Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Susan Lenz needs our help!

Susan Lenz needs our help -- and fast!

She has a solo exhibition fast approaching (Sept. 10-October) at the City Gallery at Waterfront Park in Charleston. It will spotlight her Decision Portrait Series during the MOJA 2010 Festival. Susan's work was selected not because it "fits the theme" but because it is contemporary, thought provoking, and incorporates all people. (The word "moja" means "one" in Swahili, suggesting harmony in a global community.)

The exhibit location is gigantic. Susan said, "I'm talking several rooms spread over TWO stories." And that leads to the dillema and the request for your help. She has more than 45 finished pieces, but needs 45 more!

Susan has a blog that is specifically for the Decision Portrait Series. It is HERE! The blog opens with a "wish list". But, Susan is happy to consider just about any decision....big or small....on the list or not. [Photos are of pieces in the Decision Portrait series. First is Susan's self portrait. For more detail check out her blogsite or click on the photo. Photo 2 is Happily Ever After. Photo 3 Overcoming Domestic Abuse. Photo 4: Marked for Life. Photo 5: Behind on the Mortgage.]

Susan said,  "All I need is a signed model's release and a digital image. I'll provide the model's release and a self-addressed, stamped return envelope for those in the USA. Those living outside the country will have to furnish their own postage! Every time I finish a portrait, I share it via email with the "model" and include a "rough draft" of the intended blog post. This gives each participant the opportunity to see the work first and make suggestions about the wording that accompanies their image. Of course, all participants will be invited to the exhibition and any other future show (yes, I'm still submitting for other solo opportunities)."

Contact Susan via her email.

I've included her WISH LIST here, but please visit the blogsite to see the 45 she has finished -- you will  leave changed, touched by the faces and the simplicity of these quilts telling such meaningful life-changing choices that the people have made.

Title: Midwife. (Preferably someone who both delivers babies and has had a child at home!) Stitched words: Helping and having babies at home.

Title: Homeschooling. Stitched words: Both mother/father and primary educator.

Title: Good Samaritan. Stitched words: I changed a flat tire for a complete stranger.

Title: Terms of Marriage II. Stitched words: I signed a prenuptial agreement.

Title: 20/20 Vision. Stitched words: I had Lazar eye surgery.

Title: Dieter. Stitched words: I lost weight. (Must be a lot of weight....I'm envisioning one of those "before" and "after" sort of images...or the model inside of or holding a very, very noticeably larger pair of pants.)

Title: On Call. Stitched words: Hotline crisis volunteer

Title: CEO. Stitched words: My decisions affect hundreds (I'd prefer a rather large company!)

Title: Smaller. Stitched words: I had my stomach stapled.

Title: Hitch Hiker. Stitched words: Thumbs up!

Title: Smoker. Stitched words: Two packs a day (or something like this....must be someone who really enjoys smoking and isn't trying to quit.)

Title: On Fighting Cancer I and II. Stitched words: I chose chemotherapy over a mastectomy and I chose a mastectomy over chemotherapy. (I am interested in any other type of medical decision!)

Title: On Fighting Cancer III and IV. Stitched words: After Chemo, I wore a wig and After Chemo, I didn't wear a wig. (I am interested in any decision regarding hair loss....due to cancer or any other situation.)

Title: On Aging I. Stitched words: I've dyed my hair for years.

Title: On Aging II. Stitched words: I've had a tummy tuck.

Title: On Aging III. Stitched words: I've had a face lift.

Title: On Aging IV. Stitched words: I've had botox.

Title: On Aging V. Stitched words: Viagra

(I am interested in any significant decision that deals with a pursuit to ward off signs of aging.)

Title: I am a Woman. Stitched words: I was born a man. (Also, vice versa....any gender decision, including transvestism are of interest.)

Title: Creationist. Stitched words: Darwin was wrong and/or The universe was made in seven days.

Title: Adoption I. Stitched words: I contacted my birth parent(s).

Title: Adoption II. Stitched words: I contacted the child I gave up. (I am interested in any other decision regarding adoption, especially people who have adopted special need children.)

Title: Enhanced. Stitched words: I took steroids.

Title: Unfaithful. Stitched words: I cheated.

