March 3, 2023 – June 4, 2023
People’s Homes is a collaborative project that honors longtime residents and investigates expanded notions of home. We began the first People’s Homes project in 2015 by pairing five Portland based artists with five senior citizens. Each artist made a small-scale billboard to honor the seniors’ life experiences, which were installed in the residents’ front yards. As our work collecting their stories was nearing the end, we were still in the process of building relationships and enjoying our collaboration.
Years later, as friendships endured the loss of loved ones, moves to other states, babies being born, and a global pandemic, we realized there was still more to explore. We are now working on a third iteration of the project focused on intergenerational connections, equity, housing, and aging in San Antonio.
We have invited a representative from five local cultural organizations to interview an intergenerational pair/group of residents. These stories will be brought together through a publication and exhibition with elements representing each intergenerational relationship in conversation with the project participants and at the residents’ homes.
This investigation is in part about bridging the indistinguishable line between the personal and political. As artists, we are interested in using creative practices to humanize, visualize, and reflect on the complex issues of gentrification, aging, and isolation.
—Emily Fitzgerald and Molly Sherman
The project is funded in part by a Texas State University Research Enhancement Grant and builds on past People’s Homes projects dedicated to telling the stories of longtime residents’ experiences with resilience, aging, and place.
Molly Sherman is a designer, artist, and educator. Her practice spans client-based work and collaborative creative projects, while operating within the overlapping fields of graphic design and socially-engaged art.
She is an Assistant Professor in Communication Design at Texas State University. Previously, Molly worked with Project Projects and the Center for Urban Pedagogy in New York. Her work has been shown at Artpace, Centre Pompidou, the Institute of the Arts and Sciences at University of California, Santa Cruz, the Matisse Museum in Le Cateau-Cambresis, the Portland Art Museum, and the San Fransisco Museum of Craft and Folk Art.
She holds a BFA in Graphic Design from the Minneapolis College of Art and Design and an MFA in Art and Social Practice from Portland State University.
An unequivocal emphasis on relationship connects Emily Fitzgerald‘s work as an artist, photographer, and storyteller. In her practice she consciously engenders direct participation and allows individual response to shape the process and outcome. Fitzgerald utilizes video and photography, and applies socially engaged form and theory to create visual art where collaboration, co-authorship and ethical-representation is primary. Her work explores the nuance and complexity of personal identity and its relationship to family, community and culture. Fitzgerald seeks to build empathy and inspire intimacy, introspection and reflection.
Her photographs aim to reveal our relationship to each other, reflected through a single moment caught in time. Photography has taught her to meet subjects as they are and explore the space between artist and subject, as full or empty as it may be. In important ways, even landscape photography is about humanity and strives to bring awareness to the way in which humans influence the natural and constructed world.