Meet JUMP!STAR

Residence December 11, 2017 —

Jump!Star, a social sculpture culminating in a future tradition

It’s a little known fact that the North Star that was overhead when the pyramids were built is not the same star as our North Star now (Polaris). And in about a thousand years, a completely different star will be our North Star. Because of a slight wobble in the Earth’s rotation, the pole star position is not fixed. Our “guiding light” changes. We’re curious how a transition on the celestial scale would be marked and celebrated here on Earth.

Jump!Star is that celebration. It’s an initiative to work with communities to invent the traditions – a thousand years in advance – to be passed down to commemorate the eventual changing of the North Star. Plans for this intergalactic event are underway and Kansas has been chosen to be the home for the premiere of Jump!Star in the summer of 2019. The rural nature of the Flint Hills region nurtures a community of trust. The urban nature of Wichita creates cultural vibrancy. The combined strengths of these forces, in conjunction with satellites in New York, Los Angeles and Berlin, constructs a model of cooperation and collaboration that is the generative foundation of this project.

Thanks to the support of the National Endowment for the Arts Our Town Grant Program, Symphony in the Flint Hills in collaboration with Harvester Arts and Chamber Music at The Barn is presenting Jump!Star as a “social sculpture” conceived and directed by American artist George Ferrandi. We’ll be researching, rehearsing, brainstorming and prototyping until June, 2019. We’ll be developing facets of the celebration with neighbors, community members, artists, teachers and renowned scientists like astrophysicist Jana Grcevich of the American Museum of Natural History in New York and climatologist Sonali McDermid of New York University. Composer Jherek Bischoff is writing a symphony under Jump!Star’s themes. Our Kansas hosts will be presenting opportunities to work with international artists to choreograph the dances (Alan Calpe), establish the rhythms (Jee Young Sim), and sing the anthems (Mirah) of the shifting star. George Ferrandi is making large-scale, illuminated paper sculptures using Japanese “Nebuta” techniques to celebrate each of the eventual pole stars.

So…why now?

So many reasons!

  1. Contemporary technology makes it possible for us to sit in a coffee shop, plug in to nothing at all, and before we get our lattes be having real-time conversations with our friends on the other side of the planet. We are increasingly a global culture; we should inaugurate a global holiday!
  2. From the perspective of a country as young as the United States, 1000 years seems abstract - almost fictional - but there are many countries in the world that not only have existed, but have been celebrating festivals and traditions for more than a millennium. These long-running traditions become defining facets of a culture, connecting them to both their ancestors and their future generations.
  3. Planning the festivities for an event 1000 years into the future requires thinking less in terms of the human lifespan and more in terms of the planetary and celestial. This kind of mental shift will only benefit the planet at large, as anthropogenic climate change can be attributable to our disregard for long-term impacts of our actions. This necessitates a rethinking of our temporal paradigms.
  4. If popular culture is any indication, it’s become easier for us to imagine a horrific apocalypse than it is to look into the distant future with optimism. The proliferation of armageddon movies can be seen as zombie-riffic evidence of this. JUMP!STAR asks us to look forward with hope and imagine a civilization in the distant future.
  5. The rampant success of social media can be regarded, among other things, as a craving for structured interaction. Working with friends new and old on a social project like JUMP!STAR enables meaningful interaction, within a structure that empowers us to create something larger than our individual selves.

To learn more about Jump!Star, visit JumpStar.love.


Constellates

The project takes the form of a series of themed “Constellates.” During these Constellates, Jump!Star introduces participants to the project and the Jump!Star crew, and invite you to join us in inventing the cultural traditions and actions that will mark the changing of the North Star at our culminating event and beyond. More detailed information about each Constellate is in the “itinerary” section below and on the “Happenings” page. They are:

CONSTELLATE 1: COSTUMES + REGALIA

CONSTELLATE 2: MUSIC + DANCE

CONSTELLATE 3: SCULPTURE + RITUAL

CONSTELLATE 4: TRADITIONAL FOOD + FUTURE FARMS

CONSTELLATE 5: RECALIBRATING OUR RELATIONSHIP WITH TIME THROUGH FILM

CONSTELLATE 6: SKY + STARS + STORIES

We will update this page with dates and descriptions once they are announced.

To learn more about the Constellates, please click HERE.

ITINERARY

December 11, 2017
Jump!Star officially announced. Full itinerary coming soon!

February 28, 2018
Introduction to Jump!Star: A talk by George Ferrandi at The Ulrich Museum of Art. See the Happenings page for more information.

March 2, 2018
Constellate One focuses on COSTUMES + REGALIA: Part 1: Presentation. How to Dress for Celestial Events Harvester Arts

February 3, 2018
Constellate One focuses on COSTUMES + REGALIA: Part 2: Creative Action. Cyanotype Sun-Printing:Recording Ourselves Through Our Objects McKnight Art Center, Wichita State University

March 5, 2018
Jump!Star Sounds: Concert with musical members of the Creative Team $20 Fisch Haus, Wichita, KS

March 6, 2018
Part 1: Presentation. MUSIC + DANCE: Researching the People’s Dance Candella at the The Lux. Wichita, KS

March 10, 2018
Creative Action. MUSIC + DANCE: Creating and Dancing the People’s Dance Pioneer Bluffs Barn, Matfield Green, KS

Satellite ARTISTS

For each Resident Artist, at least two local Satellite Artists or groups are selected. Satellite Artists are tasked with taking an aspect of the Resident’s work, process, or ideas and creating new work in response. Satellite Artists have the opportunity to work closely with the Resident Artist. Satellite Artists may collaborate or produce independent work. Satellite Artists are responsible for an exhibition and receive a stipend of $250 each.

Become a Participating Artist

Interested in participating with Harvester Arts? Harvester Arts is open to all art forms but does focus on installation and performative projects. Our residencies offer an opportunity for an artist to develop and experiment.

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