This workshop is modeled after handmade doll making in West African traditions where such dolls are manufactured as magical symbols imbued with power. The objective of this type of craft is to metaphorically return to infancy and work with people and archetypes that were important to us, whether that be our mothers, grandmothers, aunts, nannies, or any other caretaker; as well as characters that influenced our imaginations. For that we are going to go through a series of steps and rituals that will remind us of stages of fetal creation in our mother’s wombs, and simultaneously create the dolls as we go through those stages. This journey uses the tools of scissors, needle, and wool, as well as different colors of thread which are selected by our imaginations.
This new symbolic birth allows us to empower the Goddess we carry within for it connects us to our inner girl who is creative, imaginative, happy. We will also be able to charge this amulet with names of Goddesses who resonate with us. Following in the West African tradition, we can use colors that are identified with Yoruban deities.
Before the crafting portion of the workshop, we will have a short anthropological discussion and reflection on Latin American water Goddess and ask them to allow us to navigate the river of the creative feminine.
Instructor: Dr. Marisol Cardenas O. holds a PhD in Symbological Anthropology. She studied at Universidad Autonoma Metropolitana, Mexico. She specializes in semiotics (the study of signs and symbols and their use and interpretation) of the body, sense, and Latin American and African Pop art. She has done research in Cuba, Mexico, Colombia, Ecuador, Peru, Bolivia, and India. She is currently a visiting scholar at the UC Berkeley Department of African American and Gender Studies.