Photo credit: Andi Gelsthorpe
Craft and Community Vitality Grants
Finding Our Way Home is a community built, ephemeral labyrinth. Using ripped cloth, participants determine lengths, color schemes, and patterns. Communal labor has ripped and tied the ropes that create the boundaries for the labyrinth. With the power of many hands and the intention of unity, the ownership of the final creation is shared among the community.
Andi Gelsthorpe is a mother, modern-day hunter-gatherer, photographer, social worker, community activist, and printmaker. In the spring of 2017, she spent a week at Penland School of Crafts and reconnected to her creativity. During the pandemic, Andi completed her Certificate in Expressive Arts Therapy from Appalachian State University. Recently, she received her Registered Expressive Arts Consultant and Educator credential.
In 2020, Andi secured an Artist Support Grant through the North Carolina Arts Council to create a temporary, public mural named “Be the Light.” Downtown Boone hosted the installation in the spring of 2021. Also in 2021, Andi received an additional Artist Support Grant to fund her largest work to date, “The Crooked Path of Grief,” which stood in the front yard of Watauga County Public Library throughout November 2021.
Recently, Andi’s block print work has been accepted by Art-O-Mat to be sold worldwide. Andi’s work has appeared in Headwaters: Appalachian Journal of Expressive Arts Therapy and in a local compilation publication by J.Robin Whitley named, “ For the Brokenhearted: Poems, Prayers, and Essays.”
Andi’s work focuses on connection, community, and nature. She considers herself a self-taught printmaker. Andi enjoys exploring this medium and being actively curious in her process. She believes that the act of making is meaningful in itself.
Andi lives in the beautiful mountains of Boone, NC with her husband, their son, and their two blue heelers, Rip and Frank. She can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org or followed at @soulcrafted1 on Instagram.
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