Posts Tagged ‘ 3 Square Meals ’

Adrianna Santiago

I met Adrianna Santiago in 2005 when we were both working for Boys & Girls Clubs of Metro Denver. Like many people who devote years of their life to non-profit work, Adrianna has an optimistic outlook of the world that makes exposure to societal inequities slightly easier to bear. Adrianna was a cultural arts staff person at one of the clubs and ran the type of qualitative programming that can not be measured by pre and post tests.

One project that she completed with the kids was called Patchwork of Life; she taught the youth various photo techniques and had them explore concepts of family history and identity. The completed Patchwork of Life piece was a huge quilt of beautiful photo impressions sewn together.

Garden Project at Harm Reduction Action Center

The connection to community that Adrianna values was not lost in her graduate work at CU Boulder. Her thesis work titled Windows Out, involves a garden project at the Harm Reduction Action Center in Denver. For Adrianna, life is the masterpiece—and all individuals involved in the process of contributing to the world are the art. The culmination of her garden project and graduate work was her thesis show, where she displayed light boxes that she constructed, each displayed photographs or live plants that she created with her collaborators.

Adrianna is like a dry-processed Ethiopian coffee that tastes like fresh produce. The flavors are amazing, and when it is gone, it is gone. An excerpt from her artist statement:

Windows function as safe keepers and are positioned so that I can observe and break boundaries.  My interest in personal histories of family culture initiates engagement and serves to cultivate relationships.  The garden is a site where life flourishes and decays through natural cycles of time; an intangible connection between individuals is shared through refuge and reflection.  Light shines providing nourishment for growth.

Windows Out

Windows Out

I look forward to seeing how her 3 Square Meals project develops. A recent visit of hers to Yuma, Colorado may foreshadow what we can expect to see Adrianna involved in the years to come. Her interest in merging tradition and technology is one that I share.

I make videos because I love learning about people’s passions, and I enjoy connecting people to people by sharing their stories. While researching coffee (my obsession) over the past four years, I discovered that many creatives rely on coffee as a drug. They love what it does to their brain and how it’s a catalyst for creativity.

Coffee is complex. So are people. Drink up.