A public installation driven by community conversation, 2013

Lindsay Heights

Published on October 31st, 2013 | by adamcarr

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Franklin Square Resident Session

Over Speed Queen BBQ, we got together with William, Viola, Jamilla, AnnMarie, Lena, Kyara, and Wilbur at Franklin Square.

The event was open, as was the conversation. We began with, “Who are you and when do you feel most connected to that person?” and branched  from there, twisting in the many directions the discussion took us.

Below, find excerpts from that conversation.


Wilbur

-I’m still finding out about myself.

-I have nobody to go to. When I got a problem, I got to get in the mirror. I figure it out. Whatever it is.


William Green

-If you’ve got problems and I done been through more problems than you done been through, then I’m a little more knowledgeable on problems. I can help you more than you can help me. And I can help me because all I have to do is talk to myself.

-I was always the one in charge.

-I haven’t changed as I grew up. My mind tells me I can do things and my body isn’t able.

-I got on the Center Street bus going up to Robert Fulton — by the time I came home, my Momma know’d everything I did and said. Because all her friends were on that bus.

-They go grass out there now. When we played, it was concrete.


Viola Green

-They call me the mother of everybody. I’m the baby girl — there’s 32 of us. There was.

-From three mothers, my father was a father of 32 children. We all was raised together, all chopped cotton together, all picked cotton together. Never too far apart.

-We called ’em all ‘mama’ and they called my mama ‘mama.’ They were just like sisters.

-You — knock that chip off your shoulder.

-They know if I got it, I’m going to try to make it right. God left me here for a reason.


AnnMarie

-I got my grandma’s original cast iron skillet with the lid.

-I’m a Big Mama in training.

-When I needed somebody, I couldn’t find nobody.

-An epiphany — it got me praying for my family.


Lena Adams

-Come let me know what I told you is true.

-They see me as a challenge.

-My family — it doesn’t feel like there is that love.

-Okay. You can come over. I’ll take care of you.

-I’m not going to let this scar me — I am still whole. I am still whole.

-What about me? What about me?

-She called out their names in order.

-When she said something I didn’t agree with, I kept a smile on my face.


Kyara Howard

-I feel like I can do better by myself than have mama do something.

-I’m her favorite.

-He’s 8 months, but he acts like he’s 20.

-I love you and you about to get a whoopin’.

-My stepdad, he raised me. He taught me to drive in Mississippi. When I was ten.

-My grandma actually raised me, so I don’t call her grandma, I call her mama. You are my mama — you raised me.

-I ain’t talking to you — I’m talking to my mama.

-I was born there but raised in this city.

-My sister thinks she’s a thug, my brother thinks he’s a thug, and I think I’m a grandma.


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  • TypeFace in Lindsay Heights

    Bookshed is located between Teutonia Gardens and Franklin Square on Center Street, just off Teutonia.

    Teutonia Gardens and Franklin Square are adjacent affordable housing units at the edge of the Lindsay Heights neighborhood. At first blush, they show no sign of neglect or underuse. But as a community leader working closely with residents put it, “the facade might be beautiful, but many people living inside have experienced deep abandonment in their lives.”

    Bookshed goes beyond the cover, digging into stories and real conversation with residents of Teutonia Gardens & Franklin Square, as well as key neighborhood stakeholders. Inside—the shelves, they floweth over.

    In the Lindsay Heights neighborhood, the TypeFace team worked with Walnut Way and Maures Development to conduct a series of individual interviews with community stakeholders, as well as a series of community conversations with residents. These sessions started with two simple questions — “Who are you and when do you feel most connected to that person?” — and let the conversation flow from there. Excerpts are incorporated into Bookshed.

    Explore pieces of those conversations here.

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