The Inheritance Process

The Inheritance Process is a dynamic, adaptable series of inquiries designed to yield community-sourced messages and visual metaphors.  It is a process that intends to foster both self-reflection and expression, as well as collectivism.  The process can be used to inform a number of creative and artistic practices, but is especially suited for public art such as murals and posters.  It is also designed to be relevant to multi-generational groups, but is particularly suited for youth aged 6-30.

Through individual and collaborative writing, drawing and grounding exercises, a group answers a series of simple inquiries.  We ask, “What do you want for your personal future?”, “What do you want for your family?” and “What do you want for your community?”.  Finally, we ask, “If another world is possible, what does it look like?” and “How do we get there?”.

Self-documentation is another facet of the Inheritance Process.  As our world continues to be more and more defined by imagery and digital representations, we believe it is important that communities develop skills that allow them to document themselves in their own voices.  We document with peer-to-peer interviewing, video and photo, digitla archiving of materials created through the process and reflective and analytical writing.  The self-documentation process is augmented by the following reflections: “What am I
inheriting?”, “How do I inherit myself?”, “What inheritance am I building to leave for those that come after me?” and “How will I actively bestow that inheritance?”.

One of the central long-term visions of Inheritance Process projects is to utilize new media and online platforms to bring transnational and international communities into dialogue with one another.  The Inheritance Process was piloted in Ciudad Juarez, Mexico through a high-profile mural project at the Clinicas de Hip Hop organized by 656 Comics and Colectivo Fundamental.  Currently, we are piloting different versions of the Inheritance Process with organizations in New York and Brooklyn, as well as pursuing grants and sponsors for international projects.  The intention is to execute this process in a number of different places, and then use blogs, video, social media and Skype to bring the groups together to learn from one another and find their commonalities.