Life Story Dolls
Before the Stick was born, Lori and Maria created a project called "Life Story Dolls". Lori did an arts residency for six weeks at Volunteers of America of Minnesota's Southwest Senior Center, where Maria ran an adult day program. The elders created symbolic, artistic representations of their lives by affixing gems, sanded glass, beads, tile, and found objects to bottles and filling the bottles with memories. Olga's bottle is covered with her seashell collection. Inside, you will find a stolen spoon that holds the memory of her wedding dinner. Diann's doll is made out of a huge cider bottle - with toy horses that she played with when she was a child running around the bottom like a carousel. "I still dream of trees," Melvin told us as he worked on creating a tree on his bottle. "I think it's from all of that time I spent out in the woods." His bottle is filled with family photos, a playing card, and the names of his nine sisters. Inside Janie's life story doll are lockets, beads from her sister that passed away, and a special Christmas present she received from her granddaughter.
The Life Story Dolls have been on display at Intermedia Arts, the Arts & Aging Conference, the Ordway Center for the Performing Arts, and the Southwest Senior Center. Special thanks to COMPAS for funding this project and to our camera man, Usry Alleyne.