Preliminary Questions to be answered at the beginning of your time working together DUE June 22

+ What is your starting point?

+ State 5 of the most important goals for the residency - In terms of your collaboration, the environments you are working in, the participants working with you, the consultants you are working with

+ Could you talk a bit about the relationship between your own kinetic and ecological perspectives? Do you find differences and similarities in how they generate creative activity and stimulate your collaboration?

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I went to art school, so I am "trained" in conceptual art but I
immerse myself in different creative practices each year. I am filled
with life when I see experts, hobbyists and enthusiasts charging
towards the unknown with genuine wonder. Gary uses mushrooms as a
"motor" for everything else. Mycology emerged from his need to be in
nature, his background in philosophy, his interest in experimental
music, John Cage, Marshall Mcluhan, and more. This is a curious mind
at work. I know I will learn how to exist more fully in life by listening
to Gary and carefully watching his attention. Continuing to work with
Kate, Athena, and Chris will also add depth to our lives together.


- Collaboration: I want to focus on process! My goal is to slow down,
be present, immerse myself, listen, and enjoy what Emerges.
- Environments: My goal is to become aware and attentive to natural
systems; to dislodge the numbness that occurs with visual overload and
rush in New York City.
- Participants: I hope to facilitate community, encourage long term
curiosity about mushrooms, and make a space of respect and wonder
across disciplines.
- Consultants: I must honor Gary Lincoff's integrity and wisdom by
truly listening to his ideas and desires in order to ingest and share
his approach to the world.
- Mushrooms: Success will be the infectious wonder that is mycology,
from the risk of eating your knowledge to what Paul Stammets sees as
the neural network of Gaia.


Ecological health and self awareness are paired inherently: the more I
move deliberately and slowly, the more I move with integrity for the
entire planet. I long to bring movement back into my daily practice.
Recently, three of my peers said: "When I do not paint, life feels
meaningless and I am useless. It's the only thing I'm good at." In
reaction to this, I realize that image making in visual art does not
fulfill me. Instead, I define my work in relation to others, focusing
on and intensifying the wonders of generosity and interdependence. I
follow small miracles like worms and the smiles on subways. For the
majority of my life, I felt I was most defined by moving intelligently
amidst a group, in soccer and track. 8 years ago, I went to art school
and embraced an immersion in imagination without the rigorous bodily
engagement that previously made me feel alive. For one year, in 2004,
I found an athletic creativity made possible in glass blowing. I had
to leave this epiphany to explore other materials, but I know that the
mind is a muscle; that ideas are embodied. I focus more on vantage
point, structures of participation, and my connection to the world than
image making. When I allow myself to combine imagination and movement
on a daily basis, I will be fully present. My clarity of mind in
sweating body will produce work with a tenacity that pulls others too,
into deep attention.
Kennedys Answers:

1. What is your starting point?

The starting point in most of the projects I engage in is the consideration of intention. The intentionality of any process I believe will define its value and influence the outcomes and potential extrapolations of a practice. Thus, for me personally, the determination of a sincere intention is of utmost importance, one that has deep roots in the situated community in which I am working and influenced inherently by the collection of relational activity systems that define a community: plants, people, buildings, climate etc.

Considering a collaborative practice, the idea of creating a collective intention for a project is something I find incredibly beautiful yet challenging. In considering this, the starting point for me in this project is exploring the possibility for a sincere collaborative intention that is restorative and meaningful to all parties involved.

2. State 5 of the most important goals for the residency - In terms of your collaboration, the environments you are working in, the participants working with you, the consultants you are working with

1. Collective Intention
a. One of the primary goals I would like to achieve in being involved in this project is the development of a collective intention. An intention born out of the relational exchanges, needs and individual intentions of the members of CAAKe.
2. Contemplation and Experience
a. Another goal is to allow my mind and body the chance for slow and intentional contemplation through experiential engagement with local environments and communities. I want to be able to slow down my body and observe authentically the hidden ecological and cultural layers that surround us. Focusing on the world of mycology I believe will allow for such a goal to manifest.
3. Situated Learning
a. One of my personal passions is developing experimental modes and processes of learning. I strongly believe that applied aesthetics provide communities, artists and others a tangible and realizable platform for situated learning to take form. I refer here to situated learning as a process of co-participation between learner and expert within a social practice. The potential for engagement within our own collective team and with the public will provide many opportunities to experiment with learning processes tied to social practice.

4. Communities of Practice
a. Another goal is to document the formation and development of communities of practice through StrataSpore and the unique iLand process. Communities of practice (CoP) refer to groups of experts that form through shared socio-cultural practices. Communities of practice are inherently tied to the process of situated learning and participation. StrataSpore provides an opportunity to document the process of CoP developing through an aesthetic and movement-based framework. In documenting such a process of formation, the possibility of providing a reproducible set of strategies for communities in need and manifests.

5. Applied Aesthetic Models for Restoration
a. Lastly, a personal goal for me is the experimentation of applied aesthetic models to provide a platform for ecological, social and cultural restoration. Whether this be through a physical demonstration project, dance or art object – aesthetics provide a unique framework for restoration.

3. Could you talk a bit about the relationship between your own kinetic and ecological perspectives? Do you find differences and similarities in how they generate creative activity and stimulate your collaboration?

