family flannelgraph christmas: SISTER, video of performance, 2m (full length: 2m 45s), 2018
family flannelgraph christmas: DAD, video of performance, 2m 5s, 2018
This performance reinterprets a common evangelical Christian storytelling method – flannelgraphs – into the context of my family. Flannelgraphs are used to teach very small children, but in this instance the audience is all adults. I did this to recapture the visual play of Christian practice that is often compartmentalized to children’s ministries. I invert other norms of the media as well: instead of a Sunday School room in a church, the setting is my parents’ living room; instead of Bible stories, personal memories are illustrated.
My family members told each other childhood stories of an encounter they had with divine joy/peace/love using flannelgraph pieces I made for them. The performance is on Christmas day. Incarnation being a central theme of the Christmas story, I thought of these narratives as contextualized Christmas stories.