Poetry is the means by which a place comes to know itself. With a major grant from the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation, teaching artists from the Wick Poetry Center have engaged refugee and immigrant populations in the Akron, Ohio community in a cross-cultural, intergenerational conversation through poetry and graphic design and have offered people of all ages to share their voice across the divisions of language, age, and culture.
Poetry has an amazing and unique capacity to connect individuals. Traveling Stanzas works towards shaping a better future by inspiring creative and healing conversations in a society that feels increasingly isolated and divided. In 2015, The Knight Foundation awarded a grant to the Wick Poetry Center for the Writing Across Borders Project, which would empower individuals in refugee and immigrant communities in Akron to share their stories through poetry.
The traveling digital exhibit features poems, illustrations, and videos that showcase refugee resettlement in our communities. At the heart of the exhibit is an interactive touchscreen experience, allowing visitors to browse content.
Follow the exhibit as it travels to various cities around the world. With each new location, the interactive exhibit will unite communities around important topics and facilitate civic dialogues through the intimate and inclusive voice of poetry.
Over three hundred people visited the opening of the Traveling Stanzas: Writing Across Borders exhibit at Summit ArtSpace. Poets and designers mingled with members of the Akron and Kent State University communities and shared their experiences in Traveling Stanzas workshops. Visitors shared in the power that poetry has to create intimate and inclusive spaces for all to tell their stories.
Are you interested in bringing the Traveling Stanzas: Writing Across Borders exhibit to your city? Designed with a modular approach, the exhibit is ready for adaptation to various spaces—whether a library hallway or hospital lobby. With each new location, the exhibit can unite communities around important topics and facilitate a civic dialogue through the intimate and inclusive voice of poetry.
The Traveling Stanzas exhibit is designed for travel and modularity. Learn more about the package offerings Traveling Stanzas can facilitate below. Each item includes references to the diagram above.
For small, temporary spaces such as a conference or short term event.
Video of selected Traveling
➋ LEARN Temporary Project
Intro Banner, 1–2 Facilitators
➌ SHARE Thread App iPad
➍ REFLECT Temporary
➎ CREATE Emerge App
For medium sized, short or long term temporary spaces, such as a library hallway.
➊ CONNECT Connect App iPad
App with Curated Content
➋ LEARN Project Intro Panel
Installations, 2–4 Facilitators
➌ SHARE Thread App and
Temporary Large Scale Screen
➍ REFLECT Illustration Panel
➎ CREATE Emerge App iPad
Stations + Community Share Wall
For long term custom installations, either temporary or permanent, such as a hospital lobby or museum.
➊ ALL Custom adaptation of the Writing Across Borders exhibit with the Traveling Stanzas staff and a design team; customization of the Traveling Stanzas Digital Toolkit based on need and budget.
Formation of an extended partnership to develop Traveling Stanzas workshops, exhibits, and programming.
➊ ALL Design and production of custom designed installations; the production of new digital creative tools; development of programming based on need and budget; design of new workshops and creative content.
Traveling Stanzas community arts projects bring poetry to people’s everyday lives through innovative methods and digital platforms.