My ecological and kinetic perspective is rooted in both the idea of ecology as a (1) dynamic model of recipricocity/exchange/interconnected systems and (2) a source and collection of energies through which to find guidance, health, spiritual guidance and wellness from. I think of ecology as a platform in which to base the needs of my body, community and mind upon - for it provides us with the greatest model of organization, mystery and continuity all at the same time! To be apart of this energetic movement is to be tied to the layers of ecology that define our body and meaning in the world. I believe the members of CAAKe will provide me with inspiration in how to tap into these layers through means I would not typically involve myself in normally. My body’s movement through space and time I rarely think of as a practice or art form and so to re-frame such a perspective will provide for me exponential inspiration and value through the investigation of the world and my place within it.
What is your starting point?

During the summer after my third year of college I worked for one of my professors, Frances Bronet, assisting on her NSF-funded research project entitled “Design as a Model for Technical Education.” The project sought to apply the design studio model of architecture to the engineering curriculum, with the end goal of providing a broad-based and well-rounded education that would equip the next generation of engineer-designers to face the complex problems of the future. (Professor Bronet is herself a dancer who holds degrees in both architecture and structural engineering). My roles were both as a coordinator of a week-long culminating workshop that divided twenty-five participants from all over the world and several different disciplines into two teams, and as a team participant. Each team was given the same design problem and several presentations on team building and collaborative processes throughout the week. We were asked to take note of our team’s process as we progressed, and to work towards a final presentation of our solution at the end of the week.

As a team participant, the results were shocking. By most measures, my team’s collaboration was an utter failure. We found that the professionals and specialized faculty on our team (as opposed to the students), who hailed from architecture, engineering, acoustics and physics, respectively, could not communicate with one another over the design problem. The expectations varied so widely and there was no common language. I have personally speculated as to why this was; it could have been that the design problem itself was too close to the engineering discipline, so the engineers felt alternately like they had authority or were being attacked.

On the flip side, I expected the other professionals to be willing, even enthusiastic, about what their individual disciplines might bring to the table (despite the somewhat questionable feasibility of the project), but instead it was as if most held an opinion that their respective specialty was too complicated or above the constraints of time, budget and relative understanding of the other collaborators to be considered. From the standpoint of a coordinator, it was absolutely fascinating to observe all the unanticipated barriers to collaboration.

I believe this experience gave me the perspective to be a participant in this project. It is both all about mushrooms, requiring a great deal of specialized knowledge, and not about mushrooms at all, but instead about finding a common platform for opening up a dialogue between disciplines which is (as understood from the workshop) not too specific to any one group.

My starting point for this project was to reflect upon the barriers and opportunities presented by observing that first creative collaboration in action. My next step, along with our team, is to learn as much about mycology as possible and then to identify what it is about the multi-dimensional topic of mushrooms that pertains to the interests of the disciplines or target groups we wish to engage.

State 5 of the most important goals for the residency in terms of your collaboration, the environments you are working in, the participants you are working with

My goals in no order are:

to extend my personal understanding of a collaborative process between disciplines by designing interactions for engaging specific groups (the events) and observing them from the outside;

to examine our own group’s collaborative dynamic through being an active participant as this project and research takes shape (and we presumably design these interactions together);

to apply this research to the development of a self-sustaining network of cross-disciplinary exchange;

to learn as much as I can about beautiful, fascinating, mysterious mushrooms, and in particular I’d really like to research and experiment with their potential as urban bioremediators;

to be inspired by and incorporate aspects of mycology, dance, art, environmental engineering and education into how I conceptualize architecture

Could you talk a bit about the relationship between your own kinetic and ecological perspectives? Do you find differences and similarities in how they generate creative activity and stimulate your collaboration?

I intuitively consider the environment and buildings in a similar sense; each is an interplay between multiple cyclic systems, an ongoing dialogue of causes and effects which become causes with effects, made all the richer for this complexity. I see architecture as literally constructing environments, which are constantly responsive to the natural environment – light, heat, water, wind. There is nothing static about this process, and I have found the unpredictable convergence of conditions that give rise to the fruiting bodies we have spotted on walks with Gary particularly inspiring.
Reading Mycellium Running,
listening to Gary on walks in Central park and the grocery store, generally listening more closely; Implementing "Above" improvisation, movement research. Recording data in little green journals (keeping track of the days it rains for a musical composition) Thinking about "what" project will be but not knowing exactly.

• Better understand mushroom physiology and my own
• Begin to develop a full length performance piece that has a narrative within
• Invent new mushroom dishes
• Expose the concept of mycoremediation to NYC
• Involve communities in our process

My kinetic perspective is really my primary mode of thinking. I see and hear but when I engage in the act of thinking, I feel. I am a feeler, and this includes sensuality and sexuality. The world to me is a feeling entity, and I too am a feeling entity. Feeling is a part of seeing. The world breathes and I also breathe, and I believe everyone affects the world and each other in small and large ways. Making art and making dance are the same thing to me; a free association that connects me to other people and to understanding the world and to my own body, the core all my perspectives. My legs are trees, my toes are roots, my back is a table whose surface holds the meal. Our stomachs resemble the shape of spoons and bowls. We have an inescapable relationship with natural forces, and by following our appetites we can re-discover, on both a macro and a micro level, that we are all bodies existing together, and that we all have potential to change the environment by following our appetites.

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