Packing and Cracking

Packing and Cracking is an Unstoppable Voters Project – a series of Center for Artistic Activism supported works that ensure every vote is counted in the 2020 U.S. election, relieve tension, and build healthy institutions in the aftermath.

Packing and Cracking

Do we choose our politicians, or do our politicians choose us? Packing and Cracking is an interactive mapmaking event about gerrymandering: the pervasive practice of politicians choosing their voters rather than the other way around. Through participatory drawing and map-drawing games, Packing and Cracking uses critical cartography, gerrymandering history, and interviews with politicians and reformers today to show how easy and disenfranchising gerrymandering can be and ask what, if anything, we should do about it.

Streaming on North Carolina’s local TV station The People’s Channel October 27-November 3! Learn more.

Created by Rachel Gita Karp and Joseph Amodei

Joseph Amodei is a new media artist, theater designer, activist, and educator. Joseph conceives of art as a powerful epistemic and emotional tool for examining assumed realities. Their work combines innovative technology, extensive research, and hope for alternate futures to invite audiences into a communal process of debriefing and re-learning. Joseph grew up in North Carolina, where they received a BFA in Studio Art from UNC-Chapel Hill. Joseph received their MFA in Video and Media Design from Carnegie Mellon. Currently, they are a professor of Immersive Media at Chatham University in Pittsburgh. (pronouns: they/them) 

Rachel Gita Karp makes rigorously-researched performances about politics and public policy. She has developed and directed new performances through The Drama League, Irondale, Mabou Mines, Ars Nova, Actors Theatre of Louisville, LaGuardia Performing Arts Center, The Wild Project, The Brick, The Flea, IRT, Dixon Place, Incubator Arts Project, SPACE on Ryder Farm, Barn Arts, Orchard Project, and Columbia University’s graduate and undergraduate schools. Rachel is currently the Beatrice Terry Resident Director at The Drama League and a Directing Fellow at Clubbed Thumb. She recently received her MFA from Carnegie Mellon University, where she held fellowships in theater and public policy. 

Unstoppable Voter Projects Throughout the Country Will Bring Art and Entertainment to Voters and Polling Places; Artists Hope to Inspire Others in Their Own Communities

In this contentious election season, many people are wondering how we can move past division and tension to celebrate democracy and our freedom to vote. Artists, in the business of storytelling and culture-making, are working around the country to turn the focus to honoring and encouraging participation in our democratic process. With this in mind, the Center for Artistic Activism created the Unstoppable Voter Project. We funded 11 of the most ambitious, innovative collaborations between artists and civic organizations seeking to increase voter engagement after receiving more than 100 applications. Artistic events will take place nationwide, with a focus on states where voters are facing barriers to the polls.

This post was originally published on News – The Center for Artistic Activism.