Title: Injured. Stitched words: I didn't buckle up. (This needs to be someone who, not wearing a seat belt, was permanently injured as a result of a car accident. Of course, it would be my honor to also stitch a photo of someone who unfortunately died....with permission from his/her family.)

Title: Thinner. Stitched words: Liposuction.

Title: Divorced. Stitched words: Irreconcilable Differences (Ideally, this would be both people...a mutual decision.)

Title: Whistle Blower. Stitched words: I turned in my employer

Title: Learning to Read. Stitched words: I taught; I learned. (Ideally, this would be two adults in a literacy program.)

Title: Marijuana. Stitched words: High on high.

Title: Astrologer. Stitched words: Spiritual advisor and/or It's in the cards.

Title: Surrogate Mother. Stitched words: I gave birth for someone else's family.

Title: Draft Dodger. Stitched words: I refused to go to war or Conscious Objector

Title: Vegetarian or Vegan (or one of each!). Stitched words: No meat. (The list could go on and be quite impressive! I'd like someone whose lived with this decision for many, many years!)

Title: Overcoming Domestic Abuse. Stitched words: I pressed charges. (This one is actually complete but I'm leaving it on the list as I'd love to stitch Dealing with Domestic Abuse with stitched words, "I didn't press charges" or another variation.)

Title: Graffiti Artist/Vandal. Stitched words: (symbol of the "tag")

Tile: DUI. Stitched words: I made a mistake.

Title: Gang Member. Stitched words: I wear my colors

Title: Neo-Nazi. Stitched words: Master Race

Title: Public Servant. Stitched words: I ran for office (Must be a non-career politician! I have a lead on this one...I hope!)

Title: Homeless. Stitched words: No Fixed Address (This can't be someone with a mental disease but someone who chose to live this way!)

Title: Illegal Immigrant. Stitched words: I want the American Dream (I don't need to picture anyone's image hiding one's identity would be perfectly fine!)

Title: Voters. Stitched words in front of three people: Republican, Democrat, Independent

Tile: Runaway. Stitched words: I left home.

Title: Shoplifter. Stitched words: It wasn't mine.

Title: Nun. Stitched words: Married to Christ.

Title: Monk. Stitched words: A Vow of Silence. (Or other wording depending on vows.)

Title: Prostitute. Stitched words: By the hour.

Title: Exotic Dancer I. Stitched words: Single mother providing for her kid(s)

Title: Exotic Dancer II. Stitched words: Paying for my college tuition

Title: Speeder. Stitched words: Too many mph

Title: Relief Worker. Stitched words: I went to Haiti to help

Title: Cremated. Stitched words: My daughter/husband/friend scattered my ashes

Title: Peer Pressure I. Stitched words: I got into a car with a drunk driver

Title: Peer Pressure II. Stitched words: I called my parent(s) for a safe ride home

Title: Accepting Help. Stitched words: I never thought I'd need food stamps

Title: Drop Out. Stitched words: I quit school

Title: Custody. Stitched words: I fought to raise my child/grandchild

Title: Boomerang. Stitched words: I moved back in with my parent(s)

Title: Bike Rider. Stitched words: I don't even own a car

Title: Volunteer. Stitched words: Giving my time for _____ (Name of cause or group....prefer someone who is a very serious volunteer donating regular hours over a period of years.)

Title: For Science. Stitched words: I donated my body to the medical school.

(I'd like a Hindi...because I don't even know how to phrase these!)

Susan adds: "I am open to creating new portraits that are similar to any that are completed....another way of depicting a similar (or even the same) decision." Contact Susan via her email. And thank you!


Gayle Pritchard said...

What a cool project. Good luck with the exhibition!

Caron said...

I could supply a photo for

Title: Adoption I. Stitched words: I contacted my birth parent(s).

Such a cool project!

P. Rovillus said...

Fortunately, I started off with extremely thick hair, but now it is getting pretty thin on top and I’ve noticed a slight receding of the hairline in front. I am so frustrated over my Doctor’s lack of knowledge and willingness to research it. I even went to a Dermatologist about it. They all just say if it bothers me to start using Minoxidil, but that is a lifelong commitment and I’m only 55 (just turned).

Susan said...

Hi Dawn!
Thank you so very, very much for posting this information. I've had many, many responses and have at least ten model's releases in the mail which will hopefully all lead to important pieces in the series. Several people also sent other leads. I'm very grateful and will be happily stitching soon!