About Crises

The following section presents artwork from participants that speak to the forces at play in their lives that have cultivated the skills shared here. The work was generated in response to a prompt created by me and project organizer, Aaron Ochoa, which goes as follows:

Take multiple sheets of paper. The paper takes the place of your body. How has your body been impacted throughout the different traumas you have experienced? Using glue and paper, make a sculpture showing the forces that your body has been inflicted by. Write about the meaning behind your piece. Photograph your sculpture in a scene that best illustrates your idea.

My chest… the place in my soul where love and laughter once lived, dark and empty void, no heart, aching lonely wretched hole, my chest.
– Michelle M. Miller

I was homeless for four months before I had to go to jail. I went to jail for using. I was homeless because I moved from Rio Dell when my landlord sold his property. I never found another place to live because I decided to use all the time. I have been clean and sober now for four years.
– Stephanie Essig

The past in chaos is represented by the lightning in contrast to the structure of sobriety. The solid structure, the solid representation of order, the lightning is the coalesced madness, hahaha. The gift of solo solitary being kept at arm’s length. If I was involved with other people (and each of them were a bolt of lightning), chances are I would have been consumed in the sky rather than having the opportunity to find my center in sobriety.
– Tim Juranovich

I’m FREE bitches!
– Aaron Pinola

All the places I’ve been tased… the plunk sound of the hooks firing out of the gun, a sharp pinch of the skin… the crackling sound of 50,000 volts as I’m shocked. My body is stiff as I fall to the ground, but I don’t feel hitting it. Shaking from fear and PTSD… just hearing them long after all the places I’ve been tased.
– Aaron Ochoa

My scared eyes teddy bear. The gathering of animals excludes me because to them I’m an outcast with dreams of being somebody someday that will be famous. I still haven’t given up my lifelong dream of dancing my own unique choreography in a dubstep music video. Music can always be an escape, a rest from drama, a way to calm down.
– Cecila Langan

Faceless. Who am I? What have I become? I’ve been most affected by my loss of identity. I became someone I didn’t know. I couldn’t recognize my own face. I’d look in the mirror constantly to make sure I had the same face. All of the faces are me before I discovered myself. It took leaving, to find myself. Me and a duffle bag.
– Rachel Hill

I’m fucked in the head. The world has made me fucked in the head.
– Riley Clark

I’ve lost most of my family to drugs. For a while, I lost myself. I have lost my kids because of drugs, but I have to work really hard to get them back. I will spend the rest of my life making up for lost time. I will live every day with hope that I will never lose that time again. I love my family and miss them so much. I have two wonderful kids that need me and love me. I will not lose any more time with them.
– Sara Balke