On Sunday, March 3, Wilmington AAP students and faculty joined community leaders in downtown Wilmington to dedicate the newest public art installation in the Wilmington Creative District: a collaboratively written poem displayed on a mural-style background.
The poem is the result of a project completed in collaboration with Creative District Wilmington and The Episcopal Church of Saints Andrew and Matthew. The University of Delaware Partnership for Arts and Culture provided the funding for the project.
Working with English professor David Teague, the students were tasked to create something that would elicit conversation, participation, and partnership between them and the reader.
“The piece they were tasked to write is that of a ‘question poem,’” Dr. Teague said. “This is a poem that will challenge a reader to think, respond and, most importantly, interact with the themes and points presented in the poem.”
Throughout 2018, the students conducted interviews with community leaders and residents. These conversations allowed them to identify common themes and storylines that were on the minds of residents. These concepts became the basis and inspiration for the poem.
“We heard a call from the community with their wish to have art highlighting the corners of Wilmington,” said Janelly Abreu, one of the student writers. “What we understood was this was not only a chance to display art but also a message. We believe this message to Wilmington delves into explaining that growth within the individual is key for growth within the community.”
The student writers performed a reading of their poem at the at the mural's unveiling on March 3. The poem is on display on the back exterior wall of The Episcopal Church of Saints Andrew and Matthew, and members of the public are encouraged to visit it during normal business hours.
“This project was an amazing one to be a part of,” said Rev. David T. Andrews, Jr., Rector at SsAM. “The students were able to capture an insightful look into the minds of the neighborhood. Their wishes, their desires and their hopes for their community.”