Community Documentation Workshop

Philadelphia Folklore Project

2009
$70,000

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Palestinian needlework (tatreez) artists Wafai Dias, Maisaloon Dias, Alia Sheikh-Yousef, and Nehad Khader look at work. Tatreez patterns from women’s home villages, now occupied or destroyed, are assertions of Palestinian history. From the exhibition Tatreez: Needlework of Palestinian women from Philadelphia, curated by Nehad Khader. Photo courtesy of the Philadelphia Folklore Project.

The Philadelphia Folklore Project (PFP) worked with a small group of community participants from diverse immigrant groups in Philadelphia for an intensive eight-month training program in documenting community history and folklore called the Community Documentation Workshop. The training helped participants to develop the necessary skills to document a variety of cultural experiences in their own communities and provided them with opportunities to develop exhibitions based on their research and findings. PFP used this pilot project to develop ongoing workshops and a new, community-driven approach to exhibitions.