“Align the Fibers of Self” Research Process
Footage taken at Hunter's Moon Residency 2019, ModFarm at Tryon Farm, Michigan City, Indiana.
Align the Fibers is the name of Precious Jennings collaborative work, a living ensemble of creative individuals interested in building performances to enrich our own skills of making in tune with nature and the practices that create curiosity and enrich our surroundings. Align the Fibers is about coming back to the material of self, it is forever in transition and transformation as we arrive at collaboration. It is our vital practice of movement, dance, meditation and contemplation, research, experimentation, music, singing and sounding which includes coming to natural states in nature. Ecology of collaboration, how we align our own beliefs, hold space for others, assimilate and honor diversity and include that in how we traverse land, body and voices to begin resonating with sustainable practices of production in all forms of making.
The solo project title, “Align the Fibers of Self,” came after my time at ModFarm, (I have shifted this to “Align the Fibers” to encompass it is not just about me in this process). As I swung in my hammock waiting for mordanting fibers and boiling plant material, I had time to think about: how did I get here? I have been asking this question about sustainability as an artist and creative process for years. I went to my history. I remembered how my mother would take us on drives “looking in the ditches” for plants that she used to dry for crafts. My mother is a creator. I grew up making things with her; she taught me to sew, knit, crochet, cook, cut hair, and most importantly: follow my instincts. Her parents were corn and animal farmers; she grew up on a farm until the age of 18. When not working on the farm, her parents made hundreds of quilts and her aunts and grandparents made lace. I didn’t get to meet most of my family as an adult, so when I play my grandmother’s guitar or finish an unfinished quilt, it is as if I am continuing my heritage and possibly some unfinished dreams.