Monthly Archives: October 2010

October 2010-Thank YOU for making Peoplehood a success


Spiral Q’s Peoplehood Parade and Pageant Makes for Good Community

The Giant Puppet Extravaganza Brings Neighbors Together,
Highlights Power Of Spiral Q’s Mission

This summer, Spiral Q board and staff members reworked the organization’s mission, shifting from “Illuminating the victories, frustrations and concerns of communities…” to its more participatory and active, “Spiral Q Puppet Theater builds strong and equitable communities characterized by creativity, joy, can-do attitudes, and the courage to act on their convictions.” Peoplehood is one of the events and mechanisms through which Spiral Q pursues its mission.

This Saturday, for the 11th consecutive year, Spiral Q’s Peoplehood Parade and Pageant helped bring neighbors together to celebrate and learn from one another while participating in the pursuit of Spiral Q’s mission. 30 diverse community groups participated in the story-telling, art making, parading and performing process that Peoplehood creates. It’s the range and depth of community supported by Peoplehood that has made it such a cherished event by neighbors. When a group of 17 senior citizens joined the culminating giant puppet parade in wheel chairs decorated with glittery hearts, scores of teens spontaneously and continuously chanted, “L-O-V-E! That’s the way it ought to be!” down the streets of West Philadelphia. Neighbors and participants were equally touched.

Lena Buford, whose group from Mariposa Food Co-Op marched in the parade said, “About 6 years ago back in 2004 I was wandering through West Philly on an October day deciding if I wanted to live there. It just so happened that it was the day of the Peoplehood parade, and I thought – if this is West Philly, then West Philly is for me. I have lived here ever since. Spiral Q’s work and the Peoplehood Parade in particular are huge assets to the community and really reflect some of the things I love about kooky, creative, grassroots, caring West Philly.”

Anne Margrethe, who leads the Art Therapy Unit at Girard Medical Center, a residential, substance abuse and recovery center, said, “It’s one of the most fantastic experiences that our clients have. It’s a powerful day. The beauty of it, the sheer colors and creativity that we all experience is profound. Everyone is so welcoming here. It makes people feel really valued and important in society. It’s certainly one of the highlights of our year.”

West Philadelphia Cultural Alliance president and Paul Robeson House CEO, Fran Aulston, had this to say about Spiral Q and Peoplehood: “It’s like a family reunion and people from all over the city come here. It helps us support our mission; To create community and create arts and opportunity for those from West Philadelphia and beyond. We get to share experiences and we all become advocates for one another and the arts. Thank you, Spiral Q, for your energy and passion and integrity in serving your mission! I love you.”

The following groups participated in this year’s Peoplehood: The Paul Robeson House, The Peoplehood Band, Build On, Girard Medical Center, The Factorye, W. Philly Cooperative Preschool, Park Pleasant Nursing Home, Walnut Hill Comm. Assoc., Promethius Radio, ACT-UP Philadelphia, New Life Consumer Center, Neighborhood Bike Works, New Freedom Theater, The Harris Steppers, Youth Build Philadelphia, The Enterprise Center CDC Street Team, United Block Captains Association, Mariposa Food Cooperative, Philly BDS, Philadelphia Outward Bound, Project Home, Broad Street Ministries, Tasker Elite, Village of Arts and Humanities, Montessori Genesis 2 School, Teens 4 Good, Jane Addams Place, and Friends of Clark Park. This program would not have been possible without the generous support from PNC Arts Alive.

PEOPLEHOOD is Spiral Q’s annual artistic response to the times. It is our joyful, festive demonstration that we as people can come together, grapple with the issues of the day, and respond meaningfully in the streets. Through a giant puppet parade and pageant we offer a magical, relevant and participatory process for Philadelphians to create a new vision for our world…

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October 2010-Spiral Q Collaborates with Michelangelo Pistoletto and the PMA


In 1967, the artist Michelangelo Pistoletto rolled a ball of pressed newspapers through the streets of Turin, Italy. Bringing this artistic vision to life in a city’s streets was truly groundbreaking 43 years ago. Pistoletto was one of the founders of the Arte Povera Movement, which sprung from the idea of making revolutionary art that was completely free of conventional practice. Pistoletto is also widely considered to be a major contributor to the minimalist, conceptionalist and pop-art movements. When the Philadelphia Museum of Art (PMA) decided to kick-off this major retrospective of the artist’s works with a reenactment of his 1967 Turin walk, who better to invite to fabricate the famous ball and help lead the walk through Philadelphia’s streets and other public places than Spiral Q? Join us on Saturday at 1:30pm at the PMA’s West Entrance when Pistoletto and Spiral Q depart to reenact this historic event. FREE and open to the public. Rain or shine.

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October 2010-11th Annual Peoplehood Parade and Pageant


Spiral Q’s Peoplehood Parade and Pageant is Saturday, October 23rd

The Giant Puppet Extravaganza Brings Neighbors Together,
Celebrates Our Stories and Creativity

PEOPLEHOOD is Spiral Q’s annual artistic response to the times. It is our joyful, festive demonstration that we as people can come together, grapple with the issues of the day, and respond meaningfully in the streets. Through a giant puppet parade and pageant we offer a magical, relevant and participatory process for Philadelphians to create a new vision for our world…

This year, Spiral Q has been engaging with groups to discuss how we creatively respond to discrimination. See how heartfelt concerns that lay deep in the fabric of our community are conveyed through the loving and creative process of giant puppet pageantry. See your neighbors carrying personal symbols of identity and transcendence through the streets of West Philadelphia. See young and old perform together in Clark Park. See Philadelphians of every shape, size and hue work things out through play and creativity.

Peoplehood is much more than the spectacle of a giant puppet parade and performance that annually brightens the streets of West Philadelphia on a fun October, Saturday. Peoplehood is a community-building process that brings neighbors together to think about issues and topics that are important to us. Then, in working with Spiral Q artists, these ideas are transformed into huge puppet art, and finally worked into meaningful parade and pageant performances that EVERYONE gets to perform. It’s a fantastic way to get to know your neighbors and community.

Come out to Peoplehood. Walk in the parade or wait for it to arrive at Clark Park and then watch the giant puppet pageant tell a true community story. Peoplehood is like no other Philadelphia tradition. Help us bring this year’s Peoplehood parade and pageant to life! This year’s Peoplehood is made possible through the generous support of PNC ArtsAlive, letting everyone “be part of art.”

PARADE: 1pm at The Paul Robeson House, 50th and Walnut Streets
12pm if you want to join in!

PAGEANT: Watch the pageant around 2pm at Chester and 45th streets. Pack a picnic!
Bring friends and family!

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