HEALING YURT Gender Equity Festival: Social Justice Through the Arts



About

The "Healing Yurt Sex & Gender Empowerment Festival: Social Justice Through the Arts” is founded by Mongolian American multi-disciplinary artist and civic engagement community coordinator Eriko Tsogo.

In 2020, with target months from late Spring to early Fall, the Healing Yurt project seeks a host indoor or outdoor venue location to house the one day festival. In partnership with Denver Auraria Campus in Denver, the Healing Yurt Festival is offering a free public single day social justice festival about gender equity dedicated to raising public awareness and prevention about sexual violence and LGBTQ+ rights through the universal and powerful language of art and music. Proposed target month is April 2020 during sexual assault public awarreness month.

The “Healing Yurt" festivals main highlight feature will be a live art + interactive yurt installation sculpture to be created and deconstructed in the span of one single day by collaborating local Denver artists. The public/attendees will have a chance to participate in the social art experience through "votive wish ribbon" making workshop. The remainder of the festival programming continues with live music performances, featuring empowering speeches by nationally and regionally celebrated leading women’s rights and LGBTQ+ community speakers, among information/activity booths by participating anti-sexual assault and LGBTQ+ rights organization committed to sexual violence and gender rights advocacy and intervention as a public health, human rights and social justice issue to help reinforce prevention efforts.


Project Abstract

The "Dream Yurt" project series is designed to eradicate social barriers through the power of art, social advocacy and community, and in place promote kinship across our differences. By engaging/challenging systems of power, the project aims to transform systems of structured oppression, injustice and displacement while celebrating diversity, promoting social activism, equal justice, and inspiring social change.

As an extension and part of the original “Dream Yurt” project series, “Healing Yurt, A Gender Equity Festival: Social Justice Through the Arts” utilizes the term “healing” both in a literal and a broader conceptual meaning to help reconcile/embrace survivors of sexual abuse and trauma through personal symbolic gesture, the comfort of sharing in sameness and through the healing power/energy of collective empathy.

Essentially the hypothetical healing yurt installation/interactive sculpture container mimics similar properties of a sweatlodge in concept. The yurt installation/interactive sculpture presents a safe abstract space in time where sexual assault and marginalized survivors of trauma are united in pain, truth and the desire to connect. Healing Yurt represents/implies a conceptual, symbolic space; a domain where different cultures, communities, and dreams are housed/safeguarded under one unifying roof, where a wealth of knowledge can be shared/exchanged with each others as part of Colorado's rich and diverse cultural offerings.

Participants are invited to purge, release and cleanse their personal narratives of pain and sorrow as votive offering, in anonymity or otherwise, by creative means through writing or art on numbered colorful ribbons, to make “wish ribbons”. Each individual wish ribbon then gets attached/bound to the Yurt installation infrastructure (or roof poles), creating a visually erratic effect of colourful prayer flag composition inside the yurt.

In bidning the wish ribbons to the all-healing non-judgement space of “mother yurt” – she relieves the weight of sorrows light by connecting to the mass human condition. I wholeheartedly believe in the power of the “Healing Yurt Sex & Gender Empowerment: Social Justice Through the Arts” festival to help inspire, propel and instigate empowerment for the individual/survivor and surrounding community to reclaim the power that was lost through support, understanding and empathy.


About the Mongolian Yurt

Yurt in Mongolian means home. The Mongolian yurt has been a distinctive feature of nomadic life in Central Asia for over three thousand years. Mongolian yurts are ecologically friendly and one of the world’s most practically designed habitations. The construction and decoration of a yurt is infused in history and cultural/folk symbolism that range from equality, unity, strength and protection.

A traditional yurt is a portable round tent structure covered with felt and designed to be easily dismantled. The yurt frame structure comprises of expanding wall sections, a doorframe, roof poles, wheel crown, and two columns inside to support the roof. The roof structure is self-standing and relies on the support of 108 poles that resemble the rays of the sun. Complete construction takes around 2 hours or less depending on the amount of assembly support.


Live Art + Interactive Yurt Installation Sculpture Construction

The main highlight feature of the festival will be a live art + interactive yurt installation sculpture to be created and deconstructed in the span of one single day by collaborating local Denver artists. The public/attendees will have a chance to participate in the social art experience through wish ribbon making workshop/activity.

The hypothetical yurt installation will be constructed at host venue location, either indoor or outdoor. The collaborating artist team will plan/brainstorm the exact methods, techniques, concept, materials, and budget needed for successful completion of the installation sculpture. Integral and unifying is each artists unique notion/rendition of “hypothetical yurt” as container and all the amazing ideas that may birth from this project.

Main installation components to consider is the number 108 (amount of poles used in traditional yurt roof construction) and to create a main inner “lattice frame structure” by merging some type of symbolic circular wall and roof. Once the installation/interactive sculpture is completed, participants will be invited to come inside and tie/attach their “wish ribbons” onto the 108 roof poles. The act of tying the ribbons symbolizes the essence of the social art experience. The end product should result in a bouquet of colorful ribbons draping under the roof.





Healing Yurt Festival Mission

- The Healing Yurt project utilizes art as empowerment.

- The Healing Yurt Festival is offering a free public single day social justice festival about gender equity dedicated to raising public awareness and prevention about sexual violence and LGBTQ+ rights through the universal and powerful language of art and music.

- The yurt installation/interactive sculpture presents a safe abstract space in time where sexual assault and marginalized survivors of trauma are united in pain, truth and the desire to connect. Healing Yurt represents/implies a conceptual, symbolic space; a domain where different cultures, communities, and dreams are housed/safeguarded under one unifying roof, where a wealth of knowledge can be shared/exchanged with each others as part of Colorado's rich and diverse cultural offerings.

- In binding the wish ribbons to the all-healing non-judgement space of “mother yurt” – she relieves the weight of sorrows light by connecting to the mass human condition. I wholeheartedly believe in the power of the “Healing Yurt Sex & Gender Empowerment: Social Justice Through the Arts” festival to help inspire, propel and instigate.
- The Healing Yurt Festival has open door policy and inclusive to ALL who want to participate.

- To promote discussion and awareness about gender equality, sexual identity, and diversity issues.

- To end all forms of violence/mistreatment against sexual assault victims including sexual violence, victim blaming, and derogatory labels.

- To de-stigmatize sexual hypocrisy and self made assumptions, thereby engaging social justice and inspire radically informed communities.

- The healing Yurt is designed to embrace the universal truths and struggles of the human condition. By showing the struggles we all face, help eradicate the rigid border of gender inequality and in place, help highlight the power of the human condition and the universal in all of us.

- To cultivate community and diversity.

- To help empower and transform the individual and community through the power of empathy, inspiration and hope.

- To celebrate the beauty in struggle and resilience, power of relativity over absolution.