I’ve been working in a social practice on and off for about 10 years. In my experience, socially engaged work is messy- physically, conceptually, socially, emotionally, joyfully messy.
And, the mess is needed. It’s where the most fun, interesting, useful stuff happens; where people can use creativity to be vulnerable, to ask questions, to solve problems, to understand our own culture(s) and communities, to create change.
The mess is also exhausting, draining, confusing.
“Mess Making as Social Glue” is me thinking and learning about this. Talking to and collaborating with people who who have been / are involved in socially engaged art and in other social practices- paramedics, councilors, social workers. Together making common spaces (physical, digital and imagined) where we can begin working our way through and around the mess. Loving it, embracing it and starting to develop techniques for managing it; recognizing the times when tidying up it needed and finding people who can help.
This is a little intro and an invitation to get involved. In response to my own experiences and having chatted to lots of social practitioners over the last few years I’m creating a digital, physical and imagined set of resources aimed at helping organize, contextualize, recover from and get back to enjoying- the mess. If this sounds like your sort of thing you can following this link to find out a bit more about it all: https://www.lladykitt.com/social-practice-1st-aid-kitt