Commissions

Grafiti Melbourne, Aust     Carol Burnes

Grafiti Melbourne, Aust
Carol Burnes

Would you like to capture the excitement and inspiration of your organization and bring it to life for an audience? The energy of a project, what makes it unique, as well as its purpose and history can all be conveyed through story. I create and perform commissioned pieces about major public works and organizations.

Commissioned works include:

The Big Flush

commissioned by the Massachusetts Water Resources Authority

flourishphoto by Ann Fuller

flourish
photo by Ann Fuller

As Keynote Speaker I performed my commissioned story at the opening of the Deer Island Treatment Center, Boston USA. What happens when art meets effluence? In this vivid and funny story, I tell the history of the Deer Island Sewer plant, through the eyes of a curious character who simply asks, “When ya’ flush, where does it go? Didja’ evah think about that?” and eloquently traces how a harbor can be transformed from literally foul to swimmable.

Mystic, River Song

commissioned by Tufts University

The river reveals its tortured past to a young boy playing on its banks. Tracing a history from times when land was traded for wampum, to later when the tanning industries were poisoning it, to mosquitoes and malaria, and, finally, the present-day clean up where people are, at last, drawn to its beautiful green banks.

My Process

Working through dialogue with a wide variety of people involved, I gather information, often using techniques similar to those I use in my coaching. It is a highly interactive process, and the experiences, images, and words I gather and weave to create the final piece are largely drawn from people who are part of the project, so it is their story, not mine.

      Rock Veins photo by Lyn Hoopes

Veins
photo by Lyn Hoopes

For instance, when asked to be keynote, performing my piece “The Big Flush,” I knew nothing at all about sewage plants. I never considered where “it” went when I flushed. Where does it go? The entire piece grew out of that single question.

With the Mystic River story, I gathered more information through reading, and some from tours with people who worked on the clean up. The river soon became a character who spoke, but only to those who could hear it.

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