My name is Daniel Jensen. I'm a teacher at Cambridgeport Children's Center (http://totlot.org/).
We're a Reggio Emilia-inspired co-op school in Cambridge, MA with a heavy focus on children being protagonists in their learning. To that end, many of our children are interested in cave-dwelling animals. I had visited Mass MOCA last summer and was amazed by your Cavernous installation. I thought your artwork and my class' interests paired nicely.
We've been hard at work designing and creating our own adventurous cave system.
I've attached a few photos of it, but it's been growing and morphing over the past 4 months. We started with painting and attaching cardboard boxes. We learned about geodes and crystals, and made our own to add. We created entrances, roofs, doorways, secret passages, windows, and other sections. The preschoolers wrote and drew, taped, glued, and designed. We also added some cave inspired found poetry.
While we were reflecting on our process, I was sharing information about you as an artist. A few of our students were interested to hear that we could send you a letter sharing our work. This is that letter!
They wanted you to know that:
1. We all helped making the cave. It's REALLY big.
2. You can take a nap in the cave.
3. You can be a dinosaur or any other animal in the cave.
4. The cave is darker on the inside than the outside.
5. Everyone can go into the cave.
Please take a peek at the pictures when you get a chance. It's been a pretty great learning experience for our class this year.
Thank you for the inspiration!
Preschool Teacher at Cambridgeport Children's Center.
Oh my GOSH!!! thank you for this amazing message! Sorry it has taken me so long to get back to you! You class sounds so wonderful! I had such a great time reading through your message, seeing the images, and imagining all that you and your class have been up to. How fun :) I would have loved to be in your class.
Could you please tell your class that I am really excited that they all helped build the cave. That I wish I could take a nap in there, or sleep in there for a whole winter like a hibernating bear. If I was an animal that got to live in the cave I would be a monkey that could see in the dark and climb stalactites. I am also glad that everyone can go in the cave. Your cave sounds so cool and extremely fun. I also wish I could explore it with you!!!
I really appreciate you sending this message my way :)
On a different note... My wife and I currently live in Colorado, but we are moving east in the fall and I will be jumping into a long-term project with the Peabody Essex Museum in Salem. The project is an exploration of human beings within nature. I will be passing Boston / Cambridge regularly from New York, and I would love to stop in a make art / interview your students in partnership with the project if you would be open to it. I know it will be a different group of students at that point, but I like what you all are up to and it could be a fun adventure.
Happy Spring and thanks again,