We seek and involve Artists, Cultural Workers, Youth and Tiny Business partners:
We believe that ART & TINY BUSINESS are nimble, adaptable, profitable, for the people and that BELONGING means celebrating many histories and cultures and BECOMING all we can TOGETHER.
That is why:
For us collaboration means reciprocity, shared ownership and autonomy.
As a group where Education, Art and Activism intersect, the CHARLESTON RHIZOME COLLECTIVE – grassroots, inter-generational and interracial by design – launched conNECKtedTOO in 2018 as a multi-faceted experiment, being constantly imagined, forged and promoted; a project of ART & CULTURE IN/WITH COMMUNITY FOR ETHICAL, SUSTAINABLE DEVELOPMENT. This led to the creation of TINYisPOWERFUL.com, an online creative place where activities and stories generated through collaborations on the ground can be kept/rendered public. As the network grows and evolves so will the content and functions of TINYisPOWERFUL.com
conNECKted.. Rhizome… Collective… All of these words imply a symbiosis, a network, a community. Each facet of the artist/activist/educator team known as Charleston Rhizome Collective was developed on a supportive, semi-stable foundation, a wealth of varied experiences and seeds that nurture and sustain all future endeavors.
The Charleston Rhizome Collective was born out of the advocacy generated by Alternate ROOTS to develop a presence in South Carolina. Imagined as a group of autonomous individuals bringing their personal skillsets to the table, the group is comprised of educators, activists, artists, and all-of-the-above or non-of-the-above combinations of caring individuals who see the worth and importance of Tiny Businesses in local communities.
For knowing more about Alternate ROOTS and its influence see https://alternateroots.org/
Based in Charleston, South Carolina, the Charleston Rhizome Collective became an Art-in/with community group, where education, art and activism intersect. By design, it is grassroots, interracial and inter-generational. Through the arts, it aims to amplify the voices of neighborhoods absent from public and private plans: social, cultural and economic.
For the long history of the Charleston Rhizome Collective look at http://jemagwga.com/you-comin/
For the Charleston Rhizome Collective work at the World Social Forum in Nairobi, Kenya, look at http://www.youcomin.org/
For “conNECKted: Imaginings for Truth & Reconciliation” look at http://jemagwga.com/connneckted-in-progress/
The follow up to conNECKted is conNECKtedTOO, a project combining direct action with local TINY businesses to empower them in an economy overtaken by tourism and corporate development. Please move around and promote TINYisPOWERFUL.com / https://www.tinyispowerful.com/
For conNECKtedTOO the Charleston Rhizome Collective has worked with additional partners like ArtPlace America, Gaylord & Dorothy Donnelley Foundation, South Arts, the South Carolina Arts Commission, the City of Charleston Office of Cultural Affairs, the Coastal Community Foundation, the South Carolina Association for Community Economic Development, Jason Gourdine of the Black Collective, and quite a few Tiny Businesses.
The lead artists of Charleston Rhizome Collective have been Jemagwga, to be understood as a combination of the names of Jean-Marie Mauclet and Gwylene Gallimard, another combination being Gaulart & Maliclet, the name kept for the cafe more known as Fast & French. This duo of artist and sculptor spent decades creating collaborative works addressing systemic disparities and socio-economic injustices throughout France, Canada and the USA.
In 1984, they jointly opened Fast & French in Charleston, SC, a french-inspired and deeply personal bistro that remains beloved to this day. It may be thanks to its dedication to a unique structure that defies the biases and power imbalances of the usual ‘food n’ bev’ industry, and prioritizes an autonomous, supportive workspace. In turn it birthes a communal gathering spot for creatives, activists, and oddballs throughout the city. It now belongs to previous employees Jennifer Bremer and Lawrence Mitchell.