PROJECT: Create a Community Meal
The Community Meal table extended for 1/2 mile along Victoria Street, from University Avenue West to Minnehaha Avenue West. Overall, one square mile of city streets were closed for the meal, providing space for the rituals of entry, greeting, food service, and departure.
Description: This socially engaged public artwork was led by artist and Frogtown resident Seitu Jones, in collaboration with a cohort of artists that included paper maker Mary Hark, Ananya Dance Theatre, visual artists Cliff Garten, Emily Stover and Asa Hoyt, poets G. E. Patterson and Soyini Guyton, and spoken word artists led by Tou Seiko Lee and Deeq Abdi. As Seitu noted, all 2000 diners were artistic collaborators as they engaged in an artistic ritual of a meal, spoke words of grace and closing, and shared food stories of the world cultures that comprise our community.
Victoria Street, St. Paul MN
St. Paul, MN 55104
Public Art Saint Paul
Banner, Environmental Art, Performance, Signage
Landscape/Envirnomental Art, Paper, Plant material
Create the Community Meal, was on September 14th. It was focused on healthy eating, a table prepared for 2000 people, half a mile long. Starting form University going all the way to Minnehaha. It was located in the middle of the street. This small meal was before the big Community meal which was with Seitu Jones on August 2014.
Melvin introduces the "Mayor of Aurora St. Anthony!"
His Indian name is Blue Sky, he nets and fries fish for living. He started at the sage of 16 and he is 50 now.
Daniel Salinas father still grinds corn using a Molcajete (which is used for grinding seeds, nuts, spices and herbs, and to make a variety of seasoning pastes and salads) and makes his corn tortillas at the age of 84. His mom is 88 years old, they have their own garden and that's where they get their food from. Three generations of his family have been here in Minnesota. His favorite food is Tamales and a homema
A homemade Tamale
A homemade Menudo
Seitu Jones interviews Jonathan, he was born in Haiti and raised in Saint Paul. He talks about some of the foods he can prepare and how he finds eating together more enjoyable as a family.
Metric M Giles is a urban farmer in the community, an environmentalist, social activist and one of the big brother in the community.
Sarah Revira was raised as a vegetarian. Her dad was a strict vegetarian but, they were allowed to have turkey and fish only on holidays. After she went out on her own the first thing she did was get a big cheese burger. She also loves lobsters but her favorite food is fried bread with coffee in the morning.
Tisha Salinas is the meal host for the day, and a guest on other meetings. Melvin introduced her to a garden tool box and that's how she started planting her greens in her backyard.
Seitu Jones interview of Woman in blue shirt and hat (the sound isn't clear but she said her name in the begining). Her most memorable food story is from Thanksgiving holiday. Where they come together, eat, laugh and argue. Her favorite food is Turkey, greens, Mac and cheese, mashed potatoes and gravy, dressing and cranberry sauce.
Nayita Presley has childrens and also cooks for them. She learned how to cook from her mom. Both her daughter and her son can cook. Food to her is Fellowship because it gives an opportunity for people to have a common ground and a shared vision right away. "Food is Food."
Mark Collins is the assistant manager of the story mobil over there, a poet, a brother and a basketball player. He learned how to cook from his mom because he had to sit in the kitchen and help whenever he got in trouble in school for bad behavior. That's where he learned most of the recipes.
Multi-disciplinary artist and community organizer Seitu Jones (BF’92, ’04) has built a career around public art commissions that align with causes he believes in. He applied his Bush Fellowship to a liberal studies master’s program with a horticulture sciences emphasis at the University of Minnesota. With the educational tools gained there, he co-founded and volunteers regularly at Frogtown Farm, an organic farm in the Frogtown neighborhood of St. Paul, Minnesota.
Sheronda Orridge used to watch her grandmother cook at the age of three, her grandma also used to give her small amount of food for her to prepare. They used to get together four times a year on her grandfathers side, it was always around food. She taught her daughter to cook and her daughter cooks on her own on some holidays.
These are the short clips of the full interview. For the full videos check out the page CREATE.
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This page references:
- Seitu Jones interview of Sheronda Orridge for Create the Community Meal
- Logistics of Dinner
- Seitu Jones interview of Daniel Salinas
- Seitu Jones interviews Mark Collins (assistant manager of *something* over there)
- Seitu Jones interview of Tisha Salinas (meal host)
- Seitu Jones Community Meal Legacy
- Melvin introduces the "Mayor of Aurora St. Anthony!"
- Seitu interview of Dennis (Blue Sky) Ert (?) who Nets and fries fish
- Seitu Jones interview of Woman in blue shirt and hat
- Seitu Jones interview of Sarah Revira on her food story
- Seitu Jones interview of Jonathan [Sebastu?]
- Seitu Jones interview with Nayita Presley
- Seitu Jones interview of Metric M Giles
- Mexican food