Made in Church Hill opens Thursday at the Valentine

01/21/2015 10:55 AM by

Made in Church Hill kicks off Thursday at the Valentine with a free community opening from 6-8 PM. The exhibition is described as a collaboration “involving a variety of local cultural and educational institutions [bringing] to light the history and current challenges facing Church Hill from the perspective of its residents.”

The ever-evolving identity and personality of our neighborhood is a timely topic. The differing perspectives about greater Church Hill’s past, present and visions for the future show at Made in Church Hill reflect how varied a place it is and what many meanings this place holds for the people who live here.

Made in Church Hill, spearheaded by UR’s Laura Browder and Patricia Herrera and VCU’s Michael Lease and Traci Garland, pairs oral-history panels, sound recordings, and photographic portraits of residents and church members, many of whom live in North Church Hill, as well as others who are involved in the larger Church Hill community.

The exhibition includes a multi-channel sound piece by artist Vaughn W. Garland with portions of interviews conducted by UR students; sound poems written and performed by CHAT students; and audio clips from field recordings taken in Church Hill.

“Bringing the Richmond community inside the museum is at the heart of what the Valentine does. Our Stettinius Community Galleries are intended to be a place where residents and visitors alike can experience and discuss a wide variety of topics that affect the city. We are thrilled that Made in Church Hill is the inaugural exhibition for the Community Galleries, as this project is truly collaborative and community-generated,” said Meg Hughes, Curator of Archives at the Valentine.

Made in Church Hill was put together folks from University of Richmond (UR), Virginia Commonwealth University (VCU), Church Hill Activities and Tutoring (CHAT) and its Academy, and generously supported by the Robins Foundation, and, in part, by a grant from Virginia Commonwealth University’s Council for Community Engagement.

Additional events are planned around the exhibition that include a Community Conversation on Church Hill on Tuesday, February 3, 6-8 PM and an accompanying bus tour of the neighborhood on Saturday, February 7, 10AM-noon. The Community Conversation is free; the bus tour is $25 for the general public and $20 for Valentine Members and children under the age of 12. Reservations are required for the tour since space is limited.

On Saturday, April 18, 3-5 PM, the Valentine will host Church Hill Speaks, during which CHAT students will give spoken word performances. The event will be free and open to the public.

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