic houses, destinations, and museums in Northwest Philadelphia that have joined together to protect, preserve, and share some of Philadelphia's prized historical assets.