~ Photos of the Poet-Tree Installation created and organized by Maria:
see below for details (and visit the Poet-Tree 2015 page on Facebook)
~ Poetry oracle jars and boxes: themed and one-time designs
~ Edited volumes and poetry monographs spur from the font of heart inspiration
and lived experience: see more here
2015-2016: “Toronto 2015 Pan Am / Parapan Am Poet-Tree Project” at York University, 2015.
Maria created and curated on site and online installations of poetry from the 41 countries represented in the Toronto 2015 Games. The Poet-Tree 2015 four-part event, related to the 2015 Pan Am / Parapan Am Games as an IGNITE community partner, was a timely way to engage with university students and youth (secondary school) and the community in dialogue about Pan American cultural topics relevant to them as they witness current global, national and local questions that shape the world in which they live and their future. Taking as a starting point the intercultural representation of poems and poet’s names written by Canadian youth and poets from the 41 Pan American countries celebrated excellence in sport and a collective spirit of the culture of each place, the Poet-Tree 2015 event highlighted this connection across the Americas to the Toronto 2015 PanAm / Parapan Am Games, calling attention to arts, culture and identity are celebrated through the values of “joy, results, accountability, collaboration and results” as key objectives of the 2015 Games. (Jan.- Aug. 2015) It also produced an offspring in the form of a book, an anthology of poets of various generations, in celebration of Pan American arts and sports. See here for more details and for a free e-copy of the book:
The project's main onsite installation was located at the Founders College main common room on York University's Keele Campus (also a site for some of the Pan Am and Parapan Am Games). Members of the university, including students at the undergraduate and graduate levels, also contributed to the selection of poets and in creating original art and poetry that was added to the installation onsite, as seen above in the photos, and/or in the online photos of the exhibition and/or in the video created by Maria in collaboration with Tom Jeffrey, who also contributed artwork for the project.
From 2014 to 2015 Maria served as an invited member of the Latin American Working Group, TO2015 Pan American/Parapan American Games, a Community Outreach department of the TO2015 Latin American Steering Committee for the Pan American and Parapan American American Games. Afterward, she also applied for and received the aforementioned Ignite Community Project for which she was awarded an Ignite Community Project designation of the Games.