project: Chandra Brooks

Storytelling Kit

This workshop used a kit created inside the FabLab allowing participants the opportunity to create prints from the handcrafted source material.

The art of storytelling is as old as humanity itself. Every man, woman child & animal has a story; the question is, "How do I tell it"? The answer is start with someone else's tale that you can identify with, see how it's done, tell their tale first and then begin your own.


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La Rate Blanche is a medieval French (Auvergne) folktale from the collection of Henri Pourrat. What makes Pourrat special is that he wrote the stories of the common man in a language and style that is distinctly regional and colorful in character. It is easier to compare Pourrat to the Grimm Brothers than the more famous French folklorist, Perrault. His unorthodox techniques and the lack of appropriate acclaim (during his lifetime) have kept me motivated and inspired during this 4-year project but it is the tales themselves and their timeless grace that will make storytellers of us all.

Workshops: Everyone will leave the workshops with materials to give their own readings of Henri Pourrat's 'La Rate Blanche', in his original French or English. We will construct shadow-puppetry kits, coloring books & a light show in the process of laser-cutting cardboard versions of my light-cuttings. Live music & a French narrator are on hand to work through the production process.

Materials: Participants will be working with all of the materials from my storytelling project. All of my work is produced as original: hand-painted, hand-written, block-printed, hand cut pieces.
-TEXT: A medieval French manuscript, an early Renaissance English version, and a Chinese scroll.
Calligraphy (Carolingian miniscule +3 alphabets which adapt this hand with Renaissance virtuoso
calligraphers such as: Georg Bocskay, Giovannantonio Tagliente & Ludovico degli Arrighi
-IMAGES: Miniatures based on international medieval styles. "Stained Glass" based on Salisbury cathedral motifs.
Light cuttings.

Location: Waag Society (3rd floor Media Lab)
Pakhuis de Zwijger, Piet Heinkade 179, 1019 HC Amsterdam.

Time: 10:30-1pm.
Cost: None
Ages: Children and their parents of all ages are welcome.