Blog

More hope. More stories. More masks.

Dear Friends,

Sending our best to you and your family as 2020 crawls to a close.

A throughline of hope and activism ran through all our stories in this year of unraveling, upheaval and possibility. Stories of people who are grappling with the now, with where we are and where we’ve got to get to. People who have something to offer during these uncharted times. People who rebuild, restore, reinvent.

Your collaboration and contributions make these stories possible, stories that help pull us out of the funk, that energize and inspire. We thank you deeply and ask for your support and spirit for the coming year.

Some of the stories that poured forth in 2020 — The Climate Underground: Al Gore and Alice Waters gather scientists, chefs, farmers to advance the role of regenerative agriculture in fighting the climate crisis; Gert McMullin: Sewing the Frontline — fabric from the AIDS Quilt being used to make PPE today; Youth on Fire: The International Congress of Youth Voices; Louis Jones: Detroit Field Archivist, the grandson of a Pullman Porter, who stewards the largest labor archive in North America; Floating City: a visionary New Orleans water project; Theaster Gates: Keeping the Southside, a story of art and radical neighborhood urban renewal; Winona LaDuke and her vision of agriculture, solar power, rural development and environmental protection on the White Earth Reservation in Minnesota. The Lou Reed ArchiveFrances McDormand in Nomadland… and more.

Just ahead, our new Kitchen Sisters hour-long Special, The Keepers: Archiving the Now with host Academy Award-winner Frances McDormand will be coming to your radio station in the coming weeks.

You can hear all these stories and more on our podcast, The Kitchen Sisters Present… We hope you’ll listen & subscribe.

Amish women sewing masks at The Ridgeway Center, New Bedford, Ohio. Photo by Erik Stoll.

 

The shape of the year ahead is unknown and unprecedented. What we do know is we’re doubling down — more collaboration, more Keepers, more new stories and episodes — House/Full of BlackWomen with Ellen Sebastian Chang and Sital Muktari; more #YouthOnFire; a story from South Carolina in the aftermath of The Civil War: The Reconciliation Dinner; Unhoused: stories of people who are homeless and what led them there, in collaboration with North Beach Citizens; The Frolic, a collaboration with Laurie Anderson, Stacy Hoover, The Cleveland Clinic and the Amish community of Sugarcreek, Ohio. More stories that reflect the times we are living in and living through.

Recipe box salvaged in the Bonny Doon fire, August 2020. Photo by Shmuel Thaler.

 

We could not be archiving the now without archiving fire. As many of you know, Nikki lives on a commune in Santa Cruz. She has begun a new Kitchen Sisters collaboration with the Santa Cruz Museum of Art and History and a photojournalist, documenting the devastating CZU Lightning fires that devastated the region, gathering stories that emerge from the ashes about the way forward in this fiery time of climate crisis.

This year we took The Kitchen Sisters Interviewing, Recording & Podcasting Workshop to Zoom and reached scores of people all around the world, people taking on new skills, honing old ones. One workshop had people from Kentucky, Poland, Ireland, Barcelona, Calgary, London, Australia, The Jersey Shore, Houston, Kalamazoo age span 18 to 84 — helping producers, podcasters, community activists, museum curators, playwrights, filmmakers, funeral officiants, hydrogeologists and more shape their stories and narratives or take a whack at starting a podcast. All of them re-imagining their work and their mission in the now. 

We will be offering new workshops and mentoring opportunities in the year ahead. Think about collaborating with us and how you and your organization can use these skills. Think about giving someone you love Gift Certificate to The Kitchen Sisters {Zoom} Workshop or an in-person one when the mist lifts. You can get one here.

Our intern and mentoring program, which so many of you have helped nurture and support, continued throughout the pandemic, working in new ways with young people sheltered in place and going buggy in New York, Los Angeles, Indiana

Along with new workshops and stories — we have masks! That’s right! New Kitchen Sisters Present Masks with the lightning hands for your protection and a little bit of podcast juju. They’re yours with a donation.

Here’s hoping you are healthy and well and that the new year holds joy, promise and radical healing.

Thank you for your collaboration and for giving.  

Forward ever,

Davia & Nikki
The Kitchen Sisters