Jennifer De Leon
Jennifer De Leon led an exploration of racial and class segregation and its impact on education and student identity as explored through the lens of storytelling. She investigated walls, their impact on communities, and the power of story to break through those walls. As part of her project, she organized a community write-in in Jamaica Plain. Residents came together using the power of the written word to examine and share through an open mic their relationships with issues of identity, culture, and belonging.
Writing has always been such a solitary act in my mind, it was something I did alone, privately. I would write but not necessarily share it. But as I evolved as an artist and writer, I started to see my role differently, this program just amplified that. The fact that the program intersected with the year that we’re in politically I just felt like it turned up the dial. My role as an artist wasn’t a selfish task that I did in the corner of my room, it was something I needed to take in a broader scale to allow other people to amp up their voices.