Rising out of the ashes of damage and neglect, reconstructions do not search for a former authenticity, but hold a complex identity that encompasses past and present. They are (re)claimed, (re)built, (re)written, (re)worked. The Reconstructions atmosphere is specifically focusing its efforts on identifying spaces that speak to re-writing personal and collective narratives through the lenses of mass incarceration and displacement. At their first project site, collaborators are looking to explore the concepts of home, healing, and trauma in relation to incarceration and re-entry. Their second site seeks to address gentrification and displacement as lived realities within a changing Philadelphia.

Reconstructions blog

North Philly Teach-in: Changing the Master Narratives, November 10, 2018, Mount Pleasant Mansion, By Denise Valentine

North Philadelphia has undergone rapid and significant changes over the last 2-1/2 centuries. While facing a history of discriminatory housing policies, strategic decay and displacement, African-Americans have raised families, created community, made their mark and changed the course of history. In recent decades, archival material has been uncovered revealing the lives of Africans enslaved at several Fairmount Park Mansions. What are their stories? If we don't remember them who will? If we don't tell these stories who will? And, who will remember us when we are gone?
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