The Kalmiopsis Collection


Our first community partnership is here!

Kalmiopsis Community Arts High School (proposed!) is so excited to announce our first community partnership. We are partnering with The Southern Oregon Guild of Artists and Artisans to create “The Kalmiopsis Collection,” a youth-centered arts project in three parts:

Part I: “Creativity in the Kalmiopsis” Creative Community Workshop ~ September 20, 2021

Growing Creative Community” is a ground-breaking initiative of The Southern Oregon Guild, who created the endeavor in February 2021 as “Our communities are bursting with folks we call Creatives – people doing unique things, thinking unusual ways, and doing things that generate beauty, ideas, and other kinds of contributions to the local worlds we live in. Many of these folks don’t think of themselves as ‘artists’ or ‘craftspeople.’ They just do what they love…”

This approach to creativity complements our style at KCA: we are all creatives, even when we don’t see it.

Our Creative Community Workshop will bring together local scientists, artists, youngsters, and community members to share knowledge of the Kalmiopsis Wilderness, all 180,000 acres of this wild land that edges the Illinois Valley. The Kalmiopsis is, after all, the namesake of our school and yet — what do we really know about it? It’s so often overshadowed by the majestic Redwoods and rocky Pacific to the West, the deep Oregon Caves to the South, and the cultured cities to the East. How can we pool our knowledge to share what it’s like to walk the serpentine soils or seek the rare endemic flower of the Kalmiopsis leachiana, from whom the Kalmiopsis Wilderness gains its namesake?

Thus Part I is an online workshop, “Creativity in the Kalmiopsis,” to share the science, natural and human history of the Kalmiopsis Wilderness with local scientist Justin Rohde, as well as techniques for artistically interpreting the natural world with local artists of the Southern Oregon Guild.

When and where? Monday, September 20 at 6pm (online)

What’s the cost, you ask? It’s free! Registration is required, though, so we can send the Zoom link in advance and have a solid idea of who’s coming. A registration form will be available soon, but if you’re eager to register early then simply email and we’ll add you to the list!

Part II: Young artists submit their work for The Kalmiopsis Collection ~ through October 1, 2021

Part II gets to the heart of “The Kalmiopsis Collection.” It all started with Wikipedia, that is, the realization that our website art mostly came from the realm of Wiki and so we asked, Shouldn’t we try to find locally made Kalmiopsis art to use? Which led us to wonder, Well then, since we’re creating a youth-empowered school, shouldn’t we turn to local youth to create some Kalmiopsis art?

So we created an art contest! But it’s not a contest, not really. In a contest, y’all submit your work and then a panel of grown-ups judges the submissions and returns with rankings. We’d rather not have a group of judges (appear to) determine the artistic worth of our local youth — seems kinda subjective and biased, doesn’t it?

Instead, every youth aged 12-20 who submits artwork that meets the criteria will be accepted as a winner worthy of inclusion in The Kalmiopsis Collection! As long as your age fits inside the brackets [12-20] and you demonstrate that you put some serious effort into your submission, then, well … you’re a winner!

What does being a winner mean? It might boil down to three (3) things:

(1) Your artwork will be displayed at the Southern Oregon Guild gallery. Our opening will be Sunday, October 17, 2021, and your work will be hanging from the walls, or perhaps performed for the crowd.

(2) Your artwork may be used for Kalmiopsis Community Arts High School (on a t-shirt? web site? Facebook post?). This is where our grown-up selfishness comes in: we need original art for the school’s logo, t-shirts and website, etc. Wikipedia just won’t do. Adult-created art just won’t do. Art made elsewhere just won’t do. What we need is art made by local youth to be the centerpiece of KCA. (Must one plan to attend KCA in order to submit their youth-created art, you may ask. The answer is simple: No, no, and no! We have no right to tell you where to go to high school).

(3) You will receive cold, hard cash. How much? Who knows! Meaning = we’re volunteering for IVCANDonate on June 26, 2021 and whatever monies we’ll receive will be split evenly among the youth artists of The Kalmiopsis Collection.

Finally, what constitutes art? Art for “The Kalmiopsis Collection” can come in the form of photography, paintings, drawings, poems, stories, sculpture, collage, comedy skits, and multi-media related to the natural ecology of the Kalmiopsis Wilderness. “Art” is a big category and we’re open to all of it.

Part III: Art Opening at the Guild ~ October 17, 2021

The youth-created art of The Kalmiopsis Collection will be featured at the gallery of the Southern Oregon Guild of Artists and Artisans on Sunday, October 17, 2021 in Kerby, Oregon. Youth artists can talk about their work (if they choose) and we can all sit back and admire their awesomeness! There will be snacks and drinks and many, many well-wishers to celebrate our local youth art on display!