It was an exciting first week at the family residency at Marble House Project. Something very special happens when the families arrive. There is an immediate sense of home that is brought about by all the children running around. Not only do the residents arrive as a family, they join other families to create a larger family network that will be living together for two weeks. Marble House Project has specifically put in a system that will work with this new Network of Families. As the parents slowly adjusted to their new home and studios at Marble House Project, the children adjusted to each other and their style of working.
This year we have 9 children ages 4 through 11. Perhaps it is the environment, perhaps it is the excitement they felt from their parents, but the children immediately connected with each other. While their parents are in the studio, MHP offers an Art and Environment Camp, The day camp is led by two graduate creative art therapy students and 3 Teen interns ages 13-16. The cross generational experience is important to us because it mimics the multi layered, or biodiverse eco system that we find in healthy environments in nature and in communities. On the first day, kids painted canvas tote bags which they used to collect sticks, rocks, moss, and other natural materials they found in the environment. On day two, the marble house kids used clay to sculpt creatures which they incorporated into their own little glass bowl worlds that they filled with the natural materials they found. We wanted the children to experience being in a diverse eco system and making one themselves because it is part of our way to explore the impact we make and can make on our environment. Going out into Nature and being the creatures in the Glass Bowl we call Earth, and then creating and being a Master Creator of an environment is a fundamental building block for our understanding of how we impact the world around us. The week concluded with the children breaking up into three groups and working together to make yarn installations in the woods, which the kids will remove at the end of the residency. In between the art making and nature walks the kids have managed to picked blueberries, make blueberry pies and blueberry Jam and harvest greens from the garden for dinner. We have to mention that of course each day included swimming in the Marble House quarry pool, outdoor sports and great lunches on the Shaded porch of the Barn. We have been happy to see bonds forming between residents of all ages, and are looking forward to week